Maguire, Father Joseph (ca. 1931-)

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Maguire, Father Joseph (ca. 1931-)

Catholic priest popularly known as "The Miracle Man," who specializes in spiritual healing. He was born in Lowell, Massachusetts; his mother was Irish, from Castlegregory in county Kerry. Maguire was a successful businessman, owning an electronics sales company that sold missile parts to Cape Kennedy, and also operating a chain of hotels, motels, and restaurants. Then, at the age of 38, he left his profitable businesses and became a Catholic priest.

His gift of healing developed slowly over a period of years, commencing the year before his ordination. He has since figured in a large number of medically unexplained cures that followed his touching people who were terminally ill.

In 1984 Father Maguire visited Ireland, where he had an enthusiastic reception. More than 2,500 people crowded into the Church of Our Lady Queen of Peace in Merrion Road, Dublin (built to accommodate 1,800 persons). Parents held out babies for Father Maguire to touch. After celebrating mass with eight concelebrants, Father Maguire blessed the congregation and went to pray with the sick. Subsequently a 46-year-old mother, paralyzed for several months with a cancerous tumor, claimed that she regained the use of her left arm and was able to walk again after being virtually immobile.

(See also healing by touch )