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Why Some Saints' Bodies Never Decompose
by Dr.Arsenio Esteras, Jr
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It is a rarity and a hardly believable fact to most human beings of this generation that there are bodies of certain individuals declared dead that failed to wither and decompose with time. It is, point blank, a travesty of Natural Law for it to happen that way. When a human being dies, its body rot, stench and decompose and mix with the dust. That is the natural course or natural history of human life in this terrestrial and not celestial world of humankind. Science can explain that authoritatively.

In Sacred Scriptures, the Biblical basis of the reality of corruptibility is narrated in simple language in the story of Creation in the Book of Genesis. GOD the Creator, in simple unscientific language, uttered on the faces of Adam and Eve the following angry but holy utterance: "for you are dust, to dust you shall return." Following Scriptural logic, it is easy to comprehend that if GOD did not verbally forward such curse to the wayward couple, there would be no natural death or corruptibility to speak of. Adam and Eve will not be human. The reality of corruptibility that rules this miserable world will not come about. The decomposition of the human flesh then was by virtue of the omnipotent transforming power of the word of GOD. It should not be happening if He did not say it.

Hence, it is indisputable that the Sacred Scriptures and the principles of Science have a clear explanation about natural death. The scientific principles corroborate or run parallel with the divine definition of natural death uttered no less by the Creator Himself upon the insanely disobedient gifted persons created divine. Natural death equals corruptibility.

Nonetheless, the incorruptibility of the bodies of a handful of saints canonized or not by the Roman Catholic Church, has made the best scientific minds face a blank wall. They cannot give a proper satisfactory and convincing answer why the bodies of certain controversial people that were pronounced dead failed to conform to the natural processes of spontaneous decomposition with the passage of time. It is a phenomenon that is simply not natural.

There were some scientists who forwarded the hypothesis that the incorruptibility of the body of Bernadette of Lourdes who died centuries ago and was buried thrice already and exhumed just as frequent is due in part to the low temperature in the burial site where the body was interred and in part due to the composition of the soil where the body was buried. Yet, the body of the revered saint is still intact outside the burial site that was theorized as the reason for the incorruptibility of the saint's body. The scientists who forwarded such hypothesis have long been dead and their bodies decomposed.

For a better perspective on the matter of the reality of incorruptibility demonstrated by the bodies of some saints such as those of the Russian Orthodox Christian Sergei of Radonezh, the Capuchin friar Pio of Pietrelcina and the poor and uneducated Bernadette of Lourdes, the origin of the human person must be retraced, scrutinized and pondered upon. The human person, as narrated simply in the Book of Genesis, was created in the image and likeness of GOD with all the attributes of a divinity except the creative and transforming power of the word of GOD. They were divine and immortal whose bodies are not subject to rot, stench and decompose. Regrettably though, their deliberate disobedience and their frontal defense of such uncalled for disobedience by accusing others apart from themselves cost them their divine attributes. They became human and eventually cursed to die a natural death upon which the human flesh will rot, stench and decompose. So, it is very clear that the human persons were divine and incorruptible by origin or divine design. Incorruptibility was what GOD wanted for His most loved creatures and He gave it back in His divine wisdom and mercy to the bodies of the aforementioned saints that were once human. Can any human person reverse that? Can any human person question such divine prerogative?

If this generation of skeptics and shallow believers would care to glance at the biography of any of the aforementioned saints gifted with an incorruptible body, it is very obvious that they were bestowed with certain divine attributes not found with the majority of humanity even before they left this world in such out-of-this-world spectacular fashion. For one, the Capuchin friar was gifted with the stigmata, the gift of prophecy, the gift of bilocation, the gift of healing the unscientific way among others. Those attributes are in no way human attributes. GOD already favored them even before He preserved them from the ravages of time, diseases and natural death that most of us found hard to avoid. The comparative statistics between corruptible bodies and incorruptible bodies show a huge disparity.

In this terrestrial world, exceptional people are praised, and elevated in a pedestal for their feats and achievements in so many ways. Trophies and medals are given to those who excel in their craft as in the case of the gold medalists in Olympic Games. Heroes are remembered and revered with a lifeless monument and immortalized in numerous books for their contributions to humanity of their generation. God, as the supreme divine Person, also revere and immortalize His heroes on this earth. The big difference is such that His standards are not human but divine. Therefore, the awards that He bestow are not lifeless monuments or medals or extensive bejeweled plaques. He simply makes the corruptible body incorruptible. The world cannot give that to their national heroes and to those celebrities spectacular and superhuman in their eyes. Nobody will argue that the incorruptible body of Sergei of Radonezh that is on display in a town near Moscow in Russia since the 14th century is more spectacular and astounding than the lifeless monuments of Abraham Lincoln or Joseph Stalin or Oscar de la Hoya.

The incorruptibles are the unparalleled reminders of God's omnipotence.

For every rule there is always an exception. There was a time in Biblical history that the common cause of death of most living beings on the land of this earth was asphyxiation by drowning. It happened during the "Great Deluge". But God found Noah blameless for reasons known only to Him. He spared Noah and his family from death by drowning. They were the exceptions to the rule.

During Abraham's time, God destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah and its inhabitants with fire and sulfur from heaven. The populace of the twin cities of iniquity all died by being roasted alive save for Lot and His two daughters. They were the exceptions to the rule.

After the Resurrection of the Messiah, eleven of the chosen dozen all died a martyr's death. Only John the Beloved did not. He died in exile on an island named Patmos. Again, he was the exception to the rule.

In these modern contemporary times, the rule of corruptibility of the dead human body holds sway so much so that relatives of some of the departed would not even wait for it to happen. They prefer to subject their dead to cremation immediately after its natural demise to accelerate the corruptibility process. However, there are also exceptions to the rule on this matter. They are the incorruptibles that are on exhibit in their respective native homelands and the list is very short. Among the names in the list include Bernadette of Lourdes, Sergei of Radonezh and Pio of Pietrelcina. Like it or not, they are the exemplars of exceptions to the rule. God exempted their bodies from the rule of decay and decomposition.

Incorruptibility of the dead human body is not a natural or genetic aberrancy. It is simply an act of the Divinity in all His absolute glory. Well-written biographies of the rare recipients of incorruptibility tells the whole story. Read it!

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