So how do you know if you've found a Holy Stone? It has to be a stone, not a shell. And it must have a hole that runs clean through the stone. When you find your own Holy Stone, keep it near you for protection.
Fairy Crosses are stones shaped like a cross. They are typically found in the Blue Ridge Mountains and across North West America. They've also been found in Brazil, France, Italy and Scotland. Also known as Staurolite Crystals, Fairy Crosses are made of iron aluminate silicate crystals and have an unknown origin. Some believe they were formed between 60 and 500 million years ago, but a more popular story says the Fairy Crosses were formed when the fairies learned Christ had been crucified and their tears hardened into Fairy Crosses.
They are said to protect the wearer from disease and are known to bring good luck, good fortune and in some cases to grant wishes.
There are three types of Fairy Crosses to look out for:
1) The Maltese Cross -- a perfectly formed cross and very difficult to find
2) St. Andrews Cross -- made with an angled line
3) The Prismatic Cross -- most easily found
To clean your Fairy Cross, wash it with soap and water and soak it overnight in mineral oil to restore its natural shine.
When I was in the library this week with my daughters, I came across an old book with tales of ghosts in the mountains of North Carolina. I checked it out because it had a chapter called Fairy Crosses. Isn't it funny how that happens? I'd never heard of Fairy Crosses until just this month, and now I keep stumbling across references to them. The book told the story of a sad, lonely man who worked for an elderly couple in the mountains of North Carolina helping out around the farm. One night he finally told them why he was so sad and lonely. His wife was from a communist country, and after she had her children here in the States, she wanted to bring them home to meet her family. This they did and had a lovely time. But when the family tried to leave the country, officials there would only let the husband leave. (The book was published in the 1960's and didn't date this particular story, but it must have been during the Cold War.) He tried all he could to get his family to return but luck was never on his side. Paperwork got lost and his name kept getting sent to the back of the line. The older couple felt bad for the man and said they would pray for him. That night, after telling his story, he prayed too. When he awoke, there was a Fairy Cross in his hand. He showed it to the elderly couple and they became very excited. "You've been blessed," the old man explained. "The fairies are watching out for you." The lonely man thought it was nothing more than superstition, and so he slipped the stone in his pocket and went back to work. But that night, he got a call from his wife. By some miracle, they had been allowed to return to the States and she and the children were waiting for him to pick them up at the airport.
The book gave no more details and didn't mention the family's name, but it's still a great story and one that reminds us to never give up, to keep having faith, praying and believing.
I hope you all find your own Holy Stones and Fairy Crosses on your travels, and if so, share your story here!