Besides this interesting report, we have another report from the same witness which also relates to those summer days of August, and which once more shows us the girls in close intimacy with the Mother.
«In front of his house Ceferino told me to go up immediately to the Pines, since Mari Cruz had already been some time in ecstasy. On this day there was a group of pilgrims assembled up there around the girls, listening to Mari Cruz say to the Vision, Ah! Then it is a Dominican Father who is here dressed as a civilian. (This fact is certain since later in the evening the religious himself, about 30 years old, told me that he was very impressed since he had not revealed to anyone either his condition or his identity.)
When I arrived, Mari Cruz gave the Vision a large number of rosaries and medals to kiss— perhaps more than one hundred. At the same time she began a backward descent toward the village . . . It would have to be seen: sometimes slowing down her walk; at others, speeding up with extreme swiftness, barely touching the ground with her feet, and then only slightly.
Halfway down the path near the Cuadro, Loli and Jacinta, who were accompanying her, went into ecstasy too. And the three, holding hands, walked toward the church, which in those days still was not closed to the visionaries. Before going inside, they made several trips (28) around it, counting out the Hail Marys of the rosary. The crowd around them had become very close together . . .
At that time, Conchita also went into ecstasy. The four joined arms, and in an incredible manner passed through the small door of the church courtyard. I say incredible since the door or gate was not sufficiently wide to permit the passage of the four side by side without either hitting or crushing the girls.
I was able to slip swiftly into the church, and there at my leisure I had the chance to be able to contemplate the stunning entrance into the sacred precinct of the four girls in ecstasy. They did this slowly, with a stiff and rhythmic step, like a military march, that resounded loudly in the silence and darkness of the holy place. They gave quite an impression of force, as Loli in passing barely grazed with her arm one of our friends of considerable size, and knocked her on the ground.(29) I think that all those who were there were seized with a salutary fear. As for me, I confess that I experienced a strong feeling of the fear of God and I was reminded of that part of Scripture that the Church applies to the Virgin, You are beautiful and full of charm, Daughter of Jerusalem, but you are also terrible as an army in battle array.» (30)
Conchita has stated in her diary that in the trances on the days that are now being recounted, the Virgin took special attention to bring the girls, who were lacking human instruction, to a habit of praying with the greatest care and concentration.
She told them to pray the rosary just as on so many other occasions; but in order to instruct them practically on the way of doing this, she told them on Friday, the 18th of August, I am going to pray first, and you should follow me. And she—states the girl—prayed very slowly. The girls then repeated word by word what she said first, trying to copy her manner, tone and pronunciation. The exercise followed completely the usual way of praying the rosary; but, Conchita tells us, very slowly. And at the Salve she told us to sing, and we sang it.
Attention should be given to this: She prayed very slowly. It is not important to do many things, but to do well the things that have to be done. The thing that matters is not the rapid recitation of many prayers, but rather always praying well during the time that is allotted. To give to each deed —especially to conversation with God— the time and attention that it deserves, has to be the style of the one called Full of Grace. It has been said that one cannot act fast and well at the same time. Always acting properly has been the characteristic of the Virgin's life; for this reason, her perfection is unique.
In the French edition of Conchita's Diary we read these lines from Fr. Ramón:
«From the beginning Conchita always said that the Vision made them recite the rosary very often. Sometimes it was chanted, other times simply recited. Also the girls often said it during the ecstatic marches. Then they would be seen stopping at the doorsteps of the houses, or even entering and going upstairs—always in ecstasy— to a sick person's room.»
There are tape recordings of the recitations of these prayers. The Hail Mary is said very slowly in a voice both intense and slightly trembling; the words are pronounced very distinctly. Likewise with the Our Father; Hagase tu voluntad, (Your will be done) is said with special emphasis.
As unusual background music in the tape recordings, underneath the voices of the girls is heard muffled sounds made by the footsteps of the people accompanying them during their mystical marches through the village.
Many observations could be made about what has just been described; but it would be better that these observations be made by each person himself.
Certainly all these particular instructions and reprimands of the Blessed Mother should not be ignored, both for our own good and that of the Church.
On this 18th of August (exactly 2 months having passed since the beginning of the events), not only were salutary lessons given on how to pray well but heaven also presented to the onlookers unusual refrains of music, music not composed by man.
The wife of Dr. Ortiz remembers the day well, as it was the first on which she witnessed something.
28. Many times procession-like marches occurred around the church. These marches show the importance of the sanctuary for meeting with God. And also they indicate the importance of religious practices that many would like to confine to oblivion as if they lacked meaning.
29. It should be taken into account that Loli, during these days, was very diminutive for her age.
We have valuable testimony of the impression that the steps of the girls, rhythmic and strong, made in the silence of the night in the streets of Garabandal, drowning out the confused medley of footsteps made by those who followed while praying.
It should not be forgotten that the Virgin, so kind and charming, is also the Virgo Potens (Virgin Most Powerful) who battles the powers of evil and is capable of destroying, as the Church sings out in her liturgy, all the heresies that have ever been.
30. Related to this is an annotation made by Fr. Valentín for the 5th of August:
«At nine thirty at night, I was in front of the church gate. The children came, and I wanted to stop them. But I wasn't able. The force that they display during their marches is enormous; and though wanting to stop them, one can't, or it is extremely difficult.»