The long-awaited addition to the Miraculous Medal took place early Dec. 29 at the Rotundini of St. Padre Pio at St. Anthony Church, 225 Park Ave., Monongahela.
Several parishioners hoisted two 100-pound, cast-iron hearts and mounted them onto the steel crossbar to complete the project.
It is an enlarged replica of the Miraculous Medal given to Sister Catherine Laboure on Nov. 27, 1830, in Rue du Bac near Paris, France, according to parishioner Pat Polachek.
On that day, the Virgin Mary appeared to Sister Catherine in the chapel and requested a medal be struck to signify the conception that miraculously took place without sin so Jesus could be born, she added.
The cross symbolizes Christ. The bar beneath it is a sign of the earth. The hearts represent those of Jesus and Mary.
For use in the project, parishioner Regis Leach Jr. wove vines and thorns taken from a large hawthorn tree at St. Anthony.
It is believed the crown of thorns Jesus wore was fashioned from a hawthorn tree in the Holy Land, Polachek said.
The Immaculate Heart of Mary features gold roses, each symbolic of The Seven Sorrows of Mary, Polachek said.
The project began in February as Regis …