In 1273 in the town of Lanciano, a woman named Richiarella went to a witch and asked her how she could recover the affection of her husband, Giacomo Stasio. Following the witch’s advice, she went to Communion to obtain a consecrated Host. She returned home and put the Host on the fire in an earthenware jar with the intention of turning the Blessed Sacrament into powder to put into her husband’s food.
The Particles, however, were transformed into living Flesh. Richiarella, horrified by these events, wrapped the jar and the Bloodied Host in a linen handkerchief that she then buried under the manure in her husband’s stable. Strange events began to take place inside the stable: every time Giacomo’s donkey entered, it would genuflect toward the place where the miraculous Host was buried, and Giacomo began to think that his wife had put a spell on the beast. Seven years later, Ricchiarella remorsefully confessed her terrible sacrilege to the prior of the Augustinian priory in Lanciano, Giacomo Diotallevi, a native of Offida.
According to the oldest stories, the woman, in tears, began screaming, “I killed God! I killed God!” The priest went to the place, found the bundle with the relics, and gave them to his fellow-citizens. A cross-shaped reliquary was made to contain the Host.
An ancient story recounts that two monks, Brother Michele and a confrere, were invited to Venice. When they arrived, they made the craftsman promise with an oath of loyalty “that he would not reveal to anyone what he was about to see and place inside the cross.