Catholic Diocese of Salt Lake City investigating after wafer appears to bleed three days after communion

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

UPDATE: The Catholic Diocese of Salt Lake City announced their investigation determined the red discoloration was not a miracle but rather a result of mold. Click here for details on their findings. 

Previous story continues below:

KEARNS, Utah -- The Catholic Diocese of Salt Lake City is investigating an event that some are calling a miracle inside the Saint Xavier church in Kearns.

Last week, during the holy communion, a host was returned to the father overseeing the service. A host is the small wafer handed out as part of the communion. The father placed the host in glass of water near the head of the church. Typically, the host will dissolve away in a few minutes.

Three days later, members of the church say the host was still floating and it appeared to be bleeding. Word spread, and the church filled with people. For a short time, the host was on display.

The Salt Lake City Diocese has taken possession of the host, appointing a committee to look into the incident. The head of the committee, Monsignor M. Francis Mannion issued this statement:

"Recently, reports of a bleeding host at St. Francis Xavier Church in Kearns have been circulating within the diocese. Monsignor Colin F. Bircumshaw, Diocesan Administrator, has appointed an ad hoc committee of individuals with various backgrounds to investigate the matter. The work of the committee is now underway. The results will be made public.

The host is now in the custody of the Diocesan Administrator. Contrary to rumor, there are NO current plans for public exposition or adoration.

Whatever the outcome of the investigation, we can use this time to renew our faith and devotion in the greatest miracle -- the Real Presence of Jesus Christ that takes place at every Mass.

Msgr. M. Francis Mannion
Committee Chair"

There are no plans to make the host available for public view or adoration, according to the Diocese. However, the results of the investigation will be made public when it is complete.


  • nouveauday

    Thank you for this newsworthy article. I live in California, but appreciate national news of interest to Catholics, especially as concerns the Blessed Sacrament. Whatever the outcome of the investigation, I look forward to reading more news about this story.

  • Karen Sanchez

    I would like to hear from someone who saw this. I am a member of Immaculate Conception in Sparks, NV Thank you!

    • Maximilian Nightingale

      If the host is for some reason not fit to eat (e.g. if someone elderly or unstable spit it out), then the host needs to be properly disposed. It is therefore placed in water to dissolve it, so that it no longer has the form of bread, and then can be disposed in a spot set aside for this.

  • John

    If you look inside your shower or anywhere where water tends to collect, you typically find Serratia … it’s quite literally everywhere, and forms red biofilms. This isn’t some sort of miracle, it’s a common household bacteria growing in an environment that is perfectly suited for it. The real question is why this is considered newsworthy to begin with.

    • Paul Thomas

      But even according to the website you used, it is still an unlikely explanation. This is what it says about a different miracle:

      “While Serratia possibly could generate a single appearance of red pigment, it is unclear how it could have generated more pigment after each wiping, leaving this proposed explanation open to doubt.”

      • Obzervation

        Which is why it is being investigated to search for a scientific explination. It is only after scientists find no natural explination that The Church will consider a supernatural explination.

    • Edwina Lucero

      I’m sorry maybe you should look up Eucharistic Miracles in the Vatican. Jesus is real and not just a wafer. It truly is His Body and Blood. You want to know the truth just ask Jesus to reveal Himself to you. This isn’t a shower it’s a glass of water. There are no chemicals. Before criticizing and trying to scientifically discredit a miracle Pray on it.

  • Jeff Sampson

    Sigh, this is most likely one of one of any of a variety of bacteria that produce and orange to red color. If you’ve ever noticed a redish slime in your shower or toilet bowl, thats the bacterium prodigiosin. Could be what this is.

    Miracles come from church leaders, not God. Facts come from God.

  • Marek

    Back in 2008 similar miracle happened in Sokółka, small town in eastern Poland. Some time after a documentary called “I Am” was made about it, here’s a trailer if you’re interested.

    • JIm

      That’s the key. As a Catholic I am hoping it will be another of a long line of Eucharistic Miracles but my question is, why would someone “return” a host meant to be consumed? The possibility of a “slight of hand” trick cannot be ruled out. The Church will be the most skeptical of anyone else. It will be interesting to see their findings.

      • Char

        The host was returned because it was taken by a boy that has not received his first communion . And yes I am a parishioner at Saint Francis in kearns. No one here has called it a miracle. No one that I know of did anything to the host. It was placed in the water and NEVER EVER DISSOLVED. IT WAS PLACED IN THE WATER in front of the congregation that was attending Adoration hour.

  • Monte

    The best YouTube marketers we have encountered like
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    TV people: the host is distributed, not “handed out.” And the priest presides at Mass, he does not “oversee” Mass.

  • annmarie

    Look up the miracle of Buenos Aires….. this is not then first time this has happened. May be a prankster…. may be a miracle,

  • Char

    It is so sad to see so many non believers posting here. Wow may you never need the Lords help. Deny me and I will deny you he says. I love reading all the questiones raised by sensible people. I am from this parish and yes I saw the host. It was humbling To see the faithful be so moved.

  • mike tezon

    in our parish(Tacloban Philippines) we have the “Bleeding Host at Fatima”(parish) about the same description as this

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