Mercy Medical Center, a Catholic hospital in Springfield, Massachusetts, has announced plans to remove a window in a building which some claim displays an apparition of the Virgin Mary. Hundreds have visited just to see the window.
After its removal, the window will be further evaluated and observed for any changes in the image between its panes of glass.
According to Fox News, hundreds of people have visited Mercy Medical Center to see the second-story office window since the image was first noticed on September 30.
“The Sisters of Providence Health System (SPHS) will also explore options for appropriate display of the window but is not likely to reach any decision about its display until the conclusion of the evaluation and observation period,” Mark M. Fulco, an SPHS executive, said in an SPHS press release.
The press release reports that Bishop of Springfield Timothy McDonnell agrees with the plan.
“There has been a tremendous outpouring of prayer and attention focused on the window. We ask, as Bishop McDonnell has requested, that attention now be placed on prayers for the people in the hospital as well as the sick and infirmed throughout our world,” Fulco remarked.
Describing Mercy Medical Center as a “busy hospital and medical center,” Fulco said it “respects the cultural and religious beliefs of the community” but is focused primarily on caring for patients.
“Removal of the window is not only a prudent decision at this point but is necessary for returning to normal operations,” said Fulco, who reported that a glass expert says the image in the window indicates an “unusual but not unknown occurrence.”
“While the scientists seek an explanation of what physically occurred with the window, it is undeniable that the image within the panes of glass is unique,” Fulco continued.
Sister Kathleen Sullivan, RSM, who is Senior Vice President of Mission at SPHS, commented on the window image:
“The image has certainly focused people’s attention on the reality that the real importance of these events is the way our community came together in reverence and peace at a time when faced by so many challenges within our community and the world around us. It has resulted in a positive effect on people’s lives as well as Mercy Medical Center as it continues to be a transforming, healing presence within the communities it serves.”