Advertisement

Winnipeggers flock to see centuries old relic at downtown cathedral

Hundreds have gathered at a Winnipeg church to touch a piece of St. Francis Xavier.
Hundreds have gathered at a Winnipeg church to touch a piece of St. Francis Xavier. Michael Draven/Global News

Hundreds gathered at a downtown Winnipeg cathedral Tuesday for a chance to touch and pray over a centuries old relic.

The forearm belonging to St. Francis Xavier, patron saint of missions, is on a cross-country tour and landed in Winnipeg, Tuesday.

The ‘arm that baptized thousands’ was viewed by hundreds at St. Mary’s Cathedral.

One woman was in tears as she tried to explain what it meant to see a piece of the man who baptized thousands hundreds of years ago.

“I feel like crying right now.  It’s huge for me,” she said.

A long line formed early at St. Mary's Cathedral Tuesday.
A long line formed early at St. Mary's Cathedral Tuesday. Michael Draven / Global News
Michael Draven / Global News
Michael Draven / Global News
The right forearm of St. Francis Xavier, a 16th-century Jesuit missionary, will arrive in Montreal Sunday on the latest stop on a cross-country tour. Sunday, Jan. 28, 2018.
The right forearm of St. Francis Xavier, a 16th-century Jesuit missionary, will arrive in Montreal Sunday on the latest stop on a cross-country tour. Sunday, Jan. 28, 2018. Michael Draven / Global News

The 465-year-old arm is on a 14 city tour organized  by Catholic Christian Outreach, a university student group.

Story continues below advertisement

D’Arcy Murphy, a relic guardian, said the arm is a real rarity.

“There are a number of saints in the church whose remains are known as incorrupt, their bodies didn’t compose at a natural rate. St. Francis is one of them,” Murphy said.

The forearm will be available for viewing until 9:30 p.m. Tuesday.