— What the Virgin told you about pride and humility . . . did you receive that together with the message?
— No. She said it on another occasion: What God loves most is humility; what most displeases Him is pride.
— Would you like to see the Virgin again?
— It's all the same to me. I hope to see her in heaven.
— Why do you talk that way?
— It would be painful for me now because of my denials . . .
They discussed the article in La Gaceta Ilustrada:
— It was not — Conchita remarked — a game of ours, nor did we do it to deceive. Nor did the pastor talk to us about guardian angels on that day. He almost never gave us catechism. Nor did we get together in order to make up the message . . . Nor did I prepare any dough to make the host for the Communion . . .
It's true that we did many stupid things too, that Cardinal Ottaviani read to me in Rome (10) from a report by the bishop of Santander. For example, the thing about the powders, the statue of the Virgin that we were going to hide, and some other things . . .
To inspire her, the Sister talked to Conchita about how much Our Lord and the Virgin loved her.
— Yes. But They love everyone. When we were talking to the Virgin about things that were too personal, she didn't answer us; she was concerned about others.
Conchita had decided to celebrate this month of the Virgin better than ever. On this day she met with the Sister and told her:
— If the Virgin would present herself to me now, how many things I would ask her! At the time, we only said stupid things to her, things without importance. I think that we did it to make her stay longer so that she wouldn't leave us, for at times she remained silent and didn't look at us.
— Do you think about the mysteries when you pray the rosary?
— No. I give my attention to what I'm saying in prayer.
When I hear the Virgin talked about, whatever is said good or bad, I think is said to me, since I consider her something mine.
The Virgin is very much with us; she isn't distant . . .
One day she gave me a statement to tell a certain priest; I gave it to him and he wept very much.
(Here the Sister added that the husband of one of her former students had recounted how Conchita had spoken personally to him in Garabandal about
something very hidden in his conscience, and that this had made him resolve to change his way of life.)
By a telephone call from Francisco Sánchez-Ventura the Sister had received news that the Bishop of Santander had just been killed in a tragic accident; the Sister told it to Conchita, who was overcome and later broke out in tears.
— I am so sorry about what has happened! He was very good and very young. The poor man! He did everything with good intentions. Isn't that true? This warns us that we must be prepared. So many things can happen to us in this life! . . . Now
the Bishop knows everything.
The apparitions were discussed. Sister asked:
— Why did you fall on the ground?
— We were not aware of that; we were with the Virgin! And we followed the conversation or communication with her, without knowing if we were running or not, if we were on our knees or lying on the ground.
The Sister makes a note here: A few days previously Father Laffineur had come and asked me how Conchita looked to me. I answered: “Simple, natural, candid, intelligent. So normal and well-balanced that I could certify that in my profession as a teacher I haven't known another like her." I also told him that I didn't find a very strong will in her.
— The Virgin didn't tell me that she didn't want me to leave the village and be in school.
— Our greatest treasure is within. The external appearance doesn't matter much; it should be made agreeable, but without affectation.
— I understand, and I see that you are right. We told the Virgin that we wanted to be beautiful like her . . . But she smiled and was silent. If she had conceded it to us to have her face! How the people would have looked at us! She is so beautiful!
— At times you did strange things in front of her.
— Yes, we walked sitting down for example. In the beginning I was very surprised in seeing this in the others; afterwards I became accustomed to it. I saw them descend a steep stairway this way.
I recall once having a knee injury. The doctor ordered rest, but I didn't take care of the knee. And it didn't hurt after that. Without taking a treatment, I had a complete cure.
They said that on another occasion I had left blood on a stone; but later I didn't notice anything on my knees, except a little scratch.
— In some of those things, did you add something of your own invention?
— Doesn't it seem to you that some of your little deceits, on top of seeing your present doubts, could contribute in some way to cloud the truth?
— It is very possible that could be. Don't think that I haven't thought about it.
Conchita passed the summer in her village, with the exception of the last half of August when she was back again at school. In October she returned to Burgos to begin the 1967-1968 school year.
— Have you noticed what day it is today? We should do something more in prayer. Shall we stay in prayer this night? . . . What happened on this day in 1961?
— We announced the first message. We had already seen it beneath the Angel; but we didn't understand what it meant. The Virgin explained it to us . . .
On December 22nd, Aniceta came to Burgos to pick up her daughter. She had not come to take her back only for the Christmas vacation; she was taking her back permanently. There had been strong exterior influences and pressures that caused this.
On one of the last visits Conchita told the Sister:
— From time to time I see more clearly that what happened to the four of us girls was true, but we wasted it . . . Our denials are our own doing. Sometimes, although very briefly, I see this very clearly.
And the Sister closed the long chapter of her remembrances of the extraordinary closeness to the child of the Montaña with these lines:
I give thanks to the Most Holy Virgin for everything. Whether she has appeared or not at Garabandal, I have been moved in everything by their love, and certainly all this has brought me to love her more and to feel closer to her.
May this be the final result for everyone, while we continue to revolve between the light and the shadows of . . .
10. When she was called there in December, 1966.