Lebanese Jews Converted by Miracle

In the eighth century of the Christian era most of the Jews who lived in Beirut, Lebanon, were converted to the Catholic faith by a miracle which became known all over the world, and which was one of the decisive arguments at the Seventh Ecumenical Council (Nicaea II, 787) leading to the condemnation of Iconoclasm.

The story of the miracle, briefly told, is as follows: A Jew of the city of Beirut rented a house which had been at one time the home of a Christian family. The Jew, for whatever reason, did not remove an image (or Icon) of Jesus Crucified which had been prominently placed by the Christians on the wall of a room in the house. One day friends of the Jew came to visit him, and, spying the picture of Jesus hanging in a place of honor, they became angry with their host. One of them, in a rage, took a spear and struck the side of the Crucified; whereupon, to the amazement and terror of all, blood and water gushed forth from the open side of the image, and continued to flow in great abundance and for such a length of time as to bring to the spot a great multitude from the city.

A man paralyzed from birth jumped up on his two feet as soon as he was annointed with the miraculous flow. A blind man instantly recovered his sight on being touched by the same. After that innumerable miracles followed, so that, as a result, the Jews of Beirut en masse, men and women, old and young, professed Jesus to be in truth the Messiah foretold by their prophets, and desired and prayed for by their fathers. And after thanking God for bringing to them by such a stupendous miracle the light of the Gospel, and after proclaiming with sighs and tears their repentance, they went to the bishop of Beirut from whom they sought and received the saving waters of Baptism.