A Unique Eucharistic Miracle
Studied by Science
Lourdes, November 7, 1999
During the “Offertory” the two hosts appear raised in the footage, they clearly are seen lying one on top of the other, perfectly fitting to the paten and to each other, making a single body. In the footage there are several shots that film them in that position and there are no doubts that the two hosts are physically lying upon each other and perfectly adhering to the paten. During the Epiclesis it can be clearly seen that the upper Host starts to detach from the lower Host, rises and gently hangs in the air, two centimeters away from the underlying one.
Picture 1. Selection of most meaningful frames of Host levitation, slowed down and magnified.
Frames 1 to 4 in Picture 1, cover a time span of less than two seconds. This makes it difficult to believe that aerodynamic or electromagnetic active mechanisms/algorithms of stabilization and control, similar to a PID (proportional- integral-derivative control) can be used in real time to such a precision level to reduce unstable fluctuations for such a short period of time for an extended body, light and uneven like a wheat host with a 24 cm diameter, floating in the air.
1: Upper Host lifts slightly above the inferior one on the right side (reference coordinates of the observer).
2: Upper Host completely detaches from lower one also on left side and starts levitating above lower one. At this stage the left side keeps being lower than the right one.
3: Left side seems to receive an overshoot and lifts slightly higher than the right side that on the contrary seems to keep a position of stationary balance, almost instantaneously acting as a pivot of the pitch rotation.
4: Left side of upper Host exceeds balance position and slightly lowers, after which it finally stabilizes vertically without any pitch. There are no translations neither vertically nor horizontally nor rotations around a vertical axis and it seems that the Host has a slight, almost imperceptible rolling with a parallel rotation axis to the imaginary line that joins the priest’s hands. Stationary balance is reached within 1-2 seconds and the field of force seems to be stationary (except for slight fluctuations), intense and of a classic nature and takes the Host back to central balance position stabilizing all initial swing in a few fractions of a second.
In the following frames the separation between the two Hosts is evident and measures around 2 cm, it allows to distinguish without distortion a glimpse of the garment and the movements of Mons. Billet standing behind it (Picture 2).
Picture 2. Magnified frame of levitation of the upper Host above the lower one. A luminescent golden mist appears to persist while the embroideries of the priest’s garments are clearly visible and not distorted through the separation between the two Hosts, this excluding any gas flow between the Hosts or a possible video remodeling/editing.
The VHS video, supplied also in the original version by the French Catholic Agency “Jour du Seigneur” in charge of the tv recordings, has been thoroughly examined and key frames have been extracted and magnified by audiovisual technicians like Berrino Giacomo, owner of Studio Berrino Audiovisual Production, located in via Gorizia 21, 12042 Bra (Cn)
From a technical analysis and as declared by field technicians, there are no indications that the video images, also broadcasted live on the day of the Eucharistic Celebration, have been counterfeited or modified with editing programs (least of all in real time during the event) and therefore the images of the footage have to be considered factual and objective.
With the premise that it is not easy to interpret such an anomalous phenomenon, with the tools of ordinary science, we will try to propose some speculations even though incomplete concerning two basic aspects of the objective fact taken under examination: levitation and luminescence of one of the two Hosts held in the paten during Eucharistic Celebration.
A body in initial state of rest in order to start levitating in midair has to be subject to an external force rapidly changing over time and very well calibrated, more intense after the short initial lifting instants and lower during the subsequent extended period of midair floating. Such a strength needs to be initially higher and directed almost exclusively upwards in order to counteract both the weight of the object (gravitational force acting on its inertial mass) and cohesive forces to molecular/atomic level between the surface of the body itself and what it lies on (Van der Waals force and fluctuations of quantum “vacuum” field known as forces of Casimiro) it will then re-calibrate right after that and decrease during the floating phase in which only weight force acts on the body, together with some much weaker aerodynamic forces, unstable, chaotic, multi-directional and subtle but not negligible. Such forces concern atmospherical gas recirculation in absence of thermal balance and/or in presence of moving nearby bodies and their effects will be all the more significant the lighter will be the body under consideration. In order to maintain mechanic balance, such forces ought to be eliminated by equivalent stabilization forces to constantly and instantaneously adjust with active control techniques very difficult to implement even with tools and in specific labs.
Among the different techniques of levitation used to counterbalance weight we can mention the optical one (Optical tweezers), the acoustic one with pressure stationary waves, the aerodynamic one and the magnetic (or electromagnetic) one. Not to forget is also a kind of quantum levitation that happens on ultra-light particles and on picometer scale (around 1 mm divided a billion times) therefore much smaller than the 2 cm levitation distance observed.
Since the first two – optical and acoustical – need big dedicated setups and they have been successfully applied only on atomic condensates at -270 Celsius degrees in the case of the first one, and on small polymeric spheres or on water droplets in the middle of cavities with two ends between which to enter acoustic stationary waves in the case of the second one, we would rather exclude them in this specific case as there are no logical prerequisites nor evidences for their application in an broad and setups free open space, at room temperature and on a very large though light object. Moreover there are no evidences that people (their hands and their clothes) and objects close to the paten were being affected by pressure waves at that very moment and the presence of big sonic focusing systems, complex but invisible would be rather unlikely when not impossible.
We also can exclude aerodynamic levitation both in the case of gas flows coming from the upper Host and headed downwards (those would need to be constantly, instantaneously, dynamically and wireless adjusted within the host itself, absurd!) and in the case of flows coming from the side of the paten and directed sideways upwards (they would not have been possible from the center since there was the lower host in between and not being pierced it ought to have lifted together with the upper one). Beyond the incredible difficulty of creating a gas stream that is not affected by in homogeneities of the case, able to adapt instantaneously to the position and the variable shape of the host and that can lift it up without letting it fly aside or twirling in the air. In the footage there are no evidences neither of meaningful aerodynamic effects on levitating Host, on the inferior one still on the paten or on other objects or fabrics nearby, nor of refraction/scattering of the light between the two Hosts during the levitation (typical in presence of gas flows, see for example how hot air motion on top of the flame of a candle distorts light). Also in this case aside from the fact that both Hosts would have been supposed to rise, it is very difficult to think that mechanisms of dynamic adjustment and stabilization can be successfully used in this case and in the filmed condition.
It is left to be taken into account magnetic levitation and the possible effects of a magnetic field on the host. Obviously, host is mainly wheat flour and air with a minimal percentage of water left after baking, estimated in excess at around 20%.
A plausible estimate of its density could be similar to the one of unleavened bread of around 0.3 g/cm^3 that makes it a total weight of around 110 g for a host with a diameter of 24 cm and 8 mm thick (volume of around 360 cm^3). Therefore, it is neither metallic nor conductive!
A continuous magnetic field acting on a paramagnetic or ferromagnetic object magnetizes it on short term or long term respectively (aligns the spin of trillions of its atom’s electrons in one single collective direction compatible with the inductive field) and attracts it, independently from its initial magnetic polarity. Apart from the non-metallic nature of the host, such a magnetic field would be affected by intrinsic instability as announced by Earnshaw theorem for zero divergence field, according to which there cannot be any electric charge or magnets distribution allowing stable levitation: it would be like trying to make a pencil stand on its tip [Rif.: W. Earnshaw, “On the nature of the molecular forces that regulate the constitution of the aluminiferous ether”, Trans. Camb. Phil. Soc., 7, 97–112 (1842) ].
Even if the host was made of iron, the magnetic force would result unstable with respect to the slightest variations of position or rotation of the host from its balance point and solenoids would be necessary around it in order to stabilize it in the air by creating other magnetic fields on different axis. The presence of oscillating magnetic fields acting on metal bodies or the employment of the rotating levitron effect, invented by Roy Harrison in 1983 [Rif.: Berry, Proc. Roy. Soc. London 452, 1207–1220 (1996)] cannot justify what observed in the video (as a fact the host is not metallic and does not rotate). This also cannot be compatible with the present case.
A magnetic field becomes repulsive to a body on which it acts only if, penetrating in that body, it can induce non-dissipative electronic currents capable of generating an induced magnetic field with an opposed polarity to the starting one. This is what happens with Type II superconductors cooled down at cryogenic temperatures of -270 C or -196 C (HTSCs) (constant of magnetic susceptibility equal to -1 and Meissner-Ochsenfeld effect of electronic Cooper couples). This is also the case of diamagnetic materials suspended upon magnets with an intense force flow. The higher is the magnetic field and the material susceptibility factor the higher is the levitation distance of the object from the magnet. In these two instances Earnshaw theorem is not applicable, since stabilization is obtained by the superconductive or diamagnetic nature of the object.
Understood that in the host case we are not in presence of superconductors at cryogenic temperatures, we are left with diamegnetism hypothesis, a very feeble macroscopic phenomenon, discovered by Anton Brugmans in 1778, known today to be an effect of quantum mechanics within bodies’ atomic structure. Diamagnets reject external magnetic fields as a consequence of Larmor’s precession of the electrons bound in quantum shells around the atoms of the material, which induces a magnetic momentum opposed to the external field and rejects it.
Most of the substances that surround us, especially water, plants and animals are in fact “diamagnetics”. In other words, they are repelled (even though very faintly) by VERY powerful magnets. This is due to the fact that their atoms warp and react as small magnets that oppose the external field.
Among known diamagnetic materials we can cite pyrolytic carbon (-0.0004 magnetic susceptibility constant), bismuth (-0.000016), … and water (-0.000009). Therefore, diamagnets have in absolute value much inferior negative magnetic susceptibility constants in comparison to superconductors that have been cooled down to their Meissner state (-1) and therefore need much more powerful magnetic fields to levitate. Diamagnetism had already been proven in 1939 by Werner Braunbeck. In 1997 professor Andre Geim from Nijmegen University in The Netherlands was able to prove the generality of diamagnetism by levitating a live frog first, then a piece of plastic, a chunk of cheese, of pizza and a drop of water in the end within a closed cylindrics solenoid generating a very powerful electromagnetic field of 16 Tesla in a limited area of a few centimeters (equivalent to round 400.000 times earth magnetic field and 4 times the magnetic field of CSM solenoid used in CERN particles experiments – the biggest magnetic solenoid of the world, weighing 12500 tons. With a length of 22 meters and a diameter of 15 meters) [Rif.: M. Berry, A. Geim, Eur. J. Phys 18, 307], [Rif.: E.H. Brandt, “Theory catches up with flying frog”, Physics World, 10, 23, Sept 1997]. A diamagnetic body to levitate under an external magnetic field needs to have its weight force duly counterbalanced by a magnetic field directed upwards.
Magnetic field is equal to the product between the magnetic momentum induced in the object by the magnetic field and the vectorial gradient of the magnetic field itself. (Dipole approximation).
It is thus possible to draw the value of the minimal magnetic field capable of levitating an object.
In Picture 3 on the tab are displayed the parameters both in case the host is made out of unleavened bread (assuming 20% of water) and in case it had absurdly been made completely out of pyrolytic carbon. In both cases magnetic field needed for diamagnetic levitation would be disproportionate and above all not evenly attainable in the rather broad open space area, typical of the case in question. Assuming that pyrolytic carbon nanopowders have been mixed to the host batter, the minimal necessary magnetic field would be around 10 Tesla, an exorbitant amount and certainly hard to obtain on an altar setting. Likewise, there is no evidence of such an attempt, since the upper host should have looked much darker than the lower one, which did not.
|Parameter||Unleavened bread||Pyrolytic carbon|
|Density||0.3 g/cm^3||1.4 g/cm^3|
|Magnetic susceptibility||-0.000009 * 20%||-0.0004|
|Host weight||110 g||720 g|
|Minimal necessary magnetic field||~ 20 Tesla||~ 3 Tesla|
Picture 3: Overview table of the calculation of minimal magnetic field to guarantee host levitation in 2 diamagnetic cases (unleavened bread with 20% of water and pyrolytic carbon) assuming g=9.81 m/s^2, t=10 cm (hypothetical thickness of an equivalent magnet) and mu0 = 1.25*E-6 T*m/A
The short discussion on levitation phenomenon and the inability to justify such an objective evidence through the laws of modern physics would be enough to welcome the event as mystical and supernatural.
Nevertheless, over the levitation what is also striking is the luminescence of the Host.
Luminescence that is radiated in form of a very light golden mist between the two Hosts during the levitation (picture 2) and during the ostension (picture 4) where the luminous emission is brighter in the center of the Particle and not on the rim. This fact might depend on the different density of the batter from the center to the rim. Nonetheless hosts are made out of a batter of wheat flour and water that is spread in leaves on rectangular forms from which hosts are cut out, dried and baked. It is therefore not plausible that the host is denser in the rim than in the center, being it obtained by a dough leaf of variable thickness lengthwise and not in radial direction.
Picture 4. Frame of Particle ostension.
Among the ingredients that compose the host (water and air apart) starch, gluten, proteins and fats once properly excited give out photons in the infrared portion of the electromagnetic spectrum, from 2 um upwards and are not visible to human eye (whereas fluorescent spectra give out ultraviolet wavelengths lower than 300nm, (Rif: Kokawa, M., Yokoya, N., Ashida, H. et al. Food Bioprocess Technol (2015) 8: 409) whereas wheat, sugar chemically reduced during baking gives out mainly at a wavelength of 450-500 nm [Rif.: Nicola Caporaso, Martin B. Whitworth & Ian D. Fisk (2018) Near-Infrared spectroscopy and hyperspectral imaging for non-destructive quality assessment of cereal grains, Applied Spectroscopy Reviews, 53:8, 667-687], [Rif.: Sk, M., Jaiswal, A., Paul, A. et al. Presence of Amorphous Carbon Nanoparticles in Food Caramels. Sci Rep 2, 383 (2012)] instead the color of the host under consideration tends more to a yellow-orange color with a wavelength of around 580/620 nm.
On the premise that spectral analyses of emission and absorption ought to have taken place during the event and not through recorded images, the bright halo released by the Host is decidedly peculiar in terms of color, intensity and light scattering and it is not completely explicable through the natural phenomenon of light diffusion inside of the Host coming from the lighting of the church (sub-surface scattering).
On the basis of quantum forces encoded by standard model (in this case quantum electrodynamic QED) and of its macroscopic consequences typical of diamagnetism and on the basis of the conditions clearly highlighted in the video under examination, we cannot justify the levitation of the Host in the footage through physical phenomenon or technological devices known as of today. We welcome therefore the phenomenon as metaphysical and decidedly unusual.
Hence on the basis of the events objectively, and independently recorded on video support concerning the Eucharistic celebration of November 7th, 1999 in Lourdes, it is not difficult to state that physical knowledge acquired by human kind up to the present day cannot be reconciled with what observed concerning levitation of the Host at issue.
In Fede, Dr. F. Pagliano
Berrino Audiovisual Production
Via Gorizia, 21 12042 Bra (Cn)
Bra, June 11th, 2004
To the Attention of ………………………..
The videotape of the Holy Mass, broadcasted by France 2 on November 7th, 199 and recorded ……………….. has reached my studio in VHS Secam setup, in use in France, with a very poor quality.
This videotape was delivered to me, Berrino Giacomo, owner of a studio of audiovisual production and of professional video shooting, in Bra (CN) – Via Gorizia 21 – with the purpose of being transcoded and copied in PAL system and in order to highlight some frames that caught a particular phenomenon that took place during the religious celebration recorded.
I prepared a first editing with magnified and slowed down images followed by the full recording of the Holy Mass as a document.
As a technician I was not very satisfied, in fact the VHS which is a mediocre set-up, was showing a very poor and disturbed recording, moreover some seconds of the footage were missing, during which the screen appeared completely black.
I therefore asked ……………………… to provide me with another tape, intact and possibly with a better recording.
Thanks to the precious help of ……………a new intact tape of the same religious function could be obtained from the Catholic Agency “Jour du Seigneur”, in charge of French catholic shootings and in possession of the originals. The quality was better, even though in VHS format and the frames that in the first videotape were blackened were intact but they did not show anything interesting.
It has to be considered the possibility that some shootings of “France 2” taken with cameras mainly focused on the Host and therefore with enlightening details, might still be preserved in the recordings’ archives but they have not been added to the broadcasted video.
With this new videotape I prepared a second editing very similar to the previous one.
When I observed the images of the phenomenon of the Host levitation, I clearly saw that it lifted of a few centimeters, without any trick, it kept swinging, it levitated.
Under a technical point of view, after an accurate analysis of the tape I can witness that the unusual phenomenon turns out to be true, without tricks or manipulation of the images.
Giacomo Berrino (Studio owner)