A folktale from Austrian Tirol region
It was year 1392. The great Lady of the heaven had sent an angel to Tyrol – in Waldrast on Serlesberg to be precise. He stepped in front of a concave step of Lerchenstock and spoke to it taking the name of the Blessed Mother:
“The picture of the Lady of the heaven should bloom on you.”
In course of time a picture grew on the step. Two pious shepherd boys, namely Hänsle and Peterle from the village called Mizens first saw it in 1407. The astonished boys rushed down to the peasants in the field; said, “Go to the mountain. There is something amazing on the concave floor. We did not dare to touch it.”
The holy picture was now recognized, removed from the stone wall with a saw, and immediately brought to Matrei – which was then called Burg Matrey. It stood in the same place until a church was built on its own for Waldrast. God entrusted the task of building it to a poor woodcutter named Lusch from Matrey.
On one Whitsunday, the wood carver lied on his bed and slept like he does every night.
He heard a voice from somewhere. It asked: “Are you asleep or awake?” He thought he was dreaming; hence didn’t reply. The voice asked him the same once, twice and thrice! The third time he realized he was awoke and asked: “Who are you? What do you want?”
The voice said, “You will have to curve a chapel in the honour of the Waldrast.”
The wood-carver said, “I will not do that.” He heard nothing after that.
But the voice returned on the other night of Whitsunday, and spoke to him as before. This time the wood carver said, “I’m too poor to do that.” This time too, the voice didn’t speak anything else.
But the voice came back again on the third night of Whitsunday close to his bed. It uttered the same lines as before. The man could not sleep out of worries three nights; now he heard “How do you think you will not let me have my chapel?” Then it preached again: “You shall do it.” The man repeated like he did before: “I will not do it.”
Someone lifted the wood carver and threw him straight up into the air saying: “You shall do it now as I order you so!”
The man thought, “Oh, poor me! What can I do now? I have to tell that I will do, right?” He told that he wanted to do it but only in the location which he would find to be the perfect one.
The voice said: “In the forest there is a green patch of mosses. You will have to lie down there and rest; then only the right place will be made known to you.”
The wood carver got up, went to the forest, found the green patch inside, lay down on the moss to take rest there. (That is why the forest is named Waldrast – meaning Forest where wood carver had taken rest). As he fell asleep, he heard two chimes in his sleep. When he woke up, he saw a church standing before him on the green patch. He also caught the sight of a lady in white holding a child in her arm for a moment.
Now he admitted, “O God almighty! This must be the right place.” He moved to the spot where he had seen the picture and began measuring the spot where he was supposed to build a church. He heard the bell ringing till he was marking, but no more after his marking was over.
Still in despair, he called, “Tell me God, how I shall complete the task? I am so poor – do not have a manor that I can spend for this kind of a construction.”
The known voice spoke to him again, “Go to the pious people. They will donate you more than enough for this. It will take long 36 years to be prepared for consecration. After all those procedure, it will become a great symbol of piousness for eternity.”
Before starting the task of building the chapel, the man went to his confessor father and found him to be the patron, who sent him to the Bishop Ulrich gen Brixen. In fact he visited the Bishop five times to get the permission to build the church and the chapel. Finally on a Tuesday before the day of Saint Pancratius in the year 1409 the Bishop approved it and he finished his mission.
The wood carver got the permission only the moment before he had completed the assignment. The church and chapel remained a miracle of the god for ever.
(The almighty asks for submission – and every poor soul has to submit before God’s will forced by God if not abiding on his own. The moral of the story is the moral of almost all religions, but Christianity in Europe attached this kind of stories with places, indicating spreading the religion in entire Europe was not an easy task. In fact it took years to convert each of its regions to Christian belief. Language of the original story says that this version was developed in medieval era)