Milan’s Miracle of the Bleeding Child took place on March 25, 1242 at the Church of San Satiro.
‘In 1242 on the day of the Annunciation of Our Lady, a man by the name of Massatio da Vigonzone, who had gambled away everything he owned except for the clothes he was wearing, went in desperation to the Church of San Satiro, and there he saw the fresco of the glorious Mother of God with the young child in her arms, which on the wall of the cemetery near the door of the church. Full of diabolical rage and fury, he stabbed the Christ Child, and then blood miraculously began to flow from the image of our Lord’.
The miracle-making icon became the object of devotion, turning San Satiro into a place of pilgrimage. The dagger is still preserved in the church to this day.
The mid-13th century was high season for Milan’s ‘dagger saints’. Exactly a decade later, in 1252, Carino of Balsamo took his dagger to Saint Peter of Verona (Peter Martyr) along the Como highway. He, too, repented, eventually becoming Blessed Carino . The object of his wrath — the body of Peter Martyr, now in the Portinari Chapel — became an object of regional veneration, just as the 13th century fresco of Madonna and Child, now above the central altar at Santa Maria presso San Satiro, is among the holiest images of the city of Milan.