The confirmation of two miracles through intercession is a very important stage in the process of beatification and canonisation. For that, a team of more than 500 medical consultants in Vatican have to attest that they are medically impossible. After that, a team of theologians have to study and give a report on divine intervention in the miraculous cure. Following that, a special congregation of cardinals have to approve it. It is only at the end, the Pope grants his approval.
Confirmation of the first miracle is the penultimate step in the process of canonisation. Only if a second miracle is confirmed, sainthood is declared. Hundreds of confirmed and unconfirmed miracles have happened because of the intercession of Sister Euphrasia.
Curing the bone cancer of Thomas Tharakan, a furniture polishing worker from Anchery in Ollur, is the first confirmed miracle attributed to Sister Euphrasia. Thomas had gone to the Jubilee Mission Hospital in Thrissur with hip pain.
After different tests, Dr Rajeev Rao, an orthopaedic surgeon, confirmed that the tumour on his hip bone was cancerous. The diagnosis was reconfirmed by Dr Krishnan Nair of the Regional Cancer Centre in Thiruvananthapuram. Thomas was admitted in Jubilee Hospital a day before his surgery. That day, Dr Rao took another scan, and he found that there was no tumour. The doctor was surprised. Since it was impossible in medicine, he admitted that there must be something divine in it. The tumour on the bone was very clear in the old scan.
Thomas’s sister Rosy said the miraculous cure was the result of her prayer to Sister Euphrasia, seeking her intercession. She was an employee of the St Mary’s Convent in Ollur. She admitted that she started praying after hearing about Sister Euphrasia. Once the first miracle was confirmed, Sister Euphrasia was venerated. Later, on December 3, 2006, she was beatified.
Only if a second miraculous cure is accepted, the green light is given for canonisation. On December 20, 2006, the year Sister Euphrasia was beatified, the second miracle happened. Jewel Jenson, a resident of Kannamkunni Veettil in Pulipparakunnil, Aloor, and a member of the Irinjalakuda diocese, was the lucky beneficiary of that miracle. Seven-year-old Jewel had a tumour on his neck. As the tumour enlarged, it became difficult for him to drink and eat. The doctors at Dhanya Hospital in Potta said the disease could not be cured without an operation. Jewel’s family was poor. His grandmother Rosy told his mother Reena that he would be cured if they prayed to Sister Euphrasia. Jewel and his mother put a picture of Sister Euphrasia in their house and began to pray to her.
During this period, his family began to notice that the tumour on his neck was shrinking. When Dr Sasikumar, who had checked Jewel at Dhanya Hospital, again examined him, he found that the tumour had vanished. To confirm the cure, the CMC nuns took Jewel to many other hospitals and many doctors for examination. They all confirmed that it was a miracle. Once the second miracle too was accepted by Vatican, the throne of saints came within the reach of Sister Euphrasia.