Church Teaching on Miracles

We know from the Gospels that Jesus performed many miracles, and very often they were related to faith of the individual or the community: “Go now . . . your faith has saved you.”

According to the Catechism of the Catholic Church, a miracle is “a sign or wonder such as a healing, or control of nature, which can only be attributed to divine power. The miracles of Jesus were messianic signs of the presence of God’s kingdom” (Catechism of the Catholic Church, United States Catholic Conference, 1997).

The Church requires that the miracles submitted for a person’s beatification and canonization be miracles of healing, meaning that after a thorough examination of the case by doctors approved by the Holy See, the cure, which must be spontaneous and lasting, did not occur through medical intervention and cannot be explained by medical science.

In addition to the “official” miracles that were accepted for St. John Neumann’s beatification and canonization, many visitors to the National Shrine have attributed their well-being or healing to their prayers to God through the intercession of our Saint.