What could the girls have seen to break out like this with the shrill shrieks and screams that terrified everyone?
María Herrero de Gallardo, in Garabandal several months later, spoke with Loli on Sunday, October 7th, the feast of the Holy Rosary. She questioned Loli, among other things, about what the girls had seen during the feast of Corpus Christi:
«Oh!»—exclaimed the girl—«That was horrible to see. We were really frightened. And I know no words that will explain it.»
We saw rivers change into blood . . . Fire fell down from the sky. . . And something much worse still, which I’m not able to reveal now.
The message that we gave at the time said that we don’t expect the Chastisement, but that, without expecting it, it will come . . .
The Virgin asked everyone to confess and receive Communion.»
The girl did not say many words; what her few words said was enough.
In 1970 Fernando Corteville wrote in issue N°31 of the L’Impartial about the messages of the 19th and 23rd of June, 1962 — up to then unpublished — that Mari Loli had verified and presented to Mrs. Saraco.(13) Three years previously, these messages had been given to Father Morelos.(14) The girls had received them when they had seen visions of the Chastisement.
According to the text that Mrs. Saraco had in her possession (signed by the visionary), Loli said this to Father Morelos:
screams’) we began to see a great multitude of people
who were suffering intensely, and screaming with tremendous
fear . . .
The Most Holy Virgin explained to us that
this great tribulation — which was not the Chastisement
— would come because a time would arrive
when the Church would give the impression
of being on the point of perishing . . . It would
pass through a terrible test. We asked the Virgin
what this great test was called and she told us that
it was Communism.
Then she showed us how the great Chastisement
for all mankind would come, and that it would come
directly from God . . .
There will come a time when all motors and
machines will stop; a terrible wave of heat will
strike the earth and men will begin to feel a great
thirst. In desperation they will seek water, but this
will evaporate from the heat . . . Then almost
everyone will despair and they will seek to kill one
another . . . But they will lose their strength and
fall to the earth. Then it will be understood that it
is God alone Who has permitted this.
Then we saw a crowd in the midst of flames.
The people ran to hurl themselves into the lakes and
seas. But the water seemed to boil and in place of
putting out the flames, it seemed to enkindle them
It was so horrible that I asked the Most Holy
Virgin to take all the young children with her(15)
before all this happened. But the Virgin told us that
when it would come, they would all be adults . . .
This is startling, shocking. It should make every person reflect on his salvation. But I am afraid for many . . . The charismatics of optimism do not see more in the actual situation of the Church today, in its convulsions, than a crisis of growth. They detect with certainty (I don’t know by what signs) the coming of a new springtime. And they regard everything that has just been mentioned as an erroneous prophecy. An erroneous prophecy from outdated medieval prophets
The true prophets were sent to communicate to the people of God, time and time again, what it was necessary for them to know. And it cannot be denied that we have needed — more than once — the sternest warnings and corrections.
The words of the prophecy itself distinguish the false from the true prophet . . . It is clear that the people of God do not like to hear certain matters, even though they are conducive to their salvation, and their guides like to hear them even less. It was the same in Israel in the days of Jeremiah the prophet. The insistence on reform by that prophet of doom did not please the Israelites; they preferred instead the pleasant predictors of a prosperous future. But it is well known what then happened.
We can well imagine how the feast of Corpus Christi, the great feast of the Eucharist, was celebrated in Garabandal during that year of grace, 1962, after such a vigil and after such reception of the sacrament of Penance.
No one missed the solemn Mass and almost everyone received Communion. Later, during the procession of the Blessed Sacrament through the cleaned and garlanded streets of the village, there resounded the traditional hymns of homage to the hidden God in the Blessed Sacrament.
As if for the purpose of directing all attention toward the mysteries celebrated on that day, the visionaries did not present any spectacle.
«Mari Cruz went to the Cuadro»—Fr. Valentín wrote—«she went there in the natural state, and on arriving, knelt down and went into ecstasy; but she didn’t say anything . . . The other girls didn’t have an apparition.»
The following day, Friday, there was no apparition at all. But on the next day, Saturday, June 23rd, came the final statement from the nights of the screams; the second message from Loli and Jacinta(16) bears this date:
That the world continues the same, that it has
not changed at all;
That few will see God; so few they are, that it is
causing the Virgin great sorrow.
How unfortunate it is that the world does
The Virgin has told us that the Chastisement
As the world is not changing, the cup is filling
How sorrowful is the Virgin, although she does
not allow us to see it.
Since the Virgin loves us so much, she suffers
alone, since she is so good.
Everyone be good, so that the Virgin will be
She has told us that those who are good should
pray for those who are evil.
Yes, we should pray to God for the world, for
those who do not know Him.
Be good, be very good.
María Dolores Mazón, 13 years
Jacinta González, 13 years
13. Mrs. Carmela Saraco is a promoter of the cause of Garabandal in the U.S.A.
14. Father Gustavo Morelos, a Mexican, played a great part in the pro-Garabandal movement following the events. He came to Spain toward the end of 1964, with the proper authorization of his ecclesiastical superiors, as he himself stated in writing in 1965, to study the apparitions of the Most Holy Virgin in the in the village of San Sebastián de Garabandal.
First he collected all the information of a negative type that the Commission at Santander could give him, with a result that could be imagined. But later, on dealing directly with the visionaries and on hearing the eyewitnesses, he became convinced that what was occurring in Garabandal could not have any human explanation. Returning to my country, Mexico, I dedicated myself to informing our most excellent prelates . . . with the desire of making known — more than the "events" themselves — the "messages" that the four girls had transmitted to all mankind on behalf of their Vision.
For some time now, due to pressure by the upper ecclesiastical hierarchies (the passionate zeal with which the former bishop from Santander, Bishop Cirarda, attempted to finish with Garabandal between 1968 and 1971 should not be forgotten), he has come to keep silence.
As a tabulation of the actors, the fact can be pointed out here that there was an unusual procession of prelates in the Santander diocese from the beginning of the events of Garabandal. There were six bishops in the first 11 years. They were the following:
Doroteo Fernández Fernández: initially auxiliary bishop with Monsignor Eguino Trecu and afterwards, apostolic administrator; transferred in 1962 to Badajoz.
Eugenio Beitia Aldazábal: in 1962 took possession of the diocese as the titular bishop of Santander; not much later, for reasons not sufficiently known, he presented his resignation. This was accepted, although he continued for some time at the head of the bishopric as the apostolic administrator.
Vicente Puchol Montis: entered into Santander as a new bishop in 1965; he came with great hopes: he was rather young and had recently been promoted. On May 8th of 1967, he died tragically in an automobile accident.
Enrique de Cabo: elected vicar head on the death of Bishop Puchol; he was at the head of the diocese a little more than a year. Not long after finishing his service, he died suddenly.
José María Cirarda: came in the summer of 1968 to Santander as the new bishop; much was expected from him also. In December of 1971 he went to the diocese of Córdoba.
Juan Antonio del Val Gallo: in the winter of 1972, he took possession of the diocese of Santander, to which diocese he belonged and to which he was then returning after a short reign as auxiliary bishop to the archbishop of Seville.
With regard to Garabandal, although these bishops have officially upheld the negative position of the Commission, only two have fought openly against it: Bishop Puchol, who thought he had finished with Garabandal; and Bishop Cirarda, who tried to finish it with all his might . . .
I do not question their good intentions; undoubtedly they thought that they were doing God a good service.
15. It might be noted that Loli had little brothers at that time.
16. The reader can notice that Conchita was not taking a significant part in the important events occurring in Garabandal on the feast of Corpus Christi.