My Disappearing Tumor Story

By Rosario Cosme-Mendoza

Tumor Story


On 18 December 1948, I gave birth to my youngest child, Maria Socorro Mendoza (now Ma. Socorro Mendoza-Dichoso). During that time, my husband Dr. Telesforo J. Mendoza was still alive. He was the chief of the Department of Neurosurgery at the University of Santo Tomas (UST) Hospital and was professor of Neuro-Anatomy at the UST College of Medicine.

At the time of Socorro’s birth, my husband discovered that she had a soft tumor on the left side of the head (frontal-parietal region). After a week of observation, my husband and I noticed that Socorro‘s tumor was getting bigger. We then got alarmed because my husband earlier thought it was a simple case of superficial hemorrhage common to newly-born babies.

A more detailed medical test revealed that Socorro’s head tumor was a case of deficient ossification of the cranium leading to the protrusion of the membranes of the cerebrum containing the cerebrospinal fluid. To confirm this finding, my late husband requested the late Dr. Paulino J. Garcia, chief of UST Hospital’s Radiology Department, to take a series of X-rays on Socorro’s head or skull. The X-ray pictures gravely confirmed the previous medical findings. We felt almost sure we were going to lose Socorro to this disease.

Sometime in January 1949, more than a month after Socorro’s birth, I decided to go to the Lipa Carmel convent to beg for prayers to the Sisters. News abounded that the Blessed Virgin Mary had been appearing to the Lipa Carmelite postulant, Teresita Castillo under the title ”Mediatrix Of All Grace” and that there had been frequent miraculous showers of rose petals within and outside the premises of the cloister.

Upon my arrival at Lipa, I was gladly given an audience by the late Carmelite Prioress Mary Cecilia of Jesus, OCD. I poured out to her all the anguish and anxiety of a mother who dreaded the inevitability of the death of her child.

The Prioress Mary Cecilia advised me to say a novena to Our Lady, Mary Mediatrix of All Grace. She instructed Sis. Elizabeth of the Sacred Heart, OCD to give me a copy of the novena and a rose petal that purportedly came from one of the miraculous showers.

I left Lipa Carmel buoyed up by the hope that the Blessed Mother would pity and assist my child Socorro. When I reached home, I immediately rushed to the room where Socorro was sleeping. She looked bluish black as if short of breath. Her condition made me panic. I started gently massaging the rose petal over her head while saying the novena. After five minutes she started to cry. My husband who was beside me said that the crying was a good sign.

On the fourth day of my novena, after the usual examination of Socorro’s head, my husband noticed that the tumor was suddenly gone. There was a definite cleavage of the skull cavity previously the result of deficient ossification.

Because of this unexplained medical development, my late husband requested Dr. Paulino J. Garcia to conduct another set of x-rays on Socorro’s skull. Truly, the x-ray films showed no more trace of the tumor!

My entire family attributed Socorro’s sudden cure to Mary, Mediatrix of All Grace. As a gesture of loving gratitude to her, we went on a pilgrimage together with our Paco parish priest, the late Fr. Godofredo Aldenhuisen, CICM to the Lipa Carmel convent in the summer of 1949. We brought along Socorro who had since become a healthy and normal baby.

The late Chief Justice Manuel V. Moran of the Supreme Court got very interested in Socorro’s case. He took all the x-ray films (before and after the disappearance of the tumor) from us including the child’s medical history for submission to the Vatican in support of the cause of Mary Mediatrix of all Grace. Since then and up to the present, my family does not know what happened to those x-ray films.


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