SAN JOSE, COSTA RICA, July 8, 2013 (PHILSTAR) By AP - A Costa Rican woman whose brain aneurysm reportedly disappeared after she prayed to Pope John Paul II broke down in tears Friday as she publicly spoke for the first time about the church-confirmed miracle underlying John Paul’s case for sainthood.

The Roman Catholic Church presented 50-year-old Floribeth Mora and her doctor to reporters after Pope Francis approved the miracle needed to canonize John Paul II.

With tears in her eyes, Mora described how she was sent home with pain medicine but no apparent hope for treatment, thinking she was going to die after her 2011 aneurysm diagnosis.

She said a photograph of the pope seemed to speak to her during the deceased pontiff’s beatification, and her doctor said the aneurysm disappeared for no apparent reason.

Mora and her family kept silent as they awaited the signing of the papal decree recognizing her story as a miracle.

On Friday, accompanied by her husband, doctors and Catholic officials, Mora told gathered reporters that she had gone from believing she was about to die to a state of perfect health.

Mora, who owns a private security business with her husband in the middle-class neighborhood of Dulce Nombre de Tres Rios, said she woke up on April 8, 2011, with a strong headache and went to a hospital in the nearby city of Cartago, where she was diagnosed with a severe migraine.

The pain lasted for three days and Mora returned to the hospital, where a series of tests revealed an aneurysm on the right side of her brain that had begun to hemorrhage, according to her attending physician, Alejandro Vargas.

Doctors were unable to stop the bleeding and Vargas consulted colleagues in other Latin American countries and Spain, who advised against operating because of the difficult access to the affected area.

“The risk for Floribeth was death, or ending up with significant neurological damage,’” Vargas said Friday.

“I returned home with the horror of imminent death. Seeing my children walking by looking at me, standing beside my bed, seeing my husband making himself strong, taking my hand and crossing himself every night, it was very sad,” Mora said.

Her family built an altar to John Paul II outside her house, and while Mora was watching the late pope’s beatification on May 1, 2011, she picked up a magazine and, looking at a photo of the pope, started to hear a voice.

“It said, ‘Get up, don’t be afraid’,” Mora said.

Mora said she stood up and felt instantly better, and a variety of medical exams revealed that her aneurysm had simply disappeared.

She showed reporters photos of her brain taken before and after the purported miracle.

After her recovery, Mora wrote her story on a blog dedicated to John Paul, where it was seen by people pushing for the pope’s canonization.

Later, she traveled to Rome, where she underwent further exams, and church officials began working to have her recovery classified as a miracle.

Francis will set the date for canonization at an upcoming meeting of cardinals.


‘Divorce bill unconstitutional’ By Maricel Cruz | Posted on Jul. 06, 2013 at 12:01am

Any measure filed in Congress—whether pro or anti-divorce—violates the charter, a Nationalist People’s Coalition stalwart said on Friday.

Returning Isabela Rep. Rodolfo Albano III said the state policy on “marriage” and the “inviolability of marriage” are found in the 1987 Constitution and the Article 1 of the Family Code, respectively.

“You have to amend the Constitution first in order,” Albano told the Manila Standard.

Section 2 of Article XV of the Constitution provides that “marriage, as an inviolable social institution, is the foundation of the family and shall be protected by the State,” he noted. “The mere filing of those bills was unconstitutional.”

Proposals on divorce were revived at the House of Representatives after Marikina Rep. Marcelino Teodoro filed his so-called ‘anti-divorce bill’ (HB 37) “to strengthen the family as the nation’s foundation by making sure the bond of marriage remains intact ‘unless on grounds prescribed by existing law on the matter.’”

Teodoro’s measure was to counter Gabriela Rep. Luzviminda Ilagan’s divorce bill. In the 15th Congress, Ilagan filed HB 1799 on five grounds for divorce, including “irreconcilable differences that have caused the irreparable breakdown of the marriage.”

Albano said both proposals were not legally tenable while underscoring the Family Code, stating that marriage “is the foundation of the family and an inviolable social institution whose nature, consequences, and incidents are governed by law, and not subject to stipulation, except that marriage settlements may fix the property relations during the marriage.”

Malacañang distanced itself from the measure being pushed by its ally, Speaker Feliciano Belmonte Jr.

Presidential Communications Development Secretary Ramon Carandang said the Palace was “not even thinking” about the bill.

Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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