Photograph of the Holy Trinity at the Sanctuary
The Miraculous Image of the Blessed Trinity: And The Miracle of the Ox and Plough
This photo of the Three Persons of the Blessed Trinity appeared on a rock midway down a
mountain after the miracle of the ox as it was handed down to us over the generations:
A farmer went out to plough his fields above the escarpment, but went too close to the edge
and his ox and plough fell down the precipice. By the time he went around the mountain to
investigate, the farmer did not expect to find his ox alive. But there they were unharmed,
grazing in the fields below the escarpment. The plough had remained suspended and stuck
on a crag somewhere up the mountain. When he looked up he also saw the image of La
Santissima Trinita' painted on a rock. The shrine, constructed into the rocky cliff of the
mountain around the image, has since been the site of many miracles.
One of these miracles was also granted to my Grandfather:
He was born with a clubfoot and was abandoned by his birth mother
at the Hospital of San Giovanni in Rome.
The nuns gave him the name Giovanni to honour their patron saint
and invented the last name Nangini.
He was transferred to the orphanage wing
from where he was later taken to a country home by his foster mother.
As he grew old enough to understand, he asked often
to go to the Blessed Trinity Shrine in Vallepietra
because he had heard of the miracles God gave out at the Shrine.
However much he begged, the means to take him up a mountain
were not there at the turn of the 20th Century.
One time, he heard the songs
and the passing cart of a pilgrimage group.
Grandpa told me that he climbed a tree nearby
where workers ploughed the fields and loudly cried out
telling his story to the Blessed Trinity:
I wanted to come to you so much.
I wanted a miracle for my foot.
I wanted to ask you to heal my foot but I can't come.
Nobody can take me... And Grandpa cried the simple words of a child of 4 or 5.
When the group had passed and his sobbing had subsided,
he came down from the tree.
The workers stopped working to look and called out to him:
Look Peo, you are not hobbling. Look at your foot!
My Grandfather looked down and there was a perfectly sculpted foot where his clubfoot
used to be.
When we asked him to tell us the story during the cold winter nights around the fire,
we also wanted him to take off his sock so we could see the foot God had reshaped for him.
It was a little different than his right foot, but to us it was extra special.
The arch was higher and every new shoe hurt him because it had to adjust to his foot.
Would he ever complain? Not for such a small nuisance.
And he would tell us how it used to be,
by tapping the top of his hand, then cupping his hand and turning his palm up, he would say:
"I used to walk on the top of my foot and the bottom of my foot looked up to heaven like
When I was 8 years old, my mother took me
on a pilgrimage to this mountain shrine.
We were going to Canada and I was old enough to come along
with my older sister Lina -so we would never forget
what we saw and heard and might experience there:
People of faith
People of deep faith
People of simple means and great trust
People who asked from the heart and were heard in heaven
I woke up to find myself alone that morning
when all the candles went out
and I looked from where I sat on the blanket
and in the darkness I heard
all the voices as one voluminous waive of awe rising to God in wonder
and the flames flared up again in unison
as the voices once again rose to a crescendo
and yet mindful in reverence
a healing in their very presence
grateful for such an awesome manifestation
of their God and Creator Father, Son, and Holy Spirit
the Holy Trinity!
the Blessed Trinity!
La Santissima Trinita'!
It was also here
eight years earlier
that my mother bartered with God
dedicating the child in her womb
instead of the miscarriage and public humiliation
and my life was spared
and again at my birth from death
and again and again many times later
for a much longer story
that I still live to tell
thanks be to God who is Love:
the Holy Trinity of Love.