Miracle in Missouri

Mysterious priests, guardian angels, and…aliens?

1950s VINTAGE POSTCARD Angel with Children On Bike and Dog

Check out the update at the end of this post.

No one wants to debunk an inspiring, heartwarming, faith-affirming “angel” story. But somebody has to be the grownup around here.

Last Sunday morning, there was a serious two-car crash on Highway 19 near Center, Missouri. Aaron Smith, 26, struck Katie Lentz, a 19-year-old on her way to church, head-on. Lentz was pinned against the steering wheel of her totaled car with a broken femur and other injuries, unable to move. After nearly an hour of unsuccessful rescue efforts, Lentz asked the rescue crew to pray with her. They obliged.
That’s when the mystery priest materialized. “He came up and approached the patient, and offered a prayer,” New London Fire Chief Raymond Reed told KHQA-TV. “It was a Catholic priest who had anointing oil with him. A sense of calmness came over her, and it did us as well.” The priest prayed that the tools being used on the car would work so that Lentz could be removed.
Moments later, the  Hannibal Fire Department arrived.
After the jaws of life were used and Lentz was extracted, people began to wonder if the priest was an angel. He came out of nowhere, vanished without a trace, and doesn’t seem to be attached to any of the area’s Catholic churches. He also doesn’t appear in any photos taken at the scene. The story has appeared in USA Today, the New York Daily News, and the Washington Times, and is now blowing up the Internet, with many people feeling that the mystery priest was either a kindly good Samaritan who is too humble to make himself known, or an honest-to-goodness angel whose prayer facilitated a miraculous rescue.


“They were Asian. I think they were speaking…Asian.”

It’s a beautiful story, but on closer inspection it’s just plain weird. For one thing, an officer who was at the scene claims he had a little chit-chat with the priest.
“My first thought was that it would possibly send the wrong message to Katie that maybe we had called a priest and thought she wasn’t going to make it. So I went back and talked to the priest and told him we were worried she would think we’d given up hope. He said, ‘I just want to anoint her,’ and so we just let him come up to the scene,” Ralls County Sheriff’s Deputy Richard Adair told WTKR-TV.

Secondly, the priest’s prayer didn’t even work. He prayed that the inefficient cutting tools the rescue workers were using would suddenly start working properly. They didn’t. Lentz was rescued because the fire department – which was already en route when the praying began – reached the scene with the right tools for the job. This would have happened with or without prayer.

Thirdly, and most significantly, we have some extremely conflicting descriptions of what the mystery priest looked like. A composite sketch shows a balding man in his ’40s, with a narrow nose. Another witness saw a priest who looked like Walter Matthau.
Adair insists the man he saw is “not even remotely close” to the composite sketch. Adair thinks he was 60 to 65, about 5’6″, with an olive complexion and a “very strong” accent.
No one has said the priest was elderly, yet commentators have speculated that the spirit of the controversial saint Padre Pio, who was 81 when he died in 1968, might have visited the scene of the crash in spirit.

This is not the first time “angels” have looked different to every witness. In the Cokeville Elementary hostage crisis of 1986, several children reported seeing angels in the classroom where a deranged gunman and his wife were holding authorities at bay with explosives while making outrageous demands. Several of the children claimed to have seen a “beautiful lady” who herded them toward the windows. Sisters Rachel and Katie Walker saw beings that glowed like light bulbs hovering above the heads of the other hostages. Nathan Hartley said the angel looked like his great grandmother.
The thing is, if you’re going to believe in angels just because a group of schoolchildren saw them, then you’d better start believing in aliens, too. In 1994, 60 students at the Ariel School in Ruwa, Zimbabwe claimed to have seen an alien emerge from a landed craft in the schoolyard. Unlike the Cokeville children, these kids gave consistent physical descriptions of a bald little man with huge black eyes (with the exception of one little girl who saw long, lustrous hair on the creature).
What? You still don’t believe in aliens? Then why don’t you go back to wanking to Cosmos, you black-hearted materialist bastard?

Ariel School Sketches

Pictures drawn by the Ariel School children

Yes, I’m being silly, but there’s a point here: You are not obligated to believe in angels (or aliens) on the say-so of traumatized people who may be suffering crisis hallucinations, or misinterpreting the actions of a kindly stranger, or even just flat-out lying.
There are those who would argue that God’s messengers appear to each of us differently, coming to us in the form that is most familiar and comforting to us. In that case, I fully expect my guardian angel to be a taco that poops ice cream.

the-ice-cream-crapping-taco

My hero.

UPDATE: The mystery priest has been identified. He is a local priest, Father Patrick Dowling. He has gray hair, resembles the composite sketch far more than Walter Matthau, and was en route to Mass when he stopped at the crash site. Now can we stop this angel/ghost business?

13 Comments

Filed under Religion

13 responses to “Miracle in Missouri

  1. Here is the link to the Sheriff’s Deputy who was first on the seen….its always best to get it straight from an eye witness.

    • Ah now if only you could spell “scene” you might look half-way credible! Oh wait…nah you’d still look like a nutball

      • Sorry that this video makes your article look like a huge fallacy…..Nothing like an eyewitness to bring forth the truth….God Bless and have a nice day :-)

      • Cindy Livingstone, with due respect your video doesn’t counts like EVIDENCE of your delusion. Your frustration is what motivates you to smear this great skeptic post with your turd ideas. You are stupid and on the same level than Theresa Caputo. Best wishes and long life to Swallowing the Camel!

  2. Adair doesn’t say anything in this video that contradicts anything mentioned in the post. Also, this interview is embedded in one of the articles to which I linked in the post itself, so I am certainly not trying to withhold information from my readers. As always, I encourage people to do further investigation themselves if they’re interested in what they see here. I do not set out to deceive or mislead anyone.

  3. I am a Christian and I welcome someone to challenge what happened too. I have read many conflicting reports on who the man was. The thing is I do feel you may have a correlation with angels and aliens and as you dig deeper in the bible you will see the whole alien thing falls flat on its face. I am a former Catholic and now a believer of god. I don’t need a rosary or confession to a priest to save me. I am just a believer of Christ my savior. Even as Christian we can be deceive. I welcome people to challenge this story Christians and non Christians alike. It only makes people talk about God more and get down to the true root of what happened. If anything it should let you know a miracle happened. Still at least you got people talking. Good job on the article

    • “I am a former Catholic and now a believer of god.”
      “former Catholic and now a believer of god”
      “former Catholic…now a believer of god”
      The hell did I just read?

      Buddy, you know that Catholics ARE believers of “God” right? This is one of those little christian etymology things that just gets my goat. Catholics are christians too. Honest, I promise, they are. I don’t care how many people try to tell me that “No! There are Catholics and then there are Christians!” you’re wrong.

      To prove my point:
      “Chris·tian [kris-chuhn]
      adjective
      1.
      of, pertaining to, or derived from Jesus Christ or His teachings: a Christian faith.
      2.
      of, pertaining to, believing in, or belonging to the religion based on the teachings of Jesus Christ: Spain is a Christian country.
      3.
      of or pertaining to Christians: many Christian deaths in the Crusades.
      4.
      exhibiting a spirit proper to a follower of Jesus Christ; Christlike: She displayed true Christian charity.
      5.
      decent; respectable: They gave him a good Christian burial.”

      “Catholicism

      Ca·thol·i·cism [kuh-thol-uh-siz-uhm] Show IPA
      noun
      1.
      the faith, system, and practice of the Catholic Church, especially the Roman Catholic Church.
      2.
      ( lowercase ) catholicity.”

      “Catholic Church
      noun.
      a visible society of baptized Christians professing the same faith under the authority of the invisible head (Christ) and the authority of the visible head (the pope and the bishops in communion with him).”

      • Listen if you don’t like it you don’t need to agree with it. We do believe in different ideas. Honestly do you believe that there is no salvation out of the Catholic Church because that is one of your requirement’s to be save. So what hope do I have if I am not a Catholic. I cant even take communion if I am not part of the Catholic Church. Before you write and tell me how wrong I am why don’t you go read your Bible and apply to the Catholic teachings. Then you will see how much error is there. Hey lets not forget Mormons and Jehovah witnesses are they Christians too. I mean since you want to say we have the same ideas right. Better yet go and pray your rosary and sit by a statue of the virgin mary and see if you get your answer. Then write back and tell me how we believe the same thing. I will be waiting for your answer.. Oh by the way it turns out this story all you Catholics were saying was an angel turns out to be just a regular priest. How easy for the masses to be deceive. Yes I rather believe who my true savior and Jesus Christ is then some repetitive mass I need to sit through to try to earn grace.

      • Listen if you don’t like it you don’t need to agree with it. We do believe in different ideas. Honestly do you believe that there is no salvation out of the Catholic Church because that is one of your requirement’s to be save. So what hope do I have if I am not a Catholic. I cant even take communion if I am not part of the Catholic Church. Before you write and tell me how wrong I am why don’t you go read your Bible and apply to the Catholic teachings. Then you will see how much error is there. Hey lets not forget Mormons and Jehovah witnesses are they Christians too. I mean since you want to say we have the same ideas right. Better yet go and pray your rosary and sit by a statue of the virgin mary and see if you get your answer. Then write back and tell me how we believe the same thing. I will be waiting for your answer.. Oh by the way it turns out this story all you Catholics were saying was an angel turns out to be just a regular priest. How easy for the masses to be deceive. Yes I rather believe who my true savior and Jesus Christ is then some repetitive mass I need to sit through to try to earn grace.

  4. Sorry for the rant with this blogger but you had a point and nice of you to not rush to judgment even though some disagree with you. Too bad schwarhez cant see the bigger picture

  5. I’m afraid I have to state that Jehovah’s Witnesses, Catholics, and Mormons are indeed Christians. Though Schwarherz is not. He’s a Pagan.

  6. “No one wants to debunk an inspiring, heartwarming, faith-affirming “angel” story.”

    Oh, I wouldn’t say that :) Just discovered your blogs; great stuff, keep it up!

  7. Madonna

    I need the picture posted with the angel … Can u please help ??

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