The Legend of the Disappearing Graves at St. Thomas University
Turns out Tik Tok can be a pretty spooky place this time of year. I was scrolling through my feed and came across a video detailing the story of the disappearing gravestones at St. Thomas University in St. Paul.
Allegedly, there are 13 graves that sit along a path near the seminary at St. Thomas University. 12 of the graves belong to nuns that once lived there, and the 13th belongs to the priest who murdered them. He later committed suicide due to the guilt of what he had done. His stone reads "Condemnation" while the nuns' have their Latin names.
The urban legend that goes along with these graves is where it really gets creepy. The legend says that each time you pass the graves along the trail, you will count a different number of white stone crosses. They appear and disappear each time you pass by. The person who shared this legend on Tik Tok said it was true for them, they counted 13 on the way in, and only 9 on the way back.
In researching this urban legend online, I couldn't find any articles more recent than a 2012 book titled "Twin Cities Haunted Handbook". The book goes into further detail on the legend, saying the priest went crazy and raped 12 of the nuns he worked with, and while they didn't tell anyone, he couldn't go to work and face his victims every day, so he killed them one by one and buried them in a ravine leading to the Mississippi. When they were all dead he killed himself in the ravine as well.
And it turns out a legend is all this ghost story is. It isn't true, ad the stones aren't graves at all, but instead prayer stations symbolizing the stations of the cross. The Latin at the bottom of the stones aren't the names of the nuns, they are the stations written in Latin. Some of the stations are missing, broken, or hard to find, explaining why people miscount them when walking on the trail.
While this wasn't the site of a murderous priest, it hasn't stopped people from feeling uneasy as they walk the trail, and reporting hearing a man screaming and sobbing. I'll let you visit and be the judge on whether this place is haunted or not.
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