Concerning the spectators in Garabandal we can add this curious bit of information that Father Ramón gives us:
«In the beginning, during the first month and a half after June 18th, something happened three or four times that presented a characteristic of great originality.
On coming out of the trance, the girls said, The Virgin said that Sari and Mari Carmen(17) should come together with us; the others should be far away so that they don't hear what we say. Then the visionaries went up to the Pines(18) and went into ecstasy in front of the young witnesses who were able to move as they pleased among the visionaries. These witnesses were six years old.
On one occasion the people sought to change one of these for another older girl about twelve years of age. But the Virgin told them not to do so — they were to be the ones that she had mentioned. We were able to ask these child witnesses what the visionaries were saying, but they were barely able to repeat some of the words that they had heard, much less understand their significance. It seems that all this corresponded to the days in which the Virgin was manifesting a secret to the girls. Only concerning one of these ecstasies was a young witness able to explain anything to us. They said that she shouldn't tell us bad things (meaning what frightens or terrifies). That she shouldn't make us cry, that the things are sad. The little children didn't understand anything more. At times they became bored and came to us saying, They're crying.»
«The interpretation of this seems to be that Father Valentín, the parish priest, should have a control from afar — through the witnesses — of what was happening in the trances, without hearing what the children were saying.»
We have desired to measure things too much by reason, too much by the light of human science in that which is far above our understanding, and which can only be obtained by humility and simplicity of heart. For it is written:
I will destroy the wisdom of the wise,
and the prudence of the prudent, I will reject . . .
Has not God made foolish the wisdom of this world ? . . .
But the foolish things of the world has God chosen
that He may confound the wise.
And the weak things of the world has God chosen,
that He may confound the strong,
And the base things of the world
and the things that are contemptible has God chosen;
and things that are not,
that he might bring to naught things that are.
That no flesh should glory in His sight. (1 Cor. 1: 19-29)
17. Sari is Loli's sister; her complete name is María Rosaura. Mari Carmen is Jacinta's sister.
18. The Pines are one of Garabandal's holy places. There are nine pine trees without other trees in the area; they are on a high plain above the city, and are the first thing that is seen, together with St. Michael's chapel, when one comes up the road from Cossío to San Sebastián.
The nine Pines of our history are what remains of the small planting of pine and oak trees that had been done many years ago on the slope of Mount Hormazo. This was brought about by an agreement between the pastor of the village, Fr. Angel Cossío Vélez and the mayor, Serafín González, Conchita's paternal grandfather. It seems that the occasion was theFirst Communion of the children from the parish, and that the priest gave the Church's blessing to this small planting of trees. The trees were planted by the children from the village, and the affair took on a festive air even to the composition of verses which the children sang; one of these is:
Come you little children to plant the trees.
And let each one of us plant here.
At the time who would imagine the phenomena to which that location and those trees would serve as a backdrop!