The residents of West New York — which we’ve always thought was kind of a demeaning name for a town in New Jersey, but okay — are flocking to a thin tree on the sidewalk at 60th Street and Bergenline Avenue, because the tree has an oval shaped splotch on it which, for those predisposed to believing in such things, looks like the outline of the Virgin Mary. The crowds have grown so large that police were forced to put barricades in the middle of the street to shield tree-gawkers from traffic. Hey, whatever gets you through the day.
Skeptics abound, however, including the Newark Archdiocese, whose spokesman, according to the Jersey Journal, suggests that the allegedly miraculous image is "just some discoloration." He added, with what seemed like an unnecessary amount of condescension, “I think it’s more natural to try to encounter God in church, not by expressing your faith to a tree."