A holidaymaker was stunned when she took a photograph of a craggy coastline and captured this spooky image – of the VIRGIN MARY.
The hooded figure is seen holding her arms out-stretched in a cradling action sheltered beneath rocks at Newquay’s Western Beach, Cornwall.
Caroline and Stephen Gray were walking along the coastline when they stopped to pose for a series of holiday snaps.
But Caroline, 38, was speechless when the couple returned home and studied the digital camera to spot a clear image of the Virgin Mary, which she insists was not present when she took the picture.
And now the receptionist, from Chester, Cheshire, believes the photo could spark a rush of worshippers to flock to the coastal resort to catch a glimpse of the religious icon.
She said: ”There was nothing on the screen when I took the original photograph. Then when we got home the image of the Virgin Mary had appeared.
”There was absolutely nobody else on the beach at the time, which makes this all the more intriguing.
”It looks like a pregnant woman and she appears to be holding a lamp. It certainly looks like the Virgin Mary.
”I don’t know if it would still be visible if you went there to see it, but I’m sure that won’t stop people from trying.”
Caroline took the picture at around midday while enjoying a romantic stroll with hubby Stephen, 53, on Valentine’s Day.
Mother-of-three Caroline said some of her friends had dismissed the image as a trick of the light, but she believes there could be more to it and she is now researching the history of the area.
She added: ”The place where this photo was taken was of the arch in the rocks on the left hand side of a large cave to the left of holiday flats on the front.
”When the photo was first taken it show just the archway and the rock surrounding it. Some people have suggested that it may be just a light reflection, but the sun was behind the rock face at the time and it would have filled the whole cave instead of just forming a perfect image.
”I would like people to shed some light on the history of that particular area. The image was definitely not a natural part of the rock formation as it was not visible at the time. I understand the nearby caves were used for smuggling.”
Thousands of people flocked to Limerick in Ireland in 2009 when an image of the Virgin Mary appeared on a tree stump.
An image of her religious figure also appeared on a toasted cheese sandwich, which sold on eBay for $28,000.
Milton Hospital, near Boston in the US, asked the Catholic Church for help in 2003 after being swamped by more than 25,000 people seeking to view what they believed was an image of the Virgin Mary in a third-floor window.