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Holy Sepulchre Conclusion: The Miracle Child and more..

Holy Sepulchre is a member of a triumvirate of South Suburban locales that I have covered in the past shared by Bachelor’s Grove and recently Burr Oak ...and while the Archer Avenue circuit has to a degree been my raison d'etre, I feel that I need to continue tying up some loose ends with an issuance of completion not unlike those I have assigned to St James, Queen Of Heaven, Mt Carmel and the cemetery aspect of the Resurrection Mary legend...Bachelor’s Grove will continue indefinitely or at least until I have achieved 20 visits as originally projected when I started in ‘07 ...my opinion is that a single, brief site or residential visits for a few hours on Friday night is virtually pointless and “investigations” should be ongoing and last months if not years depending on the situation and accessibility ...

Holy Sepulchre is a complicated site replete with both historic significance and reported supernatural activity and I have selected this 3rd visit to be one of closure for this site for a couple of reasons ...

Perhaps the most famous resident there is the Late Chicago Mayor, Richard J. Daley and ironically the decision I made to return to Holy Sepulchre was made on the same day that his son, Richard M. Daley announced that he would not pursue term re election albeit the fact that there are no incumbency restrictions limiting the mayoral tenure ... I was unsuccessful locating his grave last time around because there seems to be no section designation anywhere on the net, just a vague reference to it being near the 111th St. entrance and I estimate that the exact section may not be disclosed as an effort to foil the vandalism bent ne'er-do-wells ...I felt that I would be remiss in my coverage if I did not include photos of his grave site in at least one of the editions... plus with the eminent end to the Daley reign on the horizon in Chicago, it seemed a fitting time to pay homage to this prominent political family...be it a staunch Republican or steadfast Democrat, few can deny that the current Mayor Daley has beautified the Chicago skyline and city scape with projects like Millennium park and Navy Pier...his father was the personification of “clout “ and an integral part of Chicago political history ....

One of the two other reasons I have elected to return to Holy Sepulchre was to finally locate the final resting place of the Grimes Sisters ...this represents a degree of personal closure for myself as I have been researching and covering the German Church Road site for years and have been visiting that site since I was a child because of it’s supernatural reputation ...I was never really sure of where Barbara and Patti were interred until I wrote the extended article on the subject and visited the German Church Rd. site last winter that will serve as the conclusion of that famous haunted location that I found particularly upsetting when I researched the subject ...In retrospection I suppose anyone that is a parent would find that story particularly disconcerting,
but that one seemed to hit me really hard for some reason...unfortunately there is often an unspeakable act of insidious violence associated with supernatural disturbances and the reality of it can be disenchanting to say the least and in the same respect the Emit Till case associated with Burr Oak was also quite difficult to write ...So here I am paying my final respects to the Grimes Sisters and closing that chapter of the book (RIP Patti and Barbara)...

The lore associated with “The Miracle Child” is relatively well known and described as ”well documented” yet much of the details chronicling her short life as well as a photograph of Mary Alice Quinn remain elusive ...the tenuous times we face today by way of economic uncertainty, escalating worldwide sociopolitical unrest and troubling climactic changes may not have surpassed the level of hopeless destitution that befell many Americans during The Great Depression of the 30's...but the as future becomes less predictable, more and more seem to ponder subjects relating to spirituality, religion, their own mortality and perhaps become more susceptible to the suggestion of Devine intervention, miraculous cures, apparitions or that which may serve as a sign that there is more to our existence than this life and that death itself is simply transitory...

Mary Alice Quinn died at the tender age of fourteen due to a debilitating congenital heart defect that rendered her bed ridden most of her short life...she spent many hours in meditative repose contemplating her faith, the plight of the human condition and petitioning her patron Saint; Therese of Lisieux hoping for the type of miracle that young Therese experienced in her youth when a high fever first threatened her life... The young French girl was thought to be on her deathbed while her older sisters would gather around Therese’s bed and pray to a small Madonna statue in the room ... Therese claimed to have seen the statue smile and her fever suddenly broke and she was quickly returned to health with miraculous seeming recuperative reliance ...Therese died in 1897 at age 24 as a cloistered nun and was canonized in 1924 for her acts of quiet, selfless commitment to the vocational dedication she chose and her steadfast determination to promote love and peace ...

The rainy September day in 1935 turned suddenly sunny the moment Mary Alice Quinn died according to neighbors that remained vigil in sharing her hope for the miracle cure that never came to fruition ...at least not for Mary ...reports of her apparition appearing to ill stricken residents of her South Side neighborhood became commonplace and the subsequent inexplicable recoveries from what would usually be a terminal illness or life altering affliction that accompanied her sightings became a worldwide phenomena...claims multiplied of her appearing to many that included Mary Alice in their prayers beseeching her intercession for themselves or loved ones and having those requests answered ...these incidents of her associated with miraculous cures are supposedly all documented and are said to have occurred before and after her untimely demise but again, this documentation remains elusive to my surface probing ...

The daily pilgrimage to her unmarked grave site was enough to create a concern for her family and the possibility of her grave being robbed a distinct possibility... and although the family posted a marker with the name Reilly as a decoy, the stream of visitors seeking a paranormal panacea to their personal plights continued ...

The reports of Mary Alice sightings in her indigenous south side neighborhood have greatly subsided if not ceased completely but the visits to her grave-site continue for reasons that range from simple curiosity to the quest for a miracle cure...the common experiences include the wafting hints of floral aromas within the immediate vicinity of the grave even in the dead of winter with roses in particular being the most prevalent scent described by the more keen of percipients...

Current claims made by locals encountering the spectral visage of Mary Alice periodically resurface in literary and discussion circles where Chicago legends and lore is the topic but the psychology and metaphysics of faith healing have drawn correlations between the visions of
Joseph Reinholtz at Queen of Heaven and the subsequent return of his eyesight following visits to the small Bosnian village of Medjugorje where he met and prayed with one of the children associated with those Marian Apparitions ...whether faith healing is in reality simply the power of mind over matter at work engendered by belief or if it is truly a supernatural act of divine intervention is left to your discretion but there seems to be an insurmountable preponderance of
irrefutable evidence suggesting supporting the efficacy of faith healing (imho) ...again these tenuous times tend to permit at least the entertainment of philosophical ideologies concerning our existence and our spiritual essence to even those most ensconced in the banality of everyday life ...

The cool, windy mid September morning provided an atmospheric backdrop for my final visit to Holy Sepultre...the ominous black thunder heads were interspersed with momentary cloud breaks and periodic warm spots ...the ride there was pleasant enough save for a certain fenced off area on the main road I passed along the way with a weed and brush overgrowth height that seemed to compete with the rusted chainlink enclosure ... a tire track rutted path revealed a small lake or pond at a base of a gradual descent and I remembered just then that this property really bothered me the last time around when I passed it (over a year ago) ...I now know that this is the location of the recurrent dreams I have been experiencing since (more on that later)...

The gates of Holy Sepulchre stand at a stoplight right off of a rather busy south suburban thoroughfare and is almost a paradoxical shock to the sensibilities when you cross the threshold of the entrance into the serenity of stately oaks, venerable elms, a meticulously manicured lawn and the smiling benevolent Saints...that serenity fades quickly near one section in particular ....

Mayor Daley’s grave was easy enough to spot as it is the sole memorial with it’s own circular drive near the gate, plus I studied the monument on the net beforehand so knew what to look for ahead of time (for a change) ...conversely what I planned be an extemporaneous visit turned out to a proverbial Easter Egg Hunt for the graves of the Grimes Sisters...the flush grave markers in that area and cross sectioned grid that the net dictated pinpointing their final resting place were almost all covered by dead grass as the result of a recent mow and deluge of recent downpour storms ...a most congenial groundskeeper I consulted joined in the search and recruited a senior member of the crew in the quest ... the consortium of searchers now assembled revealed to me just how much these relayed rumors and mis information can alter the facts surrounding a case like that of the Grimes Sisters especially when the malleability of extended time passage can perpetuate the myths that fuel the lore behind the legends... one of the guys intimated his version of the German Church Rd-Grimes story that included the girls attending an Elvis concert at the International Amphitheater and were lured into a car by an Elvis impersonator when in reality they attended an Elvis movie at the Brighten theater (gone now) and after they were missing there was a report of girls resembling the sisters being seen with a man that bore a resemblance to Elvis by way of his duck tail hair style and long side burns... proof positive that erroneous rumors mixed with fractured facts then further convoluted by the passage of time often constitutes the formula for misinformation...

This was the third ( and tentatively last ) pilgrimage to the grave of The Miracle Child and much to my chagrin I found myself cris crossing section 7 in search of the marker contrary to the first time around when I got out of the car and almost instinctively walked right to it with nothing other that the section number to guide me... the discovery of a monument base with it’s top in absentia within the close proximity to where I thought the grave should be prompted speculation that the cemetery admin may have adopted the practice of removing the stone a month or so prior to Halloween to stave off the imminent increase of prospective “ghost hunters” and curiosity seekers alike during this time of year though, I continued the search of the perimeter hoping this wasn’t the case...crossing an evenly spaced tree line that kind of subdivided the section, the periphery of my focused field scan detected motion and that of the spectral seeming visage of a willowy, wispy white haired woman at a distance walking between a line of stones and disappearing beyond the descending grade towards the road...my hopes were dashed moments later when that same spectral visage circled past me on the opposite side driving a Saturn...

My perseverance paid off when the trinket adorned headstone appeared nestled between two crowding evergreens...there is always a divergent dichotomy of energies present at this cemetery and while the southeast along the tree line has consistently instilled a sense of negativity on all three visits, this northwest portion fosters a distinctly tranquil surrealism near the Miracle child’s Grave ...in most instances at least a perception of peaceful passivism if not that of what I want to describe as a sort of benign neutrality (not to be confused with apathy) radiates within that immediate proximity...the monument itself was typically adorned with the usual religious affectations such as Rosary Beads, Saint Medals, Madonna statuettes etc., but aside from the usual ecclesiastical offerings there were also a few coins and toys reminiscent of The Infant Daughter at Bachelor’s Grove...

I took a moment to tidy up the grave-site by removing extraneous debris and straightening
up the free standing decor as I always do (not just to optimize the photo shot)...I make it a policy to leave the cemeteries in a better condition than when I arrive and I strongly encourage others to adopt this policy ... I really did not experience anything dramatically supernatural at the grave-site but on the way back to the car I noticed that an old nagging weightlifting injury that I am almost always cognizant of stopped hurting completely and it continued to be pain free for the remainder of the day...



I am not going to promise that I will never return to the sites like Holy Sepulchre, Resurrection
Queen Of Heaven, Saint James and Mount Carmel that I am labeling as “concluded” but I plan on the inclusion of more down-town Chicago coverage like the high-rise hotel I featured a few years back and a general diversification of my endeavors...

But you never know, how many farewell concerts have The Who played? ...


Here are the unedited (compressed) photos from my September, 2010 visit (total) ....b
http://s890.photobucket.com/albums/ac105/HalfhandParanormalChicago/...

























































































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Comment by Barek Halfhand on October 13, 2010 at 1:57pm
Haunted Holy Sepulchre-The Miracle Child
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vb7rBUeLNow

Three years of site coverage including motion video and still photos featuring this famous haunted location that is the final resting place of Chicago's Miracle Child: Mary Alice Quinn, The Grimes Sisters, Mayor Daley and more ....b


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Comment by Barek Halfhand on October 7, 2010 at 2:13pm

        

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