We have the following information about this from Father Andreu.
The doctor found the Father sitting on the edge of the bed.
— What are you doing Father?
— As you see, I am trying to get up . . .
— Don't do that! That's foolish. Let's see your ankle . . .
The doctor got down on one knee to examine the ankle better. Then raising his head toward the Father, looking at him in a peculiar way, he said:
— What a comedian you are! Come on, show me the bad ankle.
The priest with apparent indifference showed him the other ankle, which was the good one. The doctor examined it very carefully . . . He compared it with the other . . . and ended up raising his head again toward the Father, while he said with an expression hard to describe,
What strange things happen in this village!
Continuing now with Mr. Förschler's description:
«When the doctors left, Father began to put his shoes on, since he felt no pain . . . He went to stand on his foot, and did it without difficulty. Then he decided to celebrate Mass in the village, declining to advise Father Valentín to come to the village, as we had agreed to do. He ordered the bells to be rung for the Mass, and we set off to search for a cane.
I accompanied him myself to the church. And when he was beginning the celebration — as I did not understand anything about the Mass — I found a place near the last pew and determined to carefully watch from there how he walked on his foot. During the entire ceremony he moved and knelt down, and got up without difficulty.
After the Mass, I told him my observations, and he made various movements and bendings of his foot in front of me without the least trouble; and finally confided to me what had happened. The thing that Jacinta had told him in ecstasy at 3:30 in the morning had been this: Father, the Virgin told me that you were ill; but she told me to tell you that you are cured. At the same time the pains disappeared.»
This also gave Mr. Förschler something to think about; but the thing did not stop there.
On the following day a group of people from Asturías came to Garabandal. It was an ordinary day, Monday, October 16th. An ordinary day on the calendar, but very distinguished in our annals.
As night fell there was an ecstasy, a phenomenon that was never dull . . . not even for those who were seeing it every day. During it the accustomed time arrived for presenting the holy articles that the people wished to be kissed, and then the time for their return to their owners.
In the room where Loli's trance was taking place, a man finally forced himself in. It was the first time that he had been at Garabandal, and he carried in his arms a sick baby who was a heavy cross on his shoulders. The baby was crying. Loli, undoubtedly advised by the apparition, went toward it and — without looking — signed it with a perfect sign of the cross. Immediately the tears stopped and on the convulsing face of the little child an unexpected smile appeared. The father's sad expression softened with emotion, and he said simply, I have never yet seen him smile!
When the ecstasy ended, Mari Loli asked for the sick baby who was carried in his father's arms. She wanted to meet him, since she had not yet seen him, and at the same time she wanted to transmit the message with which she had been charged. She caressed the little baby and said to the father, dwelling slowly on the words, The Virgin told me that you shouldn't worry.
Jacinta — who at the time was in ecstasy in the street, searching for the man who had come — also repeated, on the part of the Virgin the same words of comfort concerning the little baby.(18)
I would have liked to present a follow-up on the outcome with this baby, but up to now I have not been able.
Watching the different facets of that vigil was a large group of spectators, among whom were the Asturians whom we mentioned. These were mainly young boys, but two men among them appeared to be their guides or leaders. One said to the boys, Observe with close attention, and don't let yourself be influenced, because these things . . .
At 10:30 at night they gathered in front of Ceferino's ancient house. Then Conchita came there in ecstasy, drew near, and began to hold out the crucifix to be kissed . . . The two men kept themselves away from her, in order to hide better, went up the outside stairway of a nearby house.(19) However the girl — with her head in a position incredibly tilted backwards, without seeing either them or the stairway — climbed the stairs miraculously and held out the crucifix for them to kiss. The first man shook visibly, and turned his head; but the girl managed to make the sign of the cross on him twice with the holy image. She insisted again that he kiss it and once again the man refused. A third time the girl made the sign of the cross over him with an extreme gentleness in her expression. Only then did the man relent and put his lips on the crucifix! Almost the same thing happened with his companion.
Conchita majestically descended the stairs and went toward the captain of the Civil Guard to give him the holy cross to kiss. Unexpectedly she turned and again walked toward these two men and held the crucifix in front of them. Once again they refused to kiss it! The onlookers were both indignant and scandalized. The girl suddenly came out of the trance, and everyone could see the most obstinate of the two trembling as if he were in pain. He went to hide in a corner where some of the young boys followed him.
— Father X, what has happened?
— Let me alone, let me alone.
Finally he confessed:
— You have seen how I refused the crucifix that the girl offered me . . . Well, after finally kissing it, I mentally asked God for proof: "My Lord, if all this that is happening is truly supernatural, let the girl come to me another time and let her ecstasy stop immediately; thus I will be able to believe." You see what happened. Don't ask me anything more.
Those two men who attracted attention by their attitude were priests; one of them appears to have been a pastor in Turón, the big mining center in Asturías.
Of course we can seek signs from God; but we do not have the right to demand them according to our pleasure. If He condescends, praise be to His name!
In this case there was still more. Conchita, once the ecstasy had ended, had no reason to stay in that spot during the late hours, so she took the street to her home. But she had hardly left the plaza when she went into ecstasy again . . . And once again the people gathered around her. Our difficult priest still desired more than what he had received, and requested in his mind: If the girl comes to me because she knows supernaturally that I am a priest, let her prove it to me, and let her give me the crucifix to kiss again, and let her make the sign of the cross several times over me (something that she had not done with anyone else).
The girl's response to this new and most secret demand was marvelous, satisfying the minister of God who was acting so much like St. Thomas on that unforgettable night in Garabandal.
It is not unusual that God gives even more than what is asked from Him, and this happened to be the man whom no one knew. Seeing other persons offering the girls (at the time of farewell) cards and photographs for them to sign, he also presented one . . . And he could later read a dedication on it with a clear mention of his priestly state.
18. According to Fr. Valentín’s notes, it seems that the episode of the sick child occurred not on the 16th, but rather on the 17th; perhaps during the night between the 16th and the 17th:
«Loli, in ecstasy, went up to a sick child, made the sign of the cross over him several times and gave him the cross to kiss. It was a very moving scene, since the father of the child wept and cried aloud for his cure.»
19. This house was torn down a few years later. It had a staircase with half a dozen stone steps leading up from the street.