Wednesday, June 30, 2010

FRIDAY, APRIL 13, 1962:

A new Sacramental Communion given by St. Michael to Conchita in ecstasy at the Pines, on the Feast of St. Hermenegild, a Martyr of the Eucharist honored as the "Clovis" of Spain . . .
[Excerpted from 'Garabandal' Book, page 130]

{clovis: noun
king of the Franks who unified Gaul and established his capital at Paris and founded the Frankish monarchy; his name was rendered as Gallic 'Louis' (466-511)}
Hermenegild, who lived around the year 550, son of King Leovigild of Visigothic Spain, lived in a milieu very similar to ours. The world he knew was infested with the wicked and subtle heresy of Arianism as today we live in a world which has abandoned God and given itself over to the subtleties and vices of Modernism and Liberalism. Many of the stratagems, deceits, confusion and denials of the True Faith were as present in his time as they are in our own. The consequences of the operation of such factors were as disastrous for the poor souls that he knew as they are for our own friends, family, acquaintances and ourselves. Always present was the need to stand firm against the baleful clamour of the outside world in order to save his own soul and the anxious state that any good soul endures when he sees loved ones led astray on the broad road to Hell. Hermenegild did not begin his earthly pilgrimage as a Catholic. For many years he lived outside of the Church, the only Ark of Salvation, while he practiced the heretical rites of Arianism. His zealous Catholic wife, Indegundis, brought about a profound change in the future martyr. He renounced Arianism and in so doing brought upon his head the kingly anger of his wrathful father who called upon him to surrender all the authority and privileges which the prince enjoyed with his brother Reccared. Unfortunate as it is to mention, the newly converted royal did not meekly lay down the material advantages which being the heir to Arian Visigothic Spain had procured for him and he took up arms against his father and brother. By God's Good Providence Heremenegild was successively beaten in battle, betrayed to his enemies and stripped of all the earthly power and pleasure that he had hoped to enjoy along with the spiritual advantages which his conversion had brought him. Hard was that lesson which Our Lord taught him for did Our Saviour Himself not say "You cannot serve both God and Mammon"?
Hermenegild was reduced in rank and exercise and this would have been the extent of the royal anger had it not been for Leovigild's second wife who prevailed upon him to have his son imprisoned. In the confines of the dungeon to which he was condemned in 586, Hermenegild learnt the true value of his Faith. Not only did the prisoner accept his fate with a submission totally in contrast with his previous warlike manner but he even imposed upon himself further sufferings such as fasting and wearing a hairshirt. Thus little by little the former prince rose above the petty considerations of his earthly state as the state of his own sanctity rose ever higher. Finally there arrived the hour of temptation, of deliverance and of martyrdom. His father sent to him an Arian Bishop to deliver to him Holy Communion, validly consecrated, but from the hands of an Arian heretic, adding that if his son received Holy Communion thus, he would be raised to all his former privileges. The pounding of the noisy world of men reached Hermenegild but faintly now and he rejected with scorn the apostolic emissary of his father. Enraged Leovigild had him instantly executed. The fruits of Hermenegild's heroic suffering and death were destined to flower under his brother Reccared who brought all of Visigothic Spain back into the bosom of Holy Mother Church when he ascended the throne of his deceased father.

No doubt dear friends of Garabandal, that Our Lady is teaching us to persevere and be strong in the Faith, even in our private lives. How many times are we not tempted to render lip service only to the True Faith and to Tradition and not to expose our unmortified flesh to the ridicule of human respect, in our families, our jobs, and even in our church! Not even in the darkness of his living tomb where the public gaze did not fall would Hermenegild forsake his God who he knew saw all things and always and to whom he would have to render a most exacting account. Are we, dear faithful in Christ, equally willing to say to the secular world and all its errors: "Get thee behind me, Satan" or is our faith a chest of cloaks which we change in accordance with the seasons? Saint Hermenegild pray for us that we may each of us meet the temptations of apostasy with that heroic firmness with which you merited the crown of martyrdom and life eternal.
Deacon John

Monday, June 28, 2010


1965, Loli at sixteen with her father, Ceferino


Ceferino, owner of the village Cafe, [father of Mari-Loli] . . . was the father of ten children. On this March 31, 1962, his wife Julia was giving birth, on the first floor, to a little girl, Lupita.
Falling into an ecstasy at that very moment in that same house, Loli learned from the Blessed Virgin that she had just had a baby sister. Then the visionary was heard crying out: 
"what, so small, and "sin" already in her?" Fr. Laffineur himself, present that day at Garabandal, left his precious testimony about that most significant "episode."
This fundamental truth of the Christian Faith, of experience as well, concerning "original sin," was recalled several times with new light in Garabandal, thus prophetically "corroborating" the Teaching of the Magisterium (v.g. John Paul II and his remarkable Catechisis of 1986), often ill-received by many contemporary theologians on such an important matter.
Without going here into the details and the richness of that fundamental doctrine of the Church, we may at least point out that the "sin" of her little sister mentioned to Mari-Loli by the Vision was obviously neither an actual sin, nor a personal one. It is rather, if we refer to the etymology and history of the word "peccatum," a lack, a privation of what, according to God's primary and fundamental intention in creating Man, was due to him at first, that is, a state of righteousness and holiness from which we have been deprived since Adam's personal and original sin. In a parallel manner, however, may we recall that the mystery of the universal economy of Grace, past as well as actual, extends to every human being, baptized or not, in History, thus since the Fall itself, although in quite different ways and without any religious syncretism whatsoever!
[From 'Garabandal' Book, page 129]

An amazing excerpt on "original sin", which I'm sure will give us a lot to think about. Yes, the Church still teaches that every person born after the Fall has original sin on their souls, and that the Sacrament of Baptism cleanses us of it and make us members of the Body of Christ, sons and daughters of God the Father, brothers and sisters of Jesus Christ; and receiving the Holy Spirit as priests, prophets, and kings; we also become the children of Mary, who is the Mother of the Church! Wow! What dignity this one Sacrament bestows on us. Can we thank God enough for this great grace?

Unfortunately, there were and are some in the Church who teach errors regarding this blessed Sacrament, even denying "Original Sin"! That's why we must always be united with the Pope and those bishops who are united with him; there only you will find the Truth and be protected from the errors being taught.

As for those who are not members of the Church through baptism, remember that there is three forms of baptism:
1. Baptism by water.
2. Baptism by desire.
3. Baptism by blood.
Only God saves and knows what is in each persons heart. Hopefully, every person, who loves God, will be saved through desire or giving their life for another, through blood!!! Each day I say a little prayer for the unborn who have been aborted: "By the blood they have shed, may they be baptized in the Name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, and be granted eternal salvation through the Precious Blood of Jesus!"  
Deacon John

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Check This Out from

"Dear Sons and Daughters," is the latest message. "I am your mom and I come from Heaven to offer you my love. Be docile and imitate my Jesus in everything. I need each one of you. Don't back away. Humanity lives in a time worse that the time of the Flood, and my poor children are going as blind leading the blind. I suffer because of what awaits you. Pray much in front of the Cross. Don't be stuck in sin, rather, return to Him Who is your one and true Savior. You are heading towards a future of great trials. I want to tell you that you are the chosen people of God and He expects much from you. When all seems lost, a great victory of God will occur for you. Humanity will find peace when the devil is defeated. In the great triumph of my Immaculate Heart, the enemy of God will never again act against the chosen people of The Lord. You will see a new heaven and a new earth. Joy will reign forever in all hearts, and God will be the only Lord of His people.  Don't get away from prayer. Only by prayer will you understand the plans of God for you. Nothing and no one is lost. The time of your liberation is coming close. Listen to me and I will lead you to Him Who is your Way, Truth, and Life. Fear not. I will be at your side. This is the message I transmit to you in the name of the Most Holy Trinity. Thank you for permitting me to reunite you here once more. I bless you in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Most Holy Spirit. Amen. Be in peace."

Is there peace from these messages?

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

SUNDAY, MARCH 25, 1962:


A sheer wonder as well was this Feast of the "Annunciation" (or "Incarnacion del Senor," as it is still called, and rightly so, in Spain) in the little village of San Sebastian de Garabandal.
From 9:30 p.m. until midnight, Conchita, Mari-Loli and Jacinta, in ecstasy,sang the entire Rosary for the first time! They added several verses, that the Blessed Virgin inspired them to sing, to the traditional announcements of the different mysteries, including several short stanzas from the Ave Maria of Fatima. Always in ecstasy, the girls invited the people to join them in their singing. They rejoiced over the number of people accompanying them, and exclaimed:
"Ah, how happy the Blessed Virgin is! How she is smiling, and how she is looking at all of us!"
The stanzas 3, 4, 5 and 6 were taken, as we said, from the Ave Maria of Fatima.
The "three times" to which the children refer in the seventh stanza were obviously corresponding to the apparitions of the Blessed Virgin Mary at 
Lourdes, at Fatima and at Garabandal. By virtue of the traits and accent proper to each of these "Three greatest public Marian apparitions," we can already observe how Lourdes is related to the Joyful Mysteries, Fatima to the Sorrowful Mysteries, and Garabandal to the Glorious Mysteries of the Rosary. A truly admirable "spiritual logic"!
Translation of a few stanzas sung by the visionaries in ecstasy:
[From 'Garabandal' Book, page 128]

What a powerful day for the girls and for us! There is so much truth in this apparition on the Feast of the Annunciation. Just meditating on the fact that Jesus was conceived in Mother Mary's womb on this day, His humanity began by the power of the Holy Spirit in the Mystery of the Incarnation.
When I pray this Mystery of the Rosary, I always join the two together, Annunciation and Incarnation. The Spanish are right, this Feast should be called the "Incarnacion del Senor"!

Pause a moment and re-read those stanzas. How beautiful and enlightening they are! There's some powerful lessons to be learned from these children of Garabandal!!!
Deacon John

Monday, June 21, 2010

MONDAY, MARCH 19, 1962:

A discreet illustration of the "presence" of St. Joseph at San Sebastian de Garabandal: on the liturgical Feast of "the greatest of all saints," Mari-Loli, in ecstasy, addressed (in the wonderful night of March 18 to 19), the following short word to Fr. Jose Silva, who had just gone up to the village for the first time: "The Blessed Virgin wishes a happy birthday to Padre Jose." This happened when no one had recognized the priest "dressed in lay clothes."
[Excerpted from 'Garabandal' Book, page 125]

St. Joseph Day (March 19) is very popular where I come from (New York City). There's a beautiful custom that the Italian people have. They bring home made bread, called St. Joseph bread, to church and the priest blesses the small round loaves, and these are given to the poor. I miss all that.

The girls had a special gift to be able to tell when a priest or medical doctor came to the village dressed in lay clothes and unknown to anyone. They boldly went up to them to say hello and ask for a blessing. When asked about medical doctors, they said they have the gift of healing and are picked by God for their vocation, just as a priest is called and picked by God to heal souls. Very interesting!

Of course everyone knows that Jose is Spanish for Joseph, that's why the girls wished him a happy birthday. We are supposed to celebrate our patron saint, whom we were named after. Mine is Saint John the Evangelist; which Saint is your patron?
Deacon John

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Garabandal Second Message Video

Spanish television film footage from June 18, 1965, of the apparition when St. Michael appeared to Conchita and gave Mary's second and final Formal Message.

Friday, June 18, 2010


At the time of the apparitions at Garabandal, the Most Blessed Virgin Mary instructedthe visionaries that she desired her message made known to the world…

October 18, 1961We must make many sacrifices, perform much penance, and visit the Blessed Sacrament frequently. But first, we must lead good lives. If we do not, a chastisement will befall us. The cup is already filling up, and if we do not change, a very great chastisement will come upon us.
June 18, 1965—As my message of October 18 has not been complied with and has not been made known to the world, I am advising you that this is the last one. Before, the cup was filling up. Now it is flowing over. Many cardinals, many bishops and many priests are on the road to perdition and are taking many souls with them. Less and less importance is being given to the Eucharist. You should turn the wrath of God away from yourselves by your efforts. If you ask His forgiveness with sincere hearts, He will pardon you. I, your mother, through the intercession of Saint Michael the Archangel, ask you to amend your lives. You are now receiving the last warnings. I love you very much and do not want your condemnation. Pray to us with sincerity and we will grant your requests. You should make more sacrifices. Think about the passion of Jesus.

San Sebastian de Garabandal is a remote mountain village in the Cantabrian Mountains
of Spain. Between 1961 and 1965, the Most Blessed Virgin Mary appeared over two thousand times to four young girls of this village under the title of Our Lady of Mount Carmel. Most prominent among Our Lady’s works were:

            i. The Message, given in two parts, to be made known throughout the world.
ii. The disclosure of major prophecies of unprecedented scope and importance to the Church and the world.
iii. Our Lady’s personal instruction of the four seers in the virtues and devotions of Christian life, indicating the value Heaven places on such practices and their continued importance in the life of the post-councilor Church.

These works were attested throughout by an abundance of supernatural prodigies, conversions and miraculous healings. The events of Garabandal remain under investigation by the Roman Catholic Church.  For more information on these topics please visit

June 18th, 2010
New York Center Update:
Dear Friends,
The Message of Garabandal is hope for a world in crisis. The “signs” of this crisis are made manifest in varied ways around the world but they are impossible to ignore. Each subsequent dilemma demonstrates the frailty of secular power when it fails to invoke the assistance of Almighty God.
In his Urbi et Orbi address given on Easter Sunday 2010, Our Holy Father Benedict XVI, spoke of the “profound crisis” in which the world presently finds itself. He advises us that the best way out is to turn to Christ beginning with the conversion of our consciences. It is the work of Christians everywhere to ask God in prayer for this grace for the world. We who look for the prophesized Warning, hold the hope that it will contain the seeds of a great renewal based in true contrition and conversion of conscience.  
In this season of unprecedented disruption, the church seeks refuge in the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Our Holy Father on his recent pilgrimage to Fatima on May 13th consecrated all the world’s priests to the Immaculate Heart. This is a source of great consolation and joy for us who believe Our Lady asks for constant prayer for all priests, especially those who endure temptation or who by their faithful devotion draw the malice of evil. The Year for Priests is now ending, but we encourage everyone to continue to pray for their priests, pastors and bishops and priests throughout the world.
We encourage you to follow Our Holy Father’s example and consecrate and reconsecrate yourselves, your vocations, marriages, children and grandchildren to the Sacred and Immaculate Hearts. Have your homes and businesses blest by a priest. The daily rosary and scapular are essential – those who cannot easily obtain a scapular should email us with your mailing address at with the word “SCAPULAR” in the subject line and we will send you one gratis.
From the times of the Hebrew Testament, Saint Michael the Archangel is the guardian of the people of God. Our Lady exhorts us at Garabandal to increase our devotion to him. We commend this devotion to you, especially those who feel the assault of the devil in their lives.
We have good news to share concerning the spread of the Message as we continue to see greatly increased traffic on our website from Asia; China, Korea, Japan and India as well as renewed interest from Western Europe; Italy, Spain, Portugal and France. Traffic from the English and Spanish speaking world remain high and we thank the over 1,600 websites in the Garabandal web community around the world for their efforts and support. With your generous support and prayers we continue to send gratis materials around the world.
The Message of Garabandal has passed the test of time. We look with anticipation to the fiftieth anniversary of the commencement of the apparitions next year and the many great and happy anniversaries that will follow shortly on.

Web Notes:
-If you have received a DVD from the New York Center please be advised it may be duplicated. We encourage all promoters to make multiple copies as needed to promote effectively in their community. However, we do not authorize any commercial reproduction what so ever and ask you not to alter the content of the DVD in any way.
-If you are a new subscriber to our email list we can offer you one of the following DVDs gratis; the Message of Garabandal (English/Spanish) or Garabandal: After the Visions. Please send an email to with either “DVD” or “ATV” in the subject line. Please include your full mailing address including postal code and country. This offer is good as long as supplies last.
-One of the surprises of the Year for Priests was the resurgence of an article fromGARABANDAL Magazine: The Catholic Priest, A Man Set Apart by Father Franklyn McAfee. Please feel free to share this wonderful article with everyone but especially with priests and seminarians. We have included the link here.
-We encourage all promoters to download, print, copy and bind any articles, books, or leaflets found on our website – for non commercial distribution. Non English speaking promoters may have any article or leaflet faithfully translated into their local language for the purpose of advancing Our Lady’s Message.
-If you are a foreign language promoter and can distribute the Message of Garabandal DVD in your native country or have the documentary shown publicly in homes, auditoriums or churches or on local television or locally hosted website – send us an email with “MESSAGE” in the subject line with your language, mailing address, postal code and country and some information on your apostolate and we will provide you with a gratis master copy of the DVD documentary in any of the languages available on our website (no English or Spanish). No businesses please.

- As you may know, during this past Lenten season Joey Lomangino suffered a minor heart attack. His condition is now stable and he is experiencing a strong recovery. This year, by God’s grace, Joey will turn 80 years old, an event which he is looking forward to. Your prayers for his full recovery are much appreciated.
Please remember every day; The Morning Offering, Mass and Communion, the Rosary and Scapular, and Devotion to Saint Michael. From the overflow of your prayer life comes the zeal to save souls.
The Workers of Our Lady of Mount Carmel – Lindenhurst, NY USA

P.O. Box 606, Lindenhurst, NY


St. Pio of Pietrelcina


On this "first Saturday" of March, Conchita received a letter addressed to the four visionaries in the village. It came from Blessed Padre Pio, as the Vision would confirm to Conchita, during an ecstasy she had on the same day, telling them, among other things: "Dear children, this morning at nine, the Blessed Virgin asked me to tell you: 'O blessed little girls of San Sebastian de Garabandal! I promise that I will be with you until the end of times, and that you will be with Me until the end of the world. Then you will be united with Me in the glory of Paradise' ".

Having transmitted this very remarkable prophetic message from the Blessed Virgin, Padre Pio continued in these terms:
"I am sending you a copy of the rosary of Fatima that the Blessed Virgin asked me to send to you. This rosary was dictated by the Blessed Virgin and must be made known for the salvation of sinners and for the preservation of humanity from the worst chastisements God is threatening to send us.
"I am giving you only one advice: Pray and make others pray, for the world is on the edge of ruin.
"People do not believe you: they do not believe in your conversations with the Blessed Virgin . . .
"People will believe when it will be very, very late."

As soon as she received this letter, Conchita sent Padre Pio a personal letter, with "a secret message from the Blessed Virgin of Mount Carmel and addressed to him."
We do not know exactly when the famous Capuchin of San Giovanni Rotondo learned about what was going on at Garabandal. Thanks to the book by F. Sanchez-VenturaLa Vierge est-elle apparue a Garabandal? (Did the Blessed Virgin appear at Garabandal?, N.E.L. Paris, 1965), we nevertheless know the gentle "reproach" he addressed, at the beginning of the year 1962, to a group of Spanish pilgrims on the authenticity of the apparitions: "How many apparitions do you need, when they have been taking place for already eight months?"
We shall see later in this Dossier, more, much more about the extraordinary involvement of Blessed Padre Pio in Garabandal.
[Excerpted from 'Garabandal' Book, page 125]

I love mysteries, especially supernatural ones! Padre Pio, who is now a Saint, was a man of mystery! I've read many books about him, watched many movies, [I just bought a new DVD titled 'Padre Pio, Miracle Man.' It's excellent!] but we'll never know the whole story about his life until we get to Heaven. Even though the books and movies didn't tell you, there was a great connection between him and Garabandal. There is a lot more to tell, as the author said, and I know a lot too, but I'll write about it when the proper time comes in our on-going story. By the way, if you can get that book "Did the Blessed Virgin appear at Garabandal?", it's a good one to introduce you to the facts.
Deacon John

Wednesday, June 16, 2010



Having known for some weeks already that Conchita would see the Blessed Virgin again, many witnesses came on this January 27 to attend the resumption of her ecstasies.


On this very day, Msgr. Eugenio Beitia Aldazabal was named the new Bishop of Santander. He was the only titular Bishop during the period of the public "events" of Garabandal, and was to fulfill that office until July 2, 1965. Msgr. Beitia died on December 25, 1985.

The ecstasies kept on.
The Blessed Virgin appeared again to Jacinta on February 18.
[Excerpted from 'Garabandal' Book, page 123]

As I type this message to you, I'm looking at a wonderful picture of Conchita (a full page picture) showing her in the winter of 1962. It was taken a few months before she began writing her little "Diary", which we will hear more about later on. She's wearing a wool coat and matching scarf, with a bunch of religious medals on chains hanging around her neck. These, of course, were offered to Our Lady to be kissed by her and returned to their owners. She never made a mistake in returning each medal to it's rightful owner. Amazing! And what a lovely young girl she was, with a serious face!Deacon John

Monday, June 14, 2010



Left to right: Loli, Conchita, Mari-Cruz and Jacinta

Mari-Cruz and Jacinta, in turn, had their regular apparitions again.
However, starting on January 19, Jacinta was to be deprived of visions for a month for having disobeyed her father. Judging that his daughter needed her sleep, he had not awakened her at the appointed time for her rendezvous with the Blessed Virgin. Jacinta blamed him sharply for this; in spite of her father's disapproval, she had gone to the calleja in the middle of this wintry night to wait for Our Lady who . . . did not come. Jacinta would be punished again in the same way (September - October, also for a period of one month), for a similar behavior.
[Excerpted from 'Garabandal' Book, page 122]
Very interesting! We're not supposed to judge anyone but God really means it when he wrote on the Tablets, "Honor Thy Father and Mother!"

This fourth Commandment is so disregarded these days with rebellious children doing their own thing, dis-obeying their parents, teachers, police; any authority figure that they don't agree with. Some children are even suing their parents for divorce!!! It's a sick society out there and it seems to have all started in the sixties when the Supreme Court stopped prayer in schools; millions of children no longer were in contact with heaven and I believe the graces stopped flowing, allowing more evil to enter the world. It wasn't long after that, that abortion was legalized and the killing of the unborn began in full scale.

Today, 37 years later, over 50 million babies have been murdered in their mother's wombs. So, if you break one Commandment, soon you break another, "Thou shalt not kill!" Of course the rebellious children don't know about the Commandments because that same Supreme Court won't allow them to be posted in schools. It's a vicious cycle, which won't end until Almighty God intervenes and corrects the conscience of the world. Let's pray 
that the Warning comes soon!
Deacon John

Friday, June 11, 2010



There were two ecstasies, half expected, half unforeseen by Conchita, on the Feast of the Immaculate Conception. This was the proper onomastic feast of the visionary, wished to her by the smiling Mary during the first of these two apparitions.

During the second apparition, at 9:30 p.m., Conchita, in ecstasy, visited the sick of the village, offering her crucifix to be kissed. The Blessed Virgin often encouraged the visionaries to be interested in the sick and led them while in ecstasy to the homes of the ill. They spontaneously experienced a great compassion for those who suffered and spent some time with the handicapped and the elderly. Several healings were obtained through the intermediary objects kissed by Our Lady.

Conchita later visited hospitals in Burgos. She even obtained her nursing diploma with success. She practiced the nursing profession first in Bilbao, then in New York where she has lived since 1972.

During her second ecstasy of the 8th of December 1961, Conchita spoke of the "good Pope John (XXIII) who was then very concerned about the problems of the world." "We must be very humble and pray a great deal," added the girl. That was, so at least it seems, the first explicit mention of "Peter's Successor" by the Blessed Virgin of Mount Carmel at San Sebastian de Garabandal. The Pope, the Popes . . .: they were to be on the "agenda," and in more than one way, during the long course of the events!
From 1961 to 1965, on each December 8, Conchita was granted either an apparition or a locution from Our Lady of Mount Carmel.
[Excerpted from 'Garabandal' Book, pages 117-118]

I remember when Conchita lived near us in Queens, NY. She worked for a Spanish doctor in upper Manhattan caring for the poor Spanish-speaking residents. Later on, when she married and had children, she stopped nursing and I believe was a full-time housewife. Our same age children went to the same Catholic High School and we had a small prayer group formed and met in the school chapel. I did the exposition of the Blessed Sacrament with benediction. Although we prayed together, we never talked about the apparitions with Conchita, respecting her privacy. After the kids were no longer going to that school, Conchita and her family moved out to Long Island. I pray for her each day.

Visiting the sick is a great ministry and very rewarding spiritually! The sick and elderly love having visitors, especially in Nursing Homes, where many have been abandoned by their families and have no one to sit and talk and pray for them. When I visited the sick and/or elderly, I always brought them religious gifts like rosaries and scapulars. They seemed to love receiving them, no matter what religion they professed! Many times they would cry out, "Take us home with you!" They missed being in their own homes but many could not take care of themselves anymore. Well, like Jesus, we can have compassion and love for them, and ask the Lord to bless and heal them.
Deacon John 

Wednesday, June 9, 2010


Tom & Susan's Pilgrimage Report:

Susan &  Tom Melillo on are a Pilgrimage visiting different Shrines throughout Europe. Today they arrived in Garabandal. Here is their report. I hope to post some pictures soon.
Deacon John

Buenos Noches;
Sorry the internet was down at the hotel so this is late.
Well we left Limpias a little disappointed with our visit but they we planning a large celebration of the Mass for Corpus Christi and we understood.  On our way to Garabandal it started to rain and rained all the way.  I think some of it was that we were driving in the low lying clouds and that it was just the moisture they hold.  Now I'm a weatherman!!!
Most of you know of the experience we have had here and our love and devotion to Our Lady  Mt. Carmel and this place.  Nothing has changed.
We stopped in the town below for a few supplies and headed up the mountain. As we enter this tiny little hamlet in the Cantabrian Mountains, for the third time in the last 2 years, our excitement grew,  it's like coming home. We knew what we had to do first so we drove directly to the little church in the town.  This church may be small on stature but it is enormously filled with love and grace. Inside this church is a statue of Our Blessed Mother that has changed my life.  Each time I enter this place I grow weak at the knees and my emotions go rampant.  I am so happy to be here I weep with joy.  It is unexplainable.
Many people were in the church today and that is unusual unless a Mass is being said.  Much to our surprise the altar was set for Mass and  they were just waiting for Father Yolando to arrive.  How good is that!  We felt guilty leaving Limpias for not waiting for Mass, but something made us leave and to have it waiting for us here at Garabandal  I'm sure this is where Our Lady wanted us.  We dropped the car back at the hotel and walked to back to church.
Mass was beautiful with music and incense and a packed church. We sat right in the front in front of the Blessed Mother thanking Her the whole time for this wonderful journey we had had and for this celebration today. We also sat there to pray for some very special intentions that had been asked for, especially for Deacon John's Giglio's (Friend's of Garabandal) wife, Marianne, and we added the Deacon and his Family. Deacon John has never been to Garabandal but has dedicated himself to Our Lady Of Mount Carmel and the Garabandal message for years. Well, today, Deacon John ... we will be your eyes, your love and carry your spirit with us in this holy place and our prayers are with you all.
After mass Father filled the Monstrance with the Holy Eucharist and with a cupola covering him, carried by 4 men from the town we all set out, a sea of umbrellas, in the rain and marched thru the streets stopping at four homes of many, all with a beautiful statue's of Jesus set out front on their finest linen and adorned with roses. We prayed and sang and did  Benediction, I think, and finished at the church with the final prayers and songs. It was great to be a part of this humble celebration.. 
We stopped in the sacristy after a to say hello to Father Yolando.  He had looked at us a couple of times during Mass, I think trying to place us and remembered as soon as Susan said Father Yves Francois who celebrated the Mass with him last year on the anniversary day of the first apparition by St. Michael. We had a nice chat and departed for our hotel and the lunch I had hoped we hadn't missed. It was now almost 4 PM.
There is another secret in Garabandal that not many know about and that is Sari's cooking. Her and her husband, we call Papa, own a hotel and restaurant in the village and she is the greatest cook.  Sari is the sister to Mari Loli, one of the  four seers who passed away last year.( Sari was the young child that the people had chosen to go with the seers to confirm the apparitions years ago and she still has a glow about her).  She was distraught the last time we were here (at the loss of her sister) but her spirits were much better now.  We all hugged and kissed, they are all so warm and loving and she waited for us to arrive even though all the other guests were finished.  Our place was set at one of the tables and I prepared my palate for a wonderful treat.  We were not disappointed.  After lunch she asked about dinner and after such a huge meal and that wonderful breakfast we had had who would want dinner.  She talked us into coming back if just for soup so we agreed and headed out in the rain for "Los Pinos" the pines and the first apparition sites on the way.
We had to go, even in the rain  just like the first visit we had made here.  We had borrowed 2 walking sticks from papa and the climb up this steep rocky gorge was actually the easiest it has ever been.  There was not a river of water covering our feet as before so this was cake-walk.  We said the stations of the cross on the way up only stopping at the chapel to St. Michael on the way.  We finished the stations and went into the pines to see Our Lady and again pray for all your intentions.  As we had promised Deacon John Giglio ... our first Prayers were for his wife, Marianne.  Then we left several written intentions in the tree of the apparitions as we had promised and spent a long time there alone, peaceful and at home.
To get off the mountain we always take the long way, or should I say the easy way (another secret).  We have trouble making our way up the gorge let alone trying to come down.  I can't imagine the seers when in ecstasy running down backwards.  We said our rosary on the way down in total peace. As we passed the fountain I stopped for a drink and I asked Susan if she needed some water, she did so I helped her down and told her the one on the right was hot and the other cold. She said "great ... I can wash my hands with the hot water ... Boy is she gulilble.  I got a sweet wack from a walking stick but it was worth the laugh. We were a little wet from our walk, not like our first visit when we came down in the rain and were completely dry.
We headed for the hotel to unload the car for the night, change and I kept a close eye on the time not wanting to miss SOUP.  We had met a fellow from England on our way up to the pines as he was walking down.  He had just discovered Garabandal 2 weeks ago and had to come back.  Something had touched him spiritually and he couldn't explain it. By the way he has a disability on his right side affecting his arm and leg and with great difficulty I watched him make his way, happy as can be. We planned to meet him at the restaurant tonight since he had discovered it and booked a reservation. Over the years we have met some wonderful people here along some evil ones that lurke in the shadows but we ignore them cause they are everywhere.
Realizing it was almost 8 PM and so we wouldn't miss soup and our new friend we headed to the restaurant finding him already engaged in the meal.  We shared stories as we ate, us with our soup and him with his main course that looked and smelled delicious.  Sari came out to make sure we didn't want anything else and I smiled at her with my best puppy dog eyes. Without a word she left and returned in 2 minutes with a platter full of this wonderful meat and potatoes.  She knew!  It could have been dog but Susan and I managed to finish every drop. Three full meals today and still had her home made dessert. We couldn't offend her!!!
After a few brandy's in the bar with our new friend and another Englishman talking about Garabandal (He lives in the town down the mountain and also has just started a web site on Garabandal, he loves this place as much as all of us) and a sloppy e-mail I sent out we headed to bed.  Other than the sounds of the bells around the necks of the horses and cows the town was at peace and quiet.  Just beautiful!
Sleeping in late we headed for the restaurant for coffee but found out that Mass today was at 9:30 AM so we headed right for the church.  Father Yolando's Masses are special.  He is a very holy and dedicated man and today's Mass was no different.  At the end of Mass he made an announcement in English about tomorrows service.  He smiled at us as he said it.
We headed back for our coffee and we had told them last night no breakfast, just coffee, but the table was set and they had toast and cakes waiting for us, so what could we do but eat. 
We had only this one special day this year in Garabandal and we were not disappointed and we really never want to leave, but the sun was shining for our journey as we had our last Apparition site to visit near Madrid, some 6 hours away, before we leave for home on Thursday.  We can't believe we have to come home already, the time flew by.
I don't know how many apparitions sites and shrines we have visited over the last 3 years, maybe 40, I can say they are all very very special, but there is something extraordinary about this tiny little town of San Sebastian de Garabandal that will draw you to come back and back once you experience it.  We'll be back, God willing!
Enough for now I will catch up as soo as I can get the internet again.
God Bless and good night
Susan & Tom