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Here’s another letter from a reader I want to share with you:

From  Patti Blahut

Could you please explain how rose petals still attached to the bud can have a picture on them “appear” after holding it against one’s skin?

A friend is going to see someone who does this phenomenon and I believe it to be a hoax, one of those “signs and wonders” deals that Jesus said a perverse generation looks for. Once upon a time, faith was all that mattered, and now so many need these proofs.

this is disconcerging

From Bro. Carmelo Cortez and Rose Petal Images, 2008/08/26 at 6:12 AM

 And here’s my reply (expanded a little bit after hindsight tells me to amplify my thoughts): 

Hi Patti,

Any good magician can make pictures appear on rose petals using a secret but natural method. This doesn’t mean that Carmelo Cortez is using magic tricks to produce sacred images on rose petals.

People who have attended his missionary works swear that they experienced miracles. They testify that the sacred images appeared miraculously on rose petals. Who am I to contradict those personal testimonies? I have not been there when those miracles happened. I have not seen how Bro. Carmelo worked his miracles. It will be unfair for me to pass judgment on something I have not examined carefully.

Yes, images can be formed on rose petals using magic tricks, but that doesn’t mean Bro. Carmelo is using magic tricks.

In the same manner, just because there are fake Mona Lisas doesn’t mean there is no original, genuine Mona Lisa.

Sad but true, when we come down right to it, I’m not competent to tell you if Bro. Carmelo’s phenomenon is genuine or spurious.

I have not yet done my due dilligence on these claims, so I will keep my conjectures to myself.

Stay magical,


As always, I want to close this entry with a wish to believers, skeptics, magicians, Filipino or not…stay magical everyone.