At Last the Angel Speaks
We were very sad, since we thought that we would never again see anything.
Nevertheless the entire reason for the Angel's coming was to communicate what was contained in the writing seen on the last few days; but the girls had not given this the least attention. The letdown and the bitter reaction of disgust, which manifested itself in threatening words from the large crowd that had gone up on those two days with desires of seeing something, contributed to augmenting the unfortunate girls' dejection. No more than prayers had taken place in the calleja. And the crowd had not come precisely to pray. They went home saying, It's obvious! Since there are many of us and the people in Garabandal are not used to this, they didn't dare to do those things in front of us!
The four girls continued doing their work as usual, going to school, and visiting the Blessed Sacrament; but they could not hide the suffering that they carried within.
Their suffering must have been plainly evident, since the good people of the village felt it necessary to console them. Wednesday, June 28th was an ordinary school day.
When we got out, the people in the village, seeing us so sad, wept and kissed us saying:
Pray very much so that he will return!
When evening came, we went to the calleja and did as usual.
The people prayed the rosary with more faith than ever so that he would appear to us.
And on finishing the litany, he appeared to us and came smiling more than ever.
The girls pleaded with many questions, asking above all for him to tell them why he had come.
They obtained only smiles.(31) That is, they received no clarification; but such happiness that the duration of the ecstasy which was an hour, from 9:00 to 10:00 at night, seemed to them a minute or less: So happy were we with him.
The Angel did not make his visit to the girls on Thursday the 29th or on Friday, the 30th.(32)
Faustino González was a cattle raiser and shepherd who lived in the old town of Obeso in the district of Rio Nansa on top of a hill where the ancient tower of the former lords of the area can be seen. However, he went many times to the mountains of Garabandal, for he had a cabin there surrounded by pastures for cattle grazing.
The things that were happening in the village at the time were naturally the subject of conversation between Faustino and the other men who lived in the neighboring barns. On the 29th of June, the last Thursday of the month and a feastday (Sts. Peter and Paul), they decided to go see what was happening. They were a group of ten or eleven, and by their crude dress and manner of traveling they appeared to be coming more to ridicule than to seek devotion. It could hardly have come into their minds that heaven would concern itself with insignificant creatures like the children of Aniceta, Ceferino, Simón and Escolástico.
In the village the people gathered at the Calleja at the usual hour, as the sun set beyond the horizon. Our herdsmen did not neglect to take an early place in the first row; thus they could observe what was going on at their leisure.
|Detail of stained glass window depicting Our Lady of Lourdes along with Bernadette Soubirous. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)|
31. Many people find the procedure in apparitions strange. The ways of God are not easily understood. Bernadette Soubirous, the visionary at Lourdes, (the Garabandal children knew nothing of Lourdes) said to P. Gondrand in a letter in 1861, "She didn’t say a word until the third time she appeared to me." And at Lourdes there were many fewer apparitions than at Garabandal.
32. Perhaps it was during the apparitions on this day, the last Friday of the month of the Sacred Heart, that Jacinta saw Our Lord «standing on what appeared to be a little white cloud, showing a bright red heart on the left side of His chest, from which white and gold rays irradiated.» He did not speak to the girl. But with a gesture of His left hand, He presented her His heart, while motioning with His right hand for her to come near. Jacinta obeyed, and was overwhelmed by the beauty and splendor of His garments, and even more by His person . . . His brilliance was much superior to that which she had seen in the Angel, and even superior to that which she would later see in the Virgin.
Jacinta’s vision took place in the Calleja, while her three companions, kneeling at her side, were looking at St. Michael. The vision lasted only, (or so it seemed to her) a few moments, but it left an indelible impression on her, although she kept completely silent about it for many years.
In the vision, two things especially impressed her: Jesus’ look, and His majestic bearing.
His glance penetrated to the depths of her soul. She could not bear it for a long time! Nevertheless, the Lord’s look «was full of immense love.»
As for His supremely majestic bearing, it should not be forgotten that Jesus is The Lord, before Whom every knee should bend of those in the heavens, on earth, and under the earth. (Phil. 2: 9-10)