August 3, 2006
The movie starts with a priest being sent to Brazil to investigate the appearance of the Virgin Mary on the side of a building; however while he is there he heard of the statute of the Virgin Mary that was crying tears of blood. Father Kiernan travels to a non-catholic church in Belo Quinto, Brazil where the people were mourning the death of Father Alameida. It is said that the statute started crying blood when the Father died and that the doves had returned then too. Father Kiernan takes several photos and samples of the blood so that he can do more research without having to remove the statute as he felt the people looked to the statute as a corner stone of their faith. The Cardinal doesn't accept that, he says that the corner stone of their faith is the church not some crying statute. The movie really gets underway when a young lad steals the rosary from the deceased Father Alameida and sells it to an American tourist. This American lady then sends it and several other souvenirs back to America to her daughter Frankie Paige.
Frankie Paige is a 23-year-old hairdresser who lives in Pittsburgh and is an atheist. Frankie is living a wild and free life, drinking, cursing, and going to wild clubs and just living it up; when she receives a package from her mother. Her mother had been traveling afar and sent her daughter some souvenirs. Frankie looked at them but never gave much thought to any of them especially to the rosary. It was at that moment when her world as she knew it would change forever.
At first she has an upset stomach at the smell of tea, but then there is the bathtub incident where she experiences the nails piecing through her wrist. She is found unconscious and taken to the hospital. The doctors examined the injuries and accused her of self-inflecting them. As her friend Donna is taking her home the ride on the subway train becomes another unexplained event. Frankie asks the priest if he is Andrew Kiernan and his reply is no he is Father Durning. Just then she snatches a cross necklace from one of the nuns and tosses it down the hallway of the train car. That's when the train goes crazy throwing people all over the place. It was then that the Father witnessed Frankie's back was being whipped by an unknown force. Again she is taken to the hospital for treatment and more tests. The doctors can't find anything wrong with her and rule it as epilepsy. Cardinal Daniel shows Father Kiernan a video taken by the train security camera that captured what happened and he requests that he go to Pittsburgh to investigate the possibility of a stigmata.
Father Kiernan goes to the beauty shop where Frankie works and she tells him that she has been expecting him. They proceed to a coffee shop to talk and he finds out that she does not believe in God; in fact she is an atheist. The Father wraps up his questioning once he learns that because he said there has never been an exception, anyone ever involved in the stigmata has been very religious, so there is no way that she could be experiencing this. She then shows him her wrists and asks him what does he make of them. Father Kiernan explains that when Christ was crucified he suffered 5 wounds; nails in the hands and feet, crown of thorns, lashes to back and a spear through his side. Father Kiernan goes on to explain that only deeply devoured people have experienced the stigmata and that they are haunted by intense spiritual pain and in some ways they are assaulted physically by their own visions of evil. He proceeds to tell her that this is a gift from God. She jokingly tells him she wants to give it back. It's then that she shows him her wrists. Father Kiernan tells her that a self-confessed atheists exhibits the wounds of Christ is not possible. Frankie then gives him a piece of paper that she found on the table the writing is Italian but Frankie doesn't know what it says but knows that...
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