Christmas Miracle : Weeping Icon at Jesus' Birthplace  
According to hundreds of eyewitnesses, a painting of Jesus is weeping red tears. The painting is no ordinary icon for it hangs in the Bethlehem Church of the Nativity, above the very spot where Christ is said to have been born.
Many hundreds of Christian pilgrims, of all denominations, together with Jews and Muslims, say they have seen the tears. The weeping was first noticed by the 60 year old Muslim woman who cleans that part of the church every morning.

Sadika Hamdan told reporters that she was working alone in the shrine when suddenly " a light came from the column and the picture of the Messiah Jesus, peace be upon him, began to cry. It was beautiful, beautiful. He opened and closed his eye and later tears fell, red tears. At first, I was very frightened, and I wondered why Jesus was speaking out to me, a Muslim. But I went and got the brothers, and they saw it too, and we realised it was a miracle. I have been coming to this church for 22 years and it is the first time in history that I have seen such a sight."

At the time of the report about 600 people were visiting the shrine each day, and thousands were expected to attend the Sunday services. As well as the tears, pilgrims have also been reporting that the painting of Jesus was winking at them. There are of course no shortage of sceptics dismissing the whole story, but Stephanie Nolen, writing for a Canadian newspaper, had this to say :

"This reporter went to Bethlehem armed with the double protection of lapsed Catholicism and journalistic cynicism, and joined a crowd of about 100 kerchiefed Cypriot women clutching candles and videorecorders. 'Tears, tears,' they were whispering, some with tears in their own eyes. So I looked up - and Jesus winked at me."
(Source - Reuter 28 Nov, 1996; The Globe and Mail, Canada, 4 Dec, 1996 ; CNN )

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