“Tabernacle of the Most High”
NGOME, KWAZULU-NATAL, SOUTH AFRICA (1955-1971)
Sr. Reinolda May was born on October 21, 1901, at Pfahlheim, a small village in the Diocese of Rottenburg in the south-western part of Germany. On March 1, 1922, she entered the convent of the Missionary Benedictines Sisters at Tutzing. Her religious profession took place on February 10, 1925. A few months later, she received the mission cross and left for South Africa on June 21, 1925. There she pronounced her final vows on February 12, 1928. She had not had any secondary education, was already in her mid-thirties, had only worked in the sewing room and her knowledge of English was rather scant. But she worked hard and achieved very good results. She was a very self-disciplined and level-headed person, who did not panic in moments of crisis, but always remained calm and composed. People who knew her well frequently remarked that she had “both feet firmly on the ground.” Sr. Reinolda was at the same time a very humble person who never put the spotlight on her own achievements.
Sr. Reinolda experienced the first unusual appearance on December 8, 1954, at the end of the exposition of the Blessed Sacrament.
“I saw two figures at the table where everything had already been prepared for Mass. At the end of the table was a woman, dressed in white with a long white veil. In her right hand was something covered. It could have been a shield. Opposite her was a monk, dressed in black with raised hands, as at the consecration, holding something like an offering. Then something ascended towards heaven like incense. The figures disappeared as the priest took off his vestments. I could not see any meaning behind it all, but I also could not forget what I had seen. Not long afterwards, during holy communion, it became clear to me, as though somebody had told me: it is a veiled monstrance.”
Sister Reinolda May had her first experience in the presence of the Blessed Virgin on August 22, 1955, during Mass for the Feast of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Shortly after Holy Communion, Sister Reinolda felt herself drawn “into another atmosphere” where everything was viewed in a “spiritual manner.” Blessed Mary stood very near to her “in a wonderful light more beautiful than the sun.” The Virgin was robed all in white with a flowing veil from head to toe. Upon her breast rested a big Host surrounded by “a brilliant corona radiating life.” She was like a “living Monstrance.” Mary stood upon a globe; her hands and feet were not visible. Sister Reinolda remarks,
“I felt like I was entering a cloud, drawn by Mary, away from the earth. I had my eyes closed, but I saw so much light that for several days I was very much dazzled by the beauty and light that I had seen.”
She recalls Blessed Mary telling her:
“Call me ‘Tabernacle of the Most High.’ You, too, are such a tabernacle — believe it. I wish to be called upon this title for the glory of My Son. I wish that more such tabernacles be prepared. I mean human hearts. I wish that the altars be surrounded by praying people more frequently. Don’t be afraid. Make it known.”
When Sister asked to whom she should tell, Our Lady replied to “not be afraid” and “tell your priest.”
In October of 1955, Sister Reinolda had two more similar encounters. Immediately following Mass, the Blessed Virgin appeared in the same place in the same manner and with the same requests – but with these additional words:
“Make these words known to everybody. Do not be afraid. You are God’s tool.”
Then Sister Reinolda May reports that “Christ came out of this big Host and was in union with me.”
Her fourth encounter occurred on March 15, 1956. After Holy Mass the Blessed Virgin stood before Sister Reinolda with a more serious look upon her face. Mary said,
“My child, I know about your anxiety. (She bent down and drew Sister near to her) You asked for a sign?”
Sister Reinolda replied,
“Not for me – for the others, that they may believe. They do not believe me.”
Our Lady answered,
“I wish that a Shrine be erected for Me in the place where seven springs come together. There I will let my Graces flow in abundance. Many people shall turn to God.”
When Sister Reinolda asked where that special place was, Mary silently made a movement with her hand and pointed majestically upwards in a certain direction. Sister felt great happiness and reassurance afterwards. Blessed Mary remarked as she left,
“Do not be afraid. Make it known. It is My work. I shall see you again.”
The fifth encounter occurred on June 5, 1956. On the Feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, during the benediction of the Blessed Sacrament, Sister Reinolda had another vision. Mary came out of the Monstrance and approached as “a living Monstrance.” No message was given, but her method of appearance was profound, simple, and memorable.
The sixth encounter happened on March 15, 1957. The Virgin relayed this message:
“I come to strengthen you. I will make use of your nothingness. Be totally humble. (Mary paused and drew Sister closer) I want to save the world through the Host, My Fruit. I am completely One with the Host as I was One with Jesus under the Cross … Fearful things are in store for you unless you convert. … Yes, if the religious do not convert, and if the world does not convert.”
Again, Sister Reinolda May asked for some kind of sign so that others could believe also. The Blessed Virgin replied,
“You be all Love and readiness. All people who hear and believe these, My Words, are going to receive a sign from Me. Make all these Words known.”
Sister’s seventh encounter occurred on May 24, 1957. The Virgin appeared to her in a consoling and comforting manner. Mary told her quite clearly,
“Do not lose heart!”
In December of that same year of 1957, while visiting Ngome, Sister Reinolda May received a strong urge or “internal confirmation” that she had found the special location where seven springs meet. Now she was certain where Blessed Mary desired her Shrine to be erected.
Sister’s eighth encounter took place on April 17, 1958. Mary commanded her:
“Go to your place. Hurry up, the hour is advanced. I must keep back the streams of Grace with force because you do not make any effort to help Me. I am asking for help from you, My chosen ones.”
A bewildered Sister Reinolda responded immediately,
“What are we supposed to do?”
Our Lady replied,
“Be hosts. Prepare hosts for Me. Hosts who put themselves completely at My disposal. Only a flaming sea of hosts can drive back the hate of the godless world and retrain the angry Hand of the Father. Do not get tired. I find consolation in revealing Myself to you. I shall never abandon you.”
Sister Reinolda May inquired, “Where is the place of the springs?” Mary replied,
“On your property, on the mountain.”
With a movement of Her hand in the very same direction again, Blessed Mary indicated where that location would be.
“Do not be afraid. Make haste to make it known.”
On the Benedictine’s farm, the classroom of the school was used as the Chapel. A picture of “Mary, Tabernacle of the Most High” was painted, and it hung in the classroom until a chapel had been erected. On Pentecost Sunday, 1966, a ceremony was held to open and bless the Chapel. After the eighth encounter, twelve years passed before Our Lady brought another message.
The ninth encounter happened on March 23, 1970. Sister Reinolda describes the “horrible appearance of the devil” for two nights in a row. On the second night, she was awakened from her sleep. A bright light was all around her. Sister saw “Mary. Tabernacle of the Most High” standing beside her now. Blessed Mary took Sister Reinolda May into Her arms and consoled her. The Virgin said to her,
“I know about your anxiety. I stand by you. I shall not abandon you.” Before she disappeared, she said, “Look to the other side.”
There, standing on the other side of the room, was St. Michael in armor with a lance in his hands. On his right stood a cherubim robed in white with his arms folded. After about two minutes, they disappeared and so did the brilliant light. This was a great consolation for Sister Reinolda May.
The tenth and final visit occurred on May 2, 1971, while visiting Ngome. Before departing, Sister Reinolda made a last visit to the Chapel with a small group of women. A catechumen had complained that she was in trouble because she wanted to believe. One of her neighbors had called her names; they were quarreling. Sister prayed aloud with the women and asked Blessed Mary to help this woman and convert the man who had been a troublemaker.
“Suddenly I noticed that the picture (of Mary) was very much alive. She stepped forward and Her Face was immensely beautiful. In my excitement I shouted, ‘Look at Mary.’ I am convinced that the women saw Mary, too! I personally was so moved that I walked away silently. The same troublesome man asked the priest for pardon, and since then there has been peace.”
A chapel was built, and as it happened the site was also a place held sacred by the local Zulu population. It was consecrated at Pentecost 1966. The picture of “Our Lady the Tabernacle of the Most High” was placed in the chapel. Pilgrimage to the site began in March 1966, but soon afterward they were stopped by Bishop Bilgeri. From the first vision on, Sr. Reinolda shared her experiences with the local priests, who showed reluctance and referred her to the bishop, to whom she wrote a number of times in the next decade. He did not want the visions to be publicized, and while he consented to the painting and the small chapel, he refused to have a bigger church built; he maintained this attitude until his death, in 1973. Popular veneration at the shrine continued unabated; people traveled from far and wide to pray at the chapel and collect water from the springs. A 1976 commission headed by two Benedictine priests decided that the use of Ngome as a site of pilgrimage would bring great benefits, and that pilgrimage and veneration (though not the use of the spring water) should be allowed. Then-Bishop Bisaye, however, would not allow organized pilgrimages.
When Sr. Reinolda died in 1981, interest again increased. In 1984 a new church was built at the site; it was dedicated to the Virgin Mary without any specific or additional titles. In 1988, the Ngome Shrine committee was formed from priests of the diocese. By that time, Bishop Bisaye was wavering, saying he could and would not suppress the veneration. In 1989, the committee published a booklet, and postcards featuring the shrine were being printed.
Finally, in 1992, Bishop Bisaye blessed an open-air altar, part of a bigger chapel that replaced the little shrine, and allowed for the Marian Shrine to be designated a place of prayer, so that organized pilgrimage was now actively promoted. There are reports of miraculous and spontaneous healing at the shrine, and comparisons with Lourdes are drawn. The water from the spring is still collected, and visitors dip their feet in the water during prayer. The shrine is one of the most popular Christian pilgrimage sites in Africa. Sister Reinolda May’s apparitions were the first in a series of Marian visions in Africa.
“Our Lady, Mediatrix of All Grace”
LIPA, PHILIPPINES (1948, 1990)
Teresita Castillo was 21 years old when she fled her prominent home and followed her secret desire to become a Carmelite novice on July 4, 1948. Within one month of her arrival into the convent, on July 31, 1948, Satan visited her in her room and attempted to convince her to leave the convent. Three more times, accompanied by a foul odor, he appeared to her and tried to force her out with threats and fears. But, in August, when Our Lady first appeared to her, there was an overpowering but pleasant fragrance of flowers. Mary appeared to her three times in August, then for 15 consecutive days in September with one final visit in November. This rapid succession of supernatural visits caused Teresita to ask, “Is this what life is like in this convent?”
July 31, 1948 – Satan made three loud knocks on her cell door followed by a foul odor and then a harsh voice which frightened her. When she showed her rosary to him, he departed, leaving a soot-covered hoof print on the floor.
August 18, 1948 – Mary tells Teresita to wash the feet of the prioress, Mother Cecilia, and to drink some of the water herself. When told this, the prioress was quite doubtful.
August 19, 1948 – Blessed Mary repeats her request to Teresita but adds a locution in Mother Cecilia’s ear, telling her that Teresita would be carrying a sign of confirmation for such a request. The prioress observed unexpected circles of blood around Teresita’s eyes – so she believed and let her wash her feet! Mary voiced her approval later that night, disguised as a nun.
August 20, 1948 – Teresita saw showers of rose petals for the first of many times. They occurred both outside in the garden and inside the convent. Many clergy, pilgrims, and religious witnessed these rose petal showers. The rose petals contained miraculous images of Jesus, Mary, and other holy scenes. They were collected, saved, and cherished by many – even to this present day.
August 22, 1948 – Teresita awoke and felt invisible hands trying to strip her of her clothes. The devil was trying to attack her. She struggled, broke free, and fled to the stairway. The prioress heard the commotion and joined into the physical struggle herself – and helped free Teresita. But Teresita was now blind. Mother Cecilia had a prophetic locution that she would regain her eyesight – and on September 7, she did see again.
September 12, 1948 – Teresita was praying in the garden when a vine began to shake and a bluebird appeared. Our Lady appeared and requested that she kiss the earth and return to this same spot for 15 consecutive days.
September 14, 1948 – Mary requested that the location of the apparitions be blessed in the presence of the community – and that was accomplished.
September 15, 1948 – Our Lady asked that her image be created and placed in a shrine for prayer at the site of these apparitions. A statue of Mary was enshrined.
September 16, 1948 – Teresita sees Mary arrive, accompanied by little angels.
September 21, 1948 – Mary requests 13 devotions be said on Saturdays.
September 22, 1948 — Mary tells Teresita that she is not obligated to believe, listen, or even pray on Saturdays unless she wants to — of her own free will.
September 25, 1948 – Mary asks for everyone to become consecrated to her on October 7 and “become My slaves.”
September 26, 1948 – “I am Mary, Mediatrix of All Grace. Mass is to be held every 12th day of the month.”
November 5, 1948 – Teresita suffers the passion of Jesus, beginning exactly at noon, lying on the floor unconscious. This is witnessed by the prioress, Bishop Obviar, and other nuns. As one nun reported, “The seven words would be re-enacted, and we really did see it!”
November 12, 1948 – Mary says, “People do not believe my words … Pray for priests … What I ask here is exactly what I asked for at Fatima …Pray. The people do not heed my words. There will be persecutions, unrest, and bloodshed in your country. The enemy of the church will try to destroy the faith which Jesus established and died for. …Be not afraid, for the love of my Son will soften the hardness of hearts, and My Motherly love will be their strength to curse the enemies of God …”
Saint Therese of Liseux accompanied Our Lady during some of the apparitions. She had been known for saying, “From the heavens I will let fall a shower of roses.” Teresita had also seen Saint Cecilia. On an occasion, Teresita was too ill to attend Mass, so an angel brought her communion, placing a host on her tongue.
On January 23, 1949, the cornerstone was laid for the new church, Our Lady Mediatrix of All Grace — with up to 50,000 present. But Bishop Alfredo Verzosa ordered the Carmelite nuns to withdraw the statue of Mary from public veneration because of all the commotion it had caused. He personally went to the convent on November 19, 1948, determined to do this, himself. When he opened the door and entered the convent, a shower of rose petals fell on him. He fell to his knees and could not utter a word. From that moment on, Bishop Verzosa supported the apparitions with official approval.
Many cures have been reported using the rose petals. A baby, Soccorro Dichoso, was born with a hole in her skull. The parents applied rose petals from one of the “showers” to the baby’s skull on January 28, 1949. X-rays confirmed that the hole closed up and the brain receded, curing the child.
On December 24, 1950, a girl was receiving the Last Rites, dying from a cerebral hemorrhage, when the priest placed one of those “heavenly rose petals” on her forehead. Upon the ringing of the Angelus bell, the girl suddenly awakened as if nothing was wrong – and she was completely healed.
Another child, Menania Sungo, had been born with a severely deformed right foot. It was curled so much that she could not wear a shoe; her leg had atrophied, shortened, and wasted away. But, at nine years old, her uncle brought a bottle of water that had been placed by Mary’s statue overnight. The mother rubbed this water on her foot every evening for a week, and then the child awoke one morning to a perfectly healed foot and leg! Neighbors reported a strong fragrance of flowers around the child’s home. The Sungo family was shocked when a shower of rose petals fell inside their own home.
And “showers” of rose petals have often fallen inside Teresita’s home as well. Several witnesses, including a priest, were present when full roses materialized out of thin air and landed on the stairs, altar, and bedroom of Teresita’s home.
The official church investigation in April, 1951, was rather suspicious in that key witnesses were not interviewed, diaries and evidence were destroyed, and the six bishops who signed the negative report admitted later that they had been coerced to do so under threat of excommunication. Despite efforts by psychiatric professionals to find mental illness, delusion, or other emotional disturbances with Teresita, she was officially deemed sane. Neither Bishop Obviar nor Bishop Verzosa was questioned. Stringent sanctions were placed on the Convent of Lipa. The nuns were cut off from the world; the statue of Mary was removed from sight. But, from February through May, 1990, a white luminous figure of a female in prayer appeared in a coconut tree every evening for 90 days. Sister Alphonse pleaded from her deathbed for the statue of Mary to be exposed again in the Chapel of Carmel.
The next day – after 40 years – Archbishop Gaviola finally ordered the statue to be displayed again. Showers of rose petals began again. As Teresita and two others were praying in front of Mary’s statue in the chapel, a shower of pure white rose petals fell inside the chapel.
A few days later, six children playing in the convent garden saw the statue of Mary come to life. They reported,
“I saw her eyes cry, and her feet come close together. I held her hand, and it was soft. I saw her dress blow in the breeze. I held her dress, and it was soft. When I kissed her feet, I felt them move – the toes wiggled. The eyes raised upward and the rosary moved.”
Other reports include the “spinning of the sun” and strong smell of roses again. And Teresita began receiving messages from Mary again. Water gained healing powers if the rose petals had been dipped into it.
Due to the scandalous suppression of facts, coerced statements from six bishops, and the omission of key witnesses and evidence, the church has finally set up a new committee to investigate all the happenings at Lipa. (Finally approved 9-12-2015 by the Archbishop)
“The Mystical Rose”
MONTICHIARI / FONTANELLE, ITALY (1947-1966)
Not far from the picturesque Lake Garda, surrounded by mountains, is the little town of Montichiari with 14,000 inhabitants. In the spring of 1947, while praying in the hospital chapel, nurse Pierina Gilli encountered Our Holy Mother. Mary appeared in a wonderful vision and magnificent light, dressed in mauve, but very sad with tears in her eyes. Her heart was pierced by three swords – one was for the unworthy celebration of Mass and Communion received unworthily; the second was for unfaithful priests and other religious ones giving up; the third was for “betrayal of the Faith.” Our Lady asked for Prayer, Penance, and Sacrifice. Those were her only words.
Second Apparition (July 13, 1947) – Our Lady appeared to Pierina in a white dress adorned with three roses of white, red, and yellow colors (in place of 3 swords). The white rose symbolized the spirit of prayer. The red rose represented the spirit of sacrifice, and the yellow rose was for the spirit of penance and conversion. But Pierina had not yet recognized who this lady in white truly was, so she asked her. Mary replied,
“I am the Mother of Jesus and the Mother of all of you. Our Lord sends me to bring a new Marian Devotion to all religious orders and institutes, male and female, and to the priests of this world. I promise to protect these religious orders and institutes who will venerate me in this special way, increase their vocations, and achieve a greater striving for saintliness among the servants of God. I wish that the 13th day of each month be celebrated as a Marian Day. Special prayers are to be said during the preceding twelve days. On this day I shall pour out vocational holiness and abundant graces on those religious orders and spiritual institutes who have honored me especially. I wish that the 13th of July be celebrated every year in honor of the Rosa Mystica.”
Pierina asked if a miracle would follow. Mary said that the miracle would be the return of wayward, offending priests to the original spirit of their saintly founders. Pierina translated the term Mystical Rose to mean, “Mary is the master teacher of the innermost mystical life and the Mother of the mystical body of Christ – the Mother of the Church.” This interpretation was magnificently confirmed by Pope Paul VI on November 21, 1964.
Third Apparition (October 22, 1947) – Our Lady again appeared to Pierina in the hospital chapel in the presence of many staff members, doctors, and religious from the town. A statue of Mary came to life, and blood started dripping from the side of Christ. Pierina took a purificator and wiped the drops of blood. Blessed Mary said,
“I have placed myself as the Mediatrix between my Divine Son and mankind, especially for the soul consecrated to God. Tired of the continuous offenses, He already wants to dispense His justice. … Live out of Love! For the last time I come to ask for the devotion already registered at other times. My Divine Son wanted to leave traces of his blood to witness how great is his love for the people from whom he is countered with serious offenses. Get the purificator and show it to those present. Here are the drops of the blood of the Lord!”
Fourth Apparition (November 16, 1947) – Mary appeared in the Basilica of Montichiari in the presence of some people, including several priests. The Virgin said,
“Our Lord can no longer watch the many grievous sins against purity. He wants to send a flood of punishments. I have interceded that He may be merciful once more! Therefore, I ask for prayer and penance to atone for these sins.”
Fifth Apparition (November 22, 1947) – When Mary appeared to Pierina again in the Basilica, Mary asked her to make the Sign of the Cross four times with her tongue on the tiles in the center of the church. Our Lady descended onto that spot and said,
“I descend on this place — for many great conversions will happen here. The Christians of your Italian nation belong to those who most offend my Divine Son Jesus through their sins of unchastity. Our Lord demands PRAYER, generous SACRIFICES, and PENANCE. … Penance means to accept, every day, all the little crosses and the duties, too, in the spirit of penance. On the 8th of December, at noon, I shall appear again here in the Basilica. IT WILL BE THE HOUR OF GRACE. This will produce great and numerous conversions. Hardened and cold hearts resembling this marble will be touched by divine Grace, and they will become faithful to Our Lord in loyal love.”
Sixth Apparition (December 7th, 1947) – The Blessed Virgin appeared again in the Basilica to Pierina along with three people. Mary wore a white cloak – held on the right by a young boy and held on the left by a small girl. Mary then stated,
“I shall show my Heart tomorrow of which the people know so little. In Fatima I asked that the devotion to my Heart be spread. (sweetly:) I wanted to bring my Heart into Christian families in Bonate. (Ghiaie di Bonate!) (after a pause) Here, in Montichiari, I wish to be venerated as The Rosa Mystica”
Pierina was given a secret that Mary would allow her to reveal to the public at a later date. Pierina asked who the boy and girl were that appeared on either side of Mary. Our Lady replied that they were Francisco and Jacinta (from Fatima). With that revelation, Mary spread her arms outward, lifted her eyes to Heaven, and vanished, saying, “Praised be the Lord!”
Seventh Apparition (December 8th, 1947) – Countless priests were present for this anticipated event – so many that Pierina had trouble getting into the church! Pierina knelt in the center of the church, praying the Rosary, when Our Lady appeared on a large white staircase decorated with a white, red, and yellow rose. She said, with a smile,
“I am the Immaculate Conception … (took a few more steps) … I am Mary, full of grace, Mother of My Divine Son Jesus Christ… (a few more steps) … Through my coming to Montichiari I wish to be known as the Rosa Mystica. It is my wish that every year, on the 8th of December, at noon, the Hour of Grace for the World be celebrated. Many divine and bodily graces will be received through this devotion. Jesus will send His overflowing mercy if good people will pray continuously for their sinful brother. One should very soon notify the Holy Father of the Church, Pope Pius XII, that it is my wish that the HOUR OF GRACE FOR THE WORLD be made known and spread throughout the world. If anyone is unable to visit his church, yet will pray at noon at home, he will also receive graces through me. Whoever prays on these tiles and weeps tears of penance will find a secure, heavenly ladder and receive protection and grace through my motherly heart. … The Lord is still protecting the good and is holding back a great punishment because of my intercession. Soon, one will recognize the greatness of this Hour of Grace.
Pierina says: “On Her chest stood Her Heart, in which the stakes were three roses, white, red and yellow. A light so bright, radiant and penetrating was emerging from Her Heart. I was dazzled and almost blinded, to the point that Mary disappeared from my sight. The light was so strong when it came out of Her Heart and so pervasive into my interior, which filled me with immense joy, that I could not help but cry with excitement: Oh! The Immaculate Heart of Mary.”
That was the description of the apparition that Pierina wrote in her diary. She adds the words of the Virgin Mary:
“Behold the Heart that so loves men, while most of them return it with insults. When good and evil are united in prayer, one will obtain mercy, and peace from this Heart. For now, the good by me have obtained the Lord’s mercy that stopped a great plague “
Pierina saw that Our Lady was about to depart and said, “Dear Lady, I thank you! Bless my homeland, Italy, and the whole world, but especially the Holy Father, the priest, the religious, and the sinners.” Mary smiled and replied,
“I have already prepared a flood of graces for all the children who listen to my words and keep them in their hearts. I will return at a suitable time when the Secret entrusted to you will be made public through the Ecclesiastical authority. Good-bye.”
Pierina withdrew from the world into a convent where she served in the kitchen. She waited in silence for the hour which, as promised, cameafter 19 years on April 17, 1966, the Sunday after Easter in Fontanelle, a small settlement just outside of Montichiari. The Blessed Virgin said to Pierina,
“My Divine Son is total Love, and he is sending me to give miraculous powers to this spring. As a sign of penance and purification, kiss the top step … Descend a few steps and kiss the stone again. (Mary follows behind her) Now, for a third time, kiss the bottom step and have a crucifix placed there (with Her left hand, She indicated the spot) The sick and all my children must kiss the crucifix and ask my Divine Son for forgiveness before they take the water or drink from it. (She approaches the spring.) Take mud into your hands. Wash yourself with water! This is to teach the sinners that sin makes the soul dirty, yet the soul will be cleansed again through the water of grace.”
Our Lady bowed down and touched the water of the spring in two places. She repeated her wish for the sick to come to this miraculous spring along with many of her children.
Second Apparition (May 13, 1966) – In the presence of about 20 people Blessed Mary again appeared at the spring. She wanted her appearance to be made known. She suggested that “the world is walking the road to perdition” but She has obtained mercy. She insisted again on Prayer, Sacrifice, and Penance “to save mankind.” She pointed to the right side of the spring and insisted that a comfortable basin be constructed to immerse the sick, while on the left side, the water there would be for drinking. It would be named the Spring of Grace. Spreading her arms and opening her wide cloak, she smiled and said,
“I have come to bring love, unity, and peace to the souls of my children. I ask you, do not throw any mud on the love for your fellow man. … Do acts of charity for the sick who will come here.”
Third Apparition (June 9, 1966) – About a hundred people were present at the spring on this feast day of Corpus Christi. Pierina asked everyone present to recite the Rosary. Suddenly, in the middle of the Rosary, Pierina said, “Look up to the sky!” Our Lady was appearing about 5 or 6 meters above the spring over a wheat field. Those present noticed that, in the direction of the seer’s eyes, Our Lady seemed to touch the ears of the wheat with her feet. Mary said,
“I should like very much that this wheat be transformed into Eucharistic bread, into countless penitential communions. (lifting eyes toward Heaven) It is my wish that the Hosts made of this wheat be taken to Rome – and to Fatima for the 13th of October (the anniversary of the Miracle of the Sun in Fatima). I wish that a chapel be built here with a statue facing the spring. The statue is to be carried here in a procession on October 13th. Prior to this, I want the people of Montichiari to consecrate themselves to my heart.”
Fourth Apparition (August 6, 1966) – At the spring on this day about 200 people had gathered. Our Lady appeared again during the reciting of the Rosary. Mary said,
“My Divine Son, Jesus, has sent me again, in order to request the World League of Penitential Communion – and this to be done on the 13th of October throughout the world. It will first be held in 1966, and then repeated every year. The priests and faithful who will spread this devotion will be given the wealth of my graces. One should take the wheat to my beloved Son, Pope Paul VI, with the instruction that it has been blessed by Our Presence.”
Pierina was told to make small bread rolls of the remaining wheat which would be distributed in Fontanelle in memory of Her visits and as “a sign of gratitude to my sons who till the soil.”
“After my ascension into Heaven, I have always acted as Mediatrix between my Son Jesus and the whole of mankind. How many graces I have been able to obtain in all these centuries! How many graces were shown. How much punishment was prevented. How many dialogues did I hold with souls. How often have I visited Earth to bring my messages to the people – but people continue to offend Our Lord. I have chosen this place of Montichiari because there is still the humility of poor Bethlehem among my sons who till the soil. Because so many prayers are said continuously, this place will be transformed into a source of rich blessings.”
In an appearance on May 15, 1969, Our Lady confirms the value of obedience to Pierina saying:
“I joined the obedience you’ve done to your Bishop Luigi Morstabilini, to imitate the example you were given. First, the Divine Son, Jesus Christ, humbled himself and became obedient unto death on a cross. Daughter, obedience is humility, so often sacrifice, but God our Lord knows then to give the soul peace and docility, which is the true love of Him!”
The meaning of the three roses: White Rose: a spirit of prayer for reparation — for the offenses by the Lord’s consecrated people who do not live consistently their vocation. Red Rose: a spirit of sacrifice for the offenses committed by the men who live in mortal sin. Pink Yellow-gold: a spirit of sacrifice for the offenses to the Lord committed by the priests who betray their vocation and, in particular, to get their sanctification. These three roses offered for love, with the spirit of reparation required by Rosa Mistica, drop the three swords from the Heart of Our Lady.
May 19, 1970 apparition: The Virgin shows two round gold medals in the palms of Her hands. On the right palm Pierina sees the engraved image of Mary, standing at the top of a ladder with her hands folded and head bowed forward, surrounded by roses. Many roses were scattered at Her feet. Encircling this image was written: “Rosa” and “Mystica.” On the back of one of the medals Pierina sees a beautiful domed church with three large doors. On it was the inscription: Mary Mother of the Church. Pierina wrote in her diary that the Blessed Mother “expresses the wish that I make a medal like this with the two inscriptions,” and says,
“The Lord sent me to this place chosen by Him to bring the gift of his love, the source of the gift of thanks and the medal of My Motherly Love. I’m here today to let people know that this medal, the gift of universal love will be carried by the children in their hearts wherever they go. I promise to these my children My protection, My motherly grace . The medal of my motherly love will let my children know I am always carried with them. I am the Mother of the Lord, the Mother of humanity. You will be the triumph of universal love! The blessing of the Lord, with my love, will always accompany all children who take refuge in me.”
Every 13th of the month is devoted to special acts of devotion to Mary, with a preparation of prayer in the 12 previous days.
Second Sunday of Easter – Anniversary of Rosa Mistica Fontanelle in Montichiari.
On July 13 of each year is celebrated in honor of Mary ” Mystical Rose . “
On October 13 of each year (second Sunday of the month) is sanctified by the Holy Communion of Reparation preceded by confession. The message speaks of “World Union of Holy Communion of Reparation.” Under this designation may be set up prayer groups or congregations.
Every year on December 8, the feast of the Immaculate Conception, at noon you enjoy the Hour of Grace, waiting for the special graces of conversion and sanctification promised for that hour.
“The Virgin of Revelation”
TRE FONTANE, ROME, ITALY (1947)
Bruno Cornacchiola, born in 1913, came from a poor background, joined the military, got married, and then decided to fight on the Nationalist side in the Spanish Civil War to earn some money. He deserted his wife in order to fight on the side of the anti-Catholic forces. He came under the influence of a German Protestant, who managed to convince him that the papacy was the cause of all the world’s ills. Bruno immediately conceived a hatred for the Church and vowed to kill Pope Pius XII – and bought a dagger in Spain for that purpose! He carved the words on it: “Death to the Pope.”
Bruno returned to his wife, but he was far from a model husband. He frequently used blasphemous and obscene speech, committed adultery, beat his wife and had forbidden her from going to a Catholic church or practicing her faith in any manner. He joined the Seventh Day Adventists and plotted to kill the Pope on the Feast of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary, September 8, 1947.
On the Saturday after Easter Sunday, April 12, 1947, Bruno took his three children (Isola-10, Carlo-7, and Gianfranco-4) for a picnic to Tre Fontane (the area outside of Rome where the Romans beheaded St. Paul). On that lovely spring day, Bruno sat in a grove of Eucalyptus trees, preparing a talk to ridicule the Immaculate Conception. Earlier that day, as if to manifest his bitter hatred for the Immaculate Mother, he had written on the base of a statue of the Holy Virgin, “You are neither virgin nor mother!”
One of his children lost his ball and asked for his help. He followed this child but saw his youngest child kneeling at the entrance to a cave. The child’s face was radiantly joyful as he stared into the cave, repeating, “Beautiful lady, beautiful lady.” His hands were folded as if engrossed in deep prayer. Bruno looked into the cave and could see nothing that would account for the boy’s action. He then turned toward his other two children, but by then, they too, had dropped to their knees, hands folded in prayer with their eyes transfixed on someone in the cave. The three children were mesmerized by something supernatural that he could not see. Seized with fright, Bruno tried to grab his children and carry them away, but he could not move them! It was as if they were glued to the ground. Then, in the midst of an intense perfume of flowers, Mary appeared to Bruno as well. An intense light filled his eyes for a moment, and then everything in front of him disappeared – his children and the cave. He felt himself becoming weightless.
After this momentary blindness, Bruno saw in the most illuminated part of the cave a woman of indescribable celestial beauty. She was dressed in a long, brilliantly white dress with a rose-colored sash. Over her black hair was a green mantle which extended to her bare feet. Her head was adorned by a halo of brilliant golden light. Her face had an expression of motherly kindness, although cloaked by sadness at times. She was holding a dark gray Bible close to her heart. At her bare feet lay a black cloth which had a smashed crucifix on it. Her hands were crossed at her breast, but she unfolded them once to point to the broken pieces of the crucifix.
“I am the one who is of the Divine Trinity. I am Daughter of the Father, Mother of the Son, and Spouse and Temple of the Holy Spirit. I am the Virgin of Revelation. (Then she turned on Bruno.) You persecute me. Enough of it now! Enter into the true fold, God’s Kingdom on Earth. The Nine First Fridays of the Sacred Heart have saved you. You must be like the flowers which Isola picked. They make no protest — they are silent and do not rebel.”
Mary then spoke at length about many things with Bruno that afternoon, including her Assumption into Heaven. “My body could not decay and did not decay. My Son came for me with His Angels.” She revealed the sad condition of Bruno’s soul to him. She was admonishing a return to God and a more literal living of the holy Gospel: “Return to the pure source of the Gospel.” At this point, Mary taught him the sure means of salvation for him and all mankind – which is prayer, and in particular, the daily praying of the Holy Rosary.
“Pray much and recite the Rosary for the conversion of sinners, of unbelievers and of all Christians.”
As a reward for those who listen to her message of prayer, Mary said,
“With this sinful soil, I will work powerful miracles for the conversion of unbelievers. I want to give you absolute proof of the divine reality which you are experiencing, so that you will exclude any other motive for this encounter – evil motivation included. This is the sign: Every time you meet a priest in church or in the street, approach him and address him with these words, ‘Father, I must talk to you.’ If he answers, ‘Ave Maria! My son, what do you want?’ Beg him to stop, because he is the chosen one. Tell him what your heart dictates and obey him. In fact, he will direct you to another priest by saying, ‘He is the one for you.’ Afterwards, you will go to the Holy Father, the Supreme Shepherd of all Christians, and give him My message personally. The one that I will point out to you will take you to the Pope. Some people will not believe, but let that not disturb you.”
Having said that to Bruno, she turned and serenely moved in the direction of St. Peter’s Basilica. Still transfixed in an ecstasy, he could not move for a few moments.
Bruno and the children cleaned the grotto as best they could, and he chiseled the date of the apparition with his house key on the spot where the Virgin had stood. Bruno’s conversion took place immediately, and he eventually gifted Pope Pius XII with the dagger he had planned to kill him with. (Mary had directed him, as predicted, through priests to the Pope.) He passed police interrogations and psychiatric examinations.
True to Mary’s promise, the dirt from the Grotto of Tre Fontane has proven to be miraculous. It has worked wonders for the welfare of both bodies and souls. There have been so many bodily cures and conversions that no one disputes that these graces have been received through the intercession of the Virgin of Revelation.
Mary appeared to Bruno three more times. He repented his sinful life and became an outstanding Catholic. Like Paul, he dedicated his life to evangelizing and teaching the truths of the Catholic Faith. From that moment on, the grotto has been a gathering place for thousands of the faithful. Every April 12, the Apparition is commemorated with a solemn celebration.
On April 12, 1980, on the 33rd anniversary of the Virgin’s visit, approximately 3,000 people, including 25 priests, had gathered to hear Bruno recall the first apparition and attend a Mass. Suddenly, during the Holy Sacrifice, they were astounded by a supernatural display in the sky.
“Strange images appeared in the sky above the Grotto. The sun seemed to turn backwards in the heavens and then began to draw near the earth. It could be seen without straining the eyes. It appeared bigger than normal, and showed within its corona brilliant and diverse colors (much in the same way as the sun “danced” in the sky over Fatima). In rapid movements, as an incandescent magma forming diverse figurations, the sun appeared as a cross, an ‘M’, a heart surrounded with stars or dripping with blood, the monogram of Christ (IHS), hands joined in prayer, the Holy Family, etc. Some saw the sun separate into three circles, then come back together again. In spite of the numerous trees which should have impeded vision, the sun stood out clearly and brightened the chapel, faces, and the clothing of the people.”
The phenomenon lasted about 30 minutes. Meanwhile, the Mass that had been in progress was halted so that the people could calm down and return their attention to the service. There were many physical cures. A medical center was set up; after extensive research, it was confirmed that the cures were indeed miraculous and beyond any medical or scientific explanation.
Two years later, on the same anniversary date, April 12, 1982, the phenomenon of the miracle of the sun was repeated. Again, the people could look directly at the sun without hurting their eyes. This time, Our Lady had a message for priests:
“You are to have a deeper faith in the revealed truths of the Faith, greater obedience to the Teaching Authority of the Church, a vigilant prudence in dealing with people, and a pure and dignified lifestyle.”
From the very beginning of his conversion, Bruno was intent in passing on the truths of the Faith which he formerly so poorly understood. Under the inspiration and direction of Our Lady Herself, he founded the catechetical organization called SACRI at Tre Fontane. From the early months of his conversion, he was associated with an existing congregation of Sisters there. In one of the apparitions, Our Lady told him:
“Go to my beloved daughters, the Teachers Filippini, and tell them that their mission is to be one of intense prayer for the conversion of non-believers and sinners.”
An attractive, simple shrine was built and staffed by the Conventual Franciscans. Pope Pius XII blessed the statue of Our Lady of the Revelation in St. Peter’s Square. Pope John Paul II blessed three statues of Our Lady of the Revelation for Italy, Australia, and the United States. Our Lady then commented,
“Wherever a Sanctuary of the Virgin of Revelation is erected, it will be for all an oasis of conversion during the purgation of the Church.”
In 1997, Pope John Paul II approved that the shrine be renamed: “Holy Mary of the Third Millennium at Three Fountains.”
“Our Lady of Prayer”
L’ILE BOUCHARD, FRANCE (1947)
December 8, 1947 was going to be a very special day for three little girls, Jacqueline Aubrey (12), her sister Jeanette (7), and their cousin, Nicole Robin (10). It was the feast of the Immaculate Conception and also the day they would meet the Virgin Mary. At school that day the nuns who taught their classes had encouraged all the children to pray for France due to its troubles with the Soviet Union at that time. The girls had eaten their lunch at home and were returning to school when Jacqueline suggested they stop on the way back to visit the chapel.
Halfway through praying a decade of the Rosary in front of the altar, they looked up and were astonished to see a “beautiful lady” with her hands joined in prayer. A white rosary hung from her right arm. To the left of the lady was an angel, holding a lily while his eyes were fixed in contemplation of the lady. The altar of the Virgin had a stained glass window featuring Our Lady of Lourdes to its left, and a statue of Our Lady of Victories directly above it. The apparition was situated several feet off the ground in the corner between the altar and the window. While the beautiful lady smiled at them, Jacqueline whispered that others should see this wonderful sight as well. She ran outside to notify others. She immediately grabbed two friends, Laura Croizon (8) and her sister, Sergine (13) and then returned to the church.
Laura immediately saw the beautiful lady whereas her older sister could not – so they had to describe what they were seeing to her. They emphasized how beautiful the lady was. She was wearing a brilliantly white dress with gold trim at the neck and wrists. There was a blue sash around her waist and a veil covering her head. They noted that the veil’s white color to be different from the dress, and it was decorated along the edges with motifs known as “Touraine” in this region of France. With hands joined in prayer the beautiful lady radiated a strong golden light. She had blue eyes and long blonde hair – almost down to her knees! They estimated her to be 16 or 17 years old.
The lady stood on a stone block that was decorated with a garland of five pink roses. On the rock, written in gold, were the words, “O Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to thee.”
The angel was kneeling on his right knee, surrounded by an intense white light. He wore a robe of a soft rose color. He, too, had blue eyes and long blonde curly hair. In his left hand he held a lily stalk while his right hand was placed over his heart. His white wings were trimmed in gold while his feathers moved slightly in a breeze that the children could not feel. He seemed to be in profound contemplation of Our Lady. This area of the church was strangely lit with colors that the girls had never seen before. Eventually, the apparition disappeared into what appeared to be a “cloud of silvery dust.”
The children returned to school with excitement and told Sister Marie de L’Enfant Jesus about what they had experienced. She immediately believed them, whereas the parish priest, Fr. Clovis Segelle – despite extensive questioning – did not believe them. After school the children returned to the chapel and were delighted to see the lady beckoning them. But she seemed extremely sad as she slowly uttered,
“Tell the little children to pray for France, for her need is great.”
Jacqueline asked the lady if she might be the Heavenly Mother. The Virgin quickly affirmed that she was indeed their Heavenly Mother. Then the girls asked her about the angel. He turned and announced that he was the angel Gabriel. Mary then turned back to the girls and asked for their hands to kiss, bending low to reach the hands of Jacqueline and Nicole. But the other two girls were much smaller and could not reach high enough. Jacqueline took them up, one after the other, and lifted them up at arms length, as though they were practically weightless. All four testified to the solidity and warmth of Mary’s hand and the touch of her lips. Before disappearing in a cloud of silvery dust, she asked them to return that evening at 5:00 and the next day at 1:00 p.m.
After the girls left the church, they noticed a shining white oval on their fingers, but before they got back to school these traces, which they did manage to show to a local woman, had faded. Jacqueline and Nicole spoke of what had happened, and after class they were separated and asked to write out accounts of their experiences, which were matching. Once the girls got home they found their parents not inclined to believe them, and only Jacqueline was able to return to the church for the rosary and Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament in honor of the feast of the Immaculate Conception. Mary appeared and beckoned to Jacqueline, but as she debated whether to go forward or not, looking back toward her teacher, Sr. Saint-Léon, for permission, assuming that she too could see the apparition. The bell rang for Benediction, and when she looked back, the apparition was gone. Once the Blessed Sacrament had been returned to the tabernacle, Mary reappeared.
On the next day, December 9, the four girls assembled at the appointed time and began praying the Rosary. The Blessed Virgin appeared in a shining golden sphere, about three feet across that came out of the wall and unfolded itself as a rectangular curtain of silvery light, on which the rocky grotto stood out in relief. Her long hair was now hidden by her veil. Written across her breast in gold letters was the word “Magnificat.” The words on the block of stone underneath her feet had changed. Now the words on the rock read, “I am the Immaculate Conception.”
The girls were then joined by a certain Madame Trinson, who owned a shoe shop in the town. Blessed Mary, with a grave expression, showed the girls the golden cross of her rosary, and asked them to kiss it. Jacqueline and Nicole both stood up to do this, and Madame Trinson was amazed to see Jacqueline repeat her feat of the previous day, lifting up the two younger girls as though they were featherweight dolls so that they too could kiss the golden cross. The metal was cold to their lips and they were penetrated with a sense of Mary’s grief.
The Virgin then made a beautiful, but extremely slow, sign of the cross. It took two minutes to complete, and the girls copied her movements, with Madame Trinson looking on in astonishment. Once this was over Mary said that she would tell them a secret that they could reveal in three days. Blessed Mary repeated her urgent request to pray for France. She asked for a grotto to be built with the images of her and Gabriel to be placed within it. Then she asked that the priest come at two o’clock along with the children and a crowd, so that they could all pray.
Fr Ségelle refused to come and so Jacqueline, Jeanette and Laura, with about twenty other children and thirty adults, assembled in the church. After they had said ten Hail Mary’s, the Virgin and the angel appeared as before out of the golden ball. She asked for hymns and prayers before telling them to return each day at 1:00 p.m., until everything was over. At 5:30 p.m. Fr Ségelle informed the archbishop of the day’s events. That same day, to the surprise of everyone, the Russian Communists decided to abandon their plans of a general strike.
Approximately 150 people gathered the next day, December 10, to await the appearance of the Blessed Virgin. Suddenly the Virgin was present and requested a sung version of the Hail Mary. She then asked the girls to kiss her hand again. The crowd was amazed to see Jacqueline repeat her feat of effortlessly lifting the two smallest girls. During the apparition, Jacqueline’s mother called out to her daughter to request the Blessed Mother for a miracle so that all would believe. To this request Mary replied,
“I have not come to France to perform miracles, but to tell you to pray for France.” But then to Jacqueline, she said, “Tomorrow you will see clearly and will no longer have need of glasses.” Then she disappeared into a golden ball of light.
Jacqueline wore thick glasses and had to wipe her eyes often because of chronic conjunctivitis. When Jacqueline awoke the next morning, she was able to open her eyes without difficulty and then discovered that she now had normal vision! Overjoyed, her father rushed to tell Fr. Segelle about the miracle. The priest exclaimed, “So it is true that She has descended among us!”
Again at 1:00 p.m. the next day, December 11, the church was full of people. The Virgin asked the girls if they had prayed for sinners — to which they replied that they had. Then Mary led them through ten Hail Mary’s, but she only spoke the words with which Gabriel had greeted her at the Annunciation. Jacqueline asked Mary to heal people who had petitioned the girls for cures, to which the Virgin replied that she promised that there would be “happiness in families.” Before disappearing she again asked about the grotto. After this, the girls were questioned separately in the sacristy.
Three hundred people crowded into the church of St. Giles on December 12. Our Lady appeared wearing a crown composed of twelve sparkling rays – each about a foot long. These were interspersed with smaller ones of various colors — two narrow blue ones in the center and then five wider ones to each side, colored red, yellow, green, pink and a brownish red. After listening to the singing of the Hail Mary, the Virgin led the children again in saying ten Hail Mary’s of the Rosary – and again pronouncing only the words of the angel Gabriel. The word “Magnificat” was again visible in letters across her chest.
Five hundred people attended on the next day, December 13. This time Mary appeared without her crown. She indicated that the public miracle that had been requested would come “later.” Jacqueline was then told that the last apparition would occur on the next day.
The crowd of two thousand packed into the church of St. Giles (and around the outside of it) on December 14 and began praying the Rosary. The Blessed Virgin and Gabriel appeared and remained for over 30 minutes. At Our Lady’s request that the Magnificat be sung, Fr. Segelle sang it reverently with the people. Mother Mary asked for more prayers to be said for sinners. In response to the request for a miracle, Mary responded with a smile,
“Before I go, I will send a bright ray of sunlight.”
After blessing the people, Our Lady vanished. But a mysterious bright ray of sunshine streamed through a window and settled on the precise place of her appearance. Then it grew in size and intensity so that all had to shield their eyes. The four girls were surrounded by sparkles of various colors. The ray of light was later determined to be inexplicable in natural terms. Normally, such a beam of light would have been interrupted by some of the pillars of the church. Subsequent tests proved that it was physically impossible for a normal ray of sunlight to have entered that part of the church at that time of year because of the position of the sun. It was therefore declared to be a “miraculous occurrence.”
Fr. Segelle examined the girls separately and found them to be truthful and consistent with all the details of the appearances and with the 72 questions that he asked of each of them. After carefully studying the facts of the apparitions, Archbishop Honore approved Mary’s request for a grotto and began construction of it. He permitted pilgrimages and sanctioned the veneration of Our Lady under the title of “Our Lady of Prayer.” The grotto and statues were completed in November of 1988. Bishop Andre Vingt-Trois declared on December 8, 2001:
“Having carefully studied the events and taken council with appropriate persons, I authorize these pilgrimages, and all manner of public worship.”
The Secretary General of the Interior Ministry declared publicly (after meeting the girls):
“France was saved by the prayers of these four children and by the people here who prayed at the feet of the Virgin Mary.”
“Mediatrix of All Graces”
MARIENFRIED, GERMANY (1946)
The first supernatural event took place in Marienfried, near Paffenhofen, Germany on April 25, 1946. Barbara Reuss, age 12, was amazed when an angel appeared to her. The angel announced that he was “the Angel of the Great Mediatrix of Graces.” He instructed Barbara to kneel while he introduced a prayer to be addressed to the Blessed Virgin Mary. This was his prayer:
“Act as the Mother of Grace; act as the thrice miraculous Mother; the thrice admirable Mother of Grace, Thou Great Mediatrix of Graces!”
As the angel recited this prayer, the Blessed Virgin appeared in a brilliant light.
“She was unspeakably beautiful, brilliant, a blinding vision of the most pure light and radiance … Above her head were brilliant rays forming a three-tiered crown.”
Barbara asked, “Who are you?”
The answer: “If I didn’t have a veil, you would recognize me.” While leaving, Our Lady added, “May Christ’s peace be with you and with all those who will pray here.” As Blessed Mary raised her hand in blessing, she became as transparent as crystal – and so bright that Barbara was unable to look at her.
The second apparition occurred exactly one month later on May 25 with many people now in attendance with Barbara. This included the pastor, Father Humf, and his sister. The Blessed Virgin’s messages emphasized the recitation of the Rosary, devotion to the Holy Trinity, and consecration to her Immaculate Heart. Our Lady also warned of future events. Her messages were lengthy, but here are some of the highlights:
“I am the powerful Meditarix of Graces. As the world can find Mercy only through the sacrifice of the Son with the Father, so can you find favor with the Son through my intercession. Christ is unknown because I am not known. It is true that the world was consecrated to my Immaculate Heart, but this consecration has become a fearful responsibility for many men. I demand that the world live the consecration.”
“I am the sign of the Living God. I place my Sign on the foreheads of my children (those who consecrate themselves to my Immaculate Heart). Lucifer will persecute the sign, but my sign will conquer … Substitute my Immaculate Heart in place of your sinful hearts … Fulfill my request so that Christ may reign as the King of Peace.”
“The world will have to drain the cup of wrath to the dregs because of the countless sins through which His Heart is offended. The devil of the infernal regions will rage more violently than ever and will cause frightful destruction because he knows that his time is short, and because he sees that already many have gathered around my sign. Over these he has no spiritual power, although he will kill the bodies of many; but through these sacrifices my power to lead the remnant host to victory will increase …”
“Pray, make sacrifices for sinners. Pray the Rosary – not for external things; weightier things are at stake in these times. Expect no signs and wonders. I shall be active as the powerful Mediatrix in secret.”
“Some have already allowed my Sign to be impressed on them; their number will increase. But I want to tell you, my children, not to forget that the very cross of those bloody days is a grace.”
“The devil will be possessed of such power that those who are not firmly established in me will be deceived … You should establish everything in confidence to my Immaculate Heart. The devil has power over all people who do not trust in my heart.”
“In secret I shall work marvels in souls until the required number of victim souls will be filled. Upon you it depends to shorten the days of darkness. Bishops and priests should consecrate themselves to me … Pray always. Pray the Rosary. Keep the Saturdays which have been dedicated to me.”
“It is the will of the Father that the world acknowledge this position of His Handmaid.”
The third appearance of Our Lady occurred on June 25, exactly one month later, with many others in attendance.
“Bring many sacrifices and offerings to me. Offer your prayers to me as sacrifices. Be not seekers of self. That honor be shown to the Eternal and atonement be made to Him is required of these times. If you consecrate yourselves without reserve, I shall take care of all the rest. Crosses weighty and deep as the sea I shall lay upon my children, because I love them in my Sacrificed Son. I beseech you, be prepared to carry the cross that peace may soon be achieved.”
“Apostles and Priests should consecrate themselves to me especially, so that the great sacrifices which the Inscrutable One demands above all from them may, when placed in my hands, increase in sanctity and worth.”
“I have already given many signs and spoken often to the world, but people have not taken them seriously. On account of these outward signs the greater multitude do not even grasp the essential things. Outward signs only succeed in distracting many, who do not draw the necessary conclusions from them.”
“I urge my people to fulfill my wishes quickly, because today more than ever such fulfillment of my will is necessary for God’s greater honor and glory. The Father pronounces a dreadful woe upon all who refuse to obey His Will.”
Our Lady also underscored the great truth that she is Mediatrix of All Graces. After the Blessed Virgin ceased speaking, she was suddenly surrounded by an immense number of angels wearing long white garments. Kneeling on the earth, they bowed deeply and recited a homage to the Holy Trinity. On its completion, the angel asked Barbara to repeat the prayer. This was the same angel who had been present during the first apparition on April 25.
Father Humf had suspected that a message or special prayer might be given during this third appearance, so he was prepared to write down whatever was said. Although he could not know what was happening during the vision, he wrote down the following prayer as Barbara repeated it for him later. It was what the angel had requested for her to say in prayer. In a soft, rhythmic voice, Barbara said,
“Praise to You, eternal Ruler, Living God, always Being, fearful and righteous Judge, always kind and merciful Father. Your radiant Daughter will always worship, praise, honor, and obey you.”
After reviewing all aspects of the apparitions, the Bishop of Augsburg rendered a decision, finally, on March 20, 2000. The Bishop declared that the faithful are free to conduct pilgrimages and services at the Marian Shrine in Marienfried.
“Our Lady of Family Values”
GHIAIE DI BONATE, ITALY (1944)
World War II was tearing Italy apart when Our Lady chose to appear to send messages of hope and peace. On May 13, 1944, (anniversary of first Fatima apparition) Our Lady appeared to seven-year old Adelaide Roncalli over 13 days – May 13 through May 21, and from May 28 through May 31, 1944. Our Lady foretold her:
“You will suffer a lot, but do not cry, because then you will come with me into Paradise. In this valley of deep sorrows you will be a little martyr.”
First Apparition: On that late afternoon of 13th May, 1944, seven year-old Adelaide Roncalli went picking elder flowers and daisies along the path which slopes down by the pine wood to offer them to an image of Our Lady that hangs halfway down the staircase in her home. Her six-year-old sister, Palmina, and some little girl friends were with her.
From Adelaide’s diary:
“I was picking flowers for the image of the Virgin Mary which hangs halfway down the stairs in my home. I had also picked some daisies, and I had arranged them into a wheelbarrow that my Dad had made. I saw a beautiful elder flower, but it was far above my reach for me to pick. I stood there, admiring it, when I saw a golden spot coming down from above and drawing near the earth little by little; while it was approaching it got bigger and bigger, and I could make out the presence of a beautiful Lady with Baby Jesus in her arms and Saint Joseph on her left. The three persons were enveloped into three oval circles of light and remained suspended in space not far from the wires.
The Lady, beautiful and majestic, was wearing a white dress and a blue mantle; on her right arm she carried a Rosary made of white beads; on her bare feet two white roses stood. Her dress was set off by a string of pearls, all equal, tied in gold in the shape of a necklace. The circles enveloping the three persons were bright with shades of golden light. At first I was scared and was on the point of running away, but the Lady called me in a sweet voice and said,
“Do not run away, as I am the Virgin Mary!”
So I stopped, gazing at her, but I was a little afraid. The Virgin Mary looked at me, then added,
“You must be good, obedient, respectful of your neighbors and sincere. Pray well and come back to this place for nine evenings, always at this time.”
Our Lady looked at me for a few seconds and then slowly went off, without turning her back on me. I kept staring at them intently until a whitish cloud hid them from my view. Baby Jesus and Saint Joseph did not speak; they only looked at me with an amiable expression.”
Seeing Adelaide enraptured in ecstasy, her little friends called her and shook her, but without success, so much so that her sister Palmina, deeply impressed, ran to her mother to tell her that Adelaide was “dead but on her feet.” Slowly recovering from her ecstasy, Adelaide confided in her friends her vision of Our Lady, but she did not talk about that once back home so that the evening meal would take place peacefully. Her little friends were not as discrete though, and so the rumors started spreading in the village.
Second Apparition: Sunday, May 14, 1944, at 6:00 p.m.
From Adelaide’s diary:
“I was at the parish recreation center with my playmates, but towards six hours I felt a great wish to run to the place where Our Lady had invited me to. I was off like a shot with some of my mates; once on the place, I instinctively looked up and saw two white doves, then further up I saw the bright spot approach and turn into the clear and majestic form of the Holy Family. At first they smiled at me, then Our Lady repeated what she had told me yesterday,
“You must be good, obedient and sincere, and you must pray well and be respectful of your neighbor. Between your fourteenth and fifteenth year, you will become a Sacramentina nun. You will suffer a lot, but do not weep, as you will come with me to Paradise!”
Then she went away slowly and disappeared like the evening before. I felt a tremendous joy in my heart on account of the plain words of Our Lady, and the impression of her sweet presence was deeply engraved in my mind. I went back to the recreation center with my mates; halfway down the road I met a good boy who questioned me. When I confirmed I had seen Our Lady, he anxiously asked me, “Go back and see if she appears again, then try and ask her if I may become a priest and devote my life to Her.”
I went back hurriedly, and looked up, hoping Our Lady would come back. After few minutes, Her beautiful presence manifested itself again. I expressed Candido’s wish again (the boy was present this time). She answered in a sweet and motherly voice:
“Yes, he will become a Missionary Father according to my Sacred Heart, when the war is over.”
After saying so, she slowly disappeared. When the vision was over, I felt my apron pulled by the boy who apprehensively asked me what Our Lady had said. I reported Our Lady’s words to him and he ran home happily to tell his mother about this. I went back home with my friends, and I felt a big joy in my heart. Our Lady, before going away, had told me to come back again for seven evenings.”
Adelaide soon experienced the truth of the second prophecy. That evening, over the family supper, she was harshly rebuked. Father A. Tentori writes that in this apparition Our Lady confirmed Candido’s vocation “to whom She smiled,” but then Adelaide let out a brief cry and hid her face in her hands without explaining why. She had probably learned about the suffering that that vocation would cost her friend. Meanwhile, the news of the apparitions had crossed the frontier of Ghiaie di Bonate.
Third Apparition: Monday, May 15, 1944, at 6:00 p.m. Adelaide saw a “brighter than usual” vision of the Holy Family with 2 little girlfriends and 100 other people.
From Adelaide’s diary:
“Little before six o’clock, I reached the place of the apparitions with my girlfriends, Itala Corna and Giulia Marcolini. It took me quite a long time to get there as the road was crowded. The bright spot — preceded by the two white doves — appeared soon and slowly came nearer and nearer, showing the Holy Family in a brighter way than usual. Baby Jesus’ bright blue eyes of this apparition attracted my attention especially. His frock — which covered Him from tip to toe — was threadbare in the shape of a pink-colored, gold-starred shirt. Our Lady was wearing a blue dress with a white long veil coming down from her head. Small stars formed a glory around her face; on her feet she had two roses, and in her joined hands, the Rosary.
Many people had urged me to ask Our Lady to heal their children and to ask when peace would come. I reported everything to the Lady — who answered me,
“Tell them that if they want their children to be healed, they must repent, pray a lot, and avoid certain sins. If people repent soon, the war will finish in two months; otherwise, it will go on for two more years.”
She showed her beads with me, then they slowly drew away and disappeared.”
From the stream of people who arrived afterwards, it was believed that all the prayers and repentance that Our Lady had asked for had been accomplished, and everybody thought that the war would finish within two months’ time. Instead, two months after that 15th of May, on Thursday the 20th of July, there was the attempt on Hitler’s life, which caused the beginning of Germany’s decline and its successive defeat. The war lasted until the end of Easter, 1945, with the gradual cessation of hostilities. Our Lady had foretold that event exactly: “little less than two years”.
Fourth Apparition: Tuesday, May 16, 1944. In the afternoon Adelaide went to the parish recreation center where she was questioned by Sister Concetta about the apparitions. Adelaide revealed, among other things, that Our Lady’s manifestations were always preceded by the flight of two white birds, and that the Virgin Mary spoke in the Bergamasque dialect. The child went back home quickly but had to press her parents to be allowed to go to her appointment with Our Lady at 6:00 p.m. With about 150 people in attendance, Adelaide saw the vision of the Holy Family again.
From Adelaide’s diary:
“On occasion of this apparition I had to ask insistently for the time to the crowd surrounding my house, as everybody made me believe it was only five, but in my heart, I knew it was six — the time schedule given to me by Our Lady. At my urging of letting me go, a man took me up in his arms and walked as far as the place of the apparitions. Similarly to the other evenings the bright spot appeared in the sky preceded by the two doves, and Our Lady with Baby Jesus and Saint Joseph manifested themselves again. Their clothes were the same as the previous day. The Virgin Mary smiled at me, then with a sorrowful expression she said,
“Many mothers have impaired children on account of their great sins (drugs, alcohol); let’s get them to sin no more, and their children will be healed.”
I asked for a visible sign in order to satisfy the wishes of the people. She answered,
“That will come in due time. Pray for the poor sinners who need the children’s prayers.”
After saying that, Mary went off and disappeared.”
Fifth Apparition: Wednesday, May 17, 1944. That same day was the last time that Adelaide attended the primary school of Ghiaie di Bonate. She was questioned by her teacher about the apparitions, and her story sounded convincing. When back home, Adelaide was taken to her room by her mother who asked her, weeping, about the truth of the apparitions. Adelaide confirmed them once again. At 6:00 p.m., Adelaide saw the Blessed Virgin along with eight angels while 3,000 people observed.
From Adelaide’s diary:
“When the usual time came, I went to the place of the apparitions. The two doves preceded the bright spot, and Our Lady showed herself dressed in red; she also wore a green mantle with a long trail. Around the three light circles there were eight angels alternatively dressed in blue and pink, all below Our Lady’s elbows, arranged in a semicircle. As soon as I saw Our Lady, she spoke to me right away and confided a secret reserved for the Bishop and the Pope — using these words:
“Tell the Bishop and the Pope the secret I am confiding to you … I advise you to do what you are told, but do not tell this to anyone else.”
Then She slowly disappeared.”
Three days later, on the 20th May, Adelaide was taken to the Bishop’s for revealing the secret. What was so important in the secret for the Bishop to go to Gandino on purpose, towards the middle of June, 1944, where the young girl was at the time, to have it repeated to him? Adelaide was also taken to Rome in 1949 and was granted a private audience by Pope Pius XII to whom she confided the secret Our Lady had revealed on the 17th of May, 1944.
Sixth Apparition: Thursday, May 18, 1944, at 6:00 p.m. (Assumption Day) The crowd grew larger very quickly at Ghiaie di Bonate. Everybody wanted to see the child, and many were really worried about her safety. A Roman sergeant helped the small group reach the place of the apparitions. With 7,000 people in attendance, Adelaide again sees the Blessed Virgin with eight angels.
From Adelaide’s diary:
“During the recreation hours, I kept thinking of the Lady and towards five I went for a snack in order to be punctual at the place of the apparitions. Our Lady’s visit was preceded by the two doves. The Virgin was dressed in red with her green mantle, surrounded by little angels, like yesterday. Our Lady smiled at me, then for three times She repeated these words:
“Prayers and repentance. Pray for the poor stubborn sinners who are dying in this moment and who pierce my Heart”.
Many people had urged me to ask Our Lady which prayer She appreciated better.
I expressed this wish, and She answered,
“The prayer I like best is the Hail Mary.”
After saying this, Our Lady slowly disappeared.”
Seventh Apparition: Friday, May 19, 1944, at 6:00 p.m. On that day the bills of the faithful were carried to the place of apparition with their supplications. There was a large crowd and Adelaide reached the place with great difficulty. From that evening on, Doctor Eliana Maggi would always attend the event alongside the girl. Adelaide saw the Holy Family vision while 10,000 people looked on.
From Adelaide’s diary:
“Like all the other evenings I went to the usual place where a granite slab had been laid down for me to get on to during the apparitions. I saw the bright spot and the presence of the Holy Family in it. Our Lady was wearing a veil and her light-blue dress. A white sash was tied round her waist; she had roses on her feet and the beads in her hands. Baby Jesus was still wearing a golden-starred, pink frock, and kept His small hands clasped. His face was serene and nearly smiling. Saint Joseph was serene but did not smile; he was dressed in brown, from his shoulders a length of brown material hung down like a cloak, and he held a stick with a lily in blossom on its top. There were also some angels.
Our Lady looked at me smiling, but I began to speak first and expressed the wish of many with these words, “Dear Lady, the people told me to ask you whether their sick children must be carried here for being healed.” In a heavenly voice, She answered,
“No, it is not necessary for everybody to come here; those who can afford it may come and they will be healed or remain sick according to their sacrifices, but they must not commit great sins anymore.”
I begged Her to work a miracle so that the people might believe her words. She answered:
“The time for it will come, many will be converted, and I will be recognized by the Church.” Then She added gravely, “Meditate upon these words all the days of your life, summon up your courage in all your sorrows. You will see me again in the hour of your death; I will keep you under my cloak and will take you to Heaven.”
Eighth Apparition: Saturday, May 20, 1944, at 6:00 p.m. Adelaide, escorted by the parish priest Don Cesare Vitali and her cousin, Maria, went to Bergamo to the Bishop’s in order to reveal to him the secret disclosed by the Virgin Mary. Her cousin spoke to the Bishop about the announcement given by Adelaide of a miracle that would happen at the end of the first cycle of apparitions. That evening at Ghiaie, there was a huge crowd waiting for Adelaide. Adelaide sees the Holy Family again in the sky while 30,000 people watch.
From Adelaide’s diary:
“Like all the other evenings I got on to the granite slab and waited for Our dear Lady to show herself. The Holy Family appeared again, and Our Lady told me,
“Tomorrow will be the last time I speak to you, then for seven days I will let you reflect on what I have told you. Try and get my words straight, as they will be very useful for you when you grow up, if you want to become all mine. After these seven days, I will come back four times more.”
Her voice sounded so harmonious and sweet that, so far as I tried to reproduce it, I was never able to.”
Doctor Eliana Maggi testified under oath on January 16, 1946, before the Episcopal Committee,
“That Saturday was a rainy day. At the outset of the apparition a sun ray shone on the child’s head. I raised my eyes to the sky and saw a cross-shaped rift in the sky and a shower of golden and silvery spots for a minute or two, and everybody hailed it as a miracle.”
Don Luigi Cortesi wrote,
“Somebody noticed a strange beam of light shining upon the child and reverberating over the surrounding faces. Others noticed the sun had a cross shape. Others saw the solar disc whirl dizzily, forming a ring not larger than half a meter. In the lower layers of the atmosphere some people saw a rain of golden stars, small yellow clouds in the shape of hoops – so thick and near that somebody tried to catch them in full flight. On the onlooker’s hands and faces the most various colors shaded off with the yellow color prevailing over the others. Phosphorescent hands were seen; light globes in the shape of Hosts… “
Ninth Apparition: Sunday, May 21, 1944, at 6:00 p.m. Adelaide is accompanied by 200,000 people and sees the Holy Family again. The apparition of that Sunday was the last of the first cycle. Since the early morning, a “human stream” flowed into Ghiaie di Bonate. A sturdy fence was raised all around the place of the apparitions and in the late afternoon some keen men got several sick people to lie down inside it. During the apparition, Adelaide was submitted to several tests by the physicians present.
From Adelaide’s diary:
“This apparition was also preceded by the doves, and the Holy Family revealed itself in the bright spot. They were dressed like yesterday.”
Many testimonies from the site of the apparition and from surrounding villages described an impressive solar phenomenon. The sun came out of the clouds, whirled dizzily on itself, and projected beams of yellow, green, red, blue, and violet light in all directions. The beams of light colored the clouds, fields, trees, and the stream of people. After a few minutes the sun stopped its whirling, and those phenomena began soon again. Many noticed that the disc had turned white like a Host. The clouds seemed to be lowering down on the people. Some noticed a Rosary in the sky. Others saw a majestic Our Lady with a trailing cloak. Some people, who were at a greater distance, saw Our Lady’s face looming in the Sun. From nearby Bergamo many witnesses observed the sun become pale and radiate all of the rainbow’s colors in all directions. They also noticed a large yellow light beam falling over Ghiaie, perpendicularly.
Tenth Apparition: Sunday, May 28, 1944. Adelaide spent the week fruitfully in a spiritual retreat in Bergamo, at the Orsoline Sisters’, in order to prepare herself for her First Communion. Several pilgrims arrived at Ghiaie di Bonate, urged by their great faith. The rumor of miraculous healings had spread. On Whit Sunday, Adelaide received her First Communion and was soon taken back to Bergamo into the Sisters’ convent. She would go back to the place of the apparitions in the late afternoon. At 6:00 p.m., Adelaide sees the Virgin Mary along with two saints on either side of her. There were 300,000 people in attendance! (about the size of four Super Bowl crowds!)
From Adelaide’s diary:
“On this day I received my First Communion. Like all the other evenings, I was taken to the place of the apparitions, and the bright spot appeared again, revealing Our Lady with the angels and two Saints at her side. The Lady told me,
“Pray for the stubborn sinners who make my Heart suffer because they do not think of death. Pray also for the Holy Father who is living difficult moments. He is ill-treated by many, and many attempt his life. I will protect him and he will not leave the Vatican. Peace is coming soon, but I am anxious for that world peace in which everybody loves one another like brothers. Only in this way the Pope will suffer less.”
Our Lady held two black doves in her hands. They stand for the harmony that married couples must have in order to create blessed families in the presence of Our Lady. She teaches also that there cannot exist a blessed family without living trustfully in Our Lady’s motherly hands. Our Lady did not reveal the name of those two Saints she had at her sides. The two Saints were dressed in violet and wore a brown cloak. Our Lady was dressed in red and wore her green mantle. She also wore a crown-shaped diadem studded with small, bright, variously-colored pearls. She turned her eyes to the two Saints, then slowly disappeared.”
The solar phenomena repeated itself – seen not only in Ghiaie, but from very distant locations. The parish journal of Tavernola, dated June, 1944, described,
“At 18 hours sharp (6:00 p.m.), people noticed a fading of the solar light together with a flash – similar to sudden lightning. The sun looked green, then bright red, then gold yellow. Furthermore, it whirled dizzily. On seeing that spectacle, people poured into the streets.”
Eleventh Apparition: Monday, May 29, 1944. On that Monday a stream of people flowed to the place of the apparitions. The influx of sick and invalid people was so impressive at Ghiaie di Bonate that a special service of volunteers, Red Cross nurses, doctors, and ambulances had to be on hand. There were many miraculous recoveries in the field — so much so that Bergamo’s Curia established a special office for the customary investigations. At 6:32 p.m., Adelaide saw the Virgin Mary with angels. Again, 300,000 people were in attendance!
From Adelaide’s diary:
“Also in this apparition the Virgin Mary appeared with some angels, dressed in red and with her green mantle; her manifestation was preceded by the two doves and the bright spot. She held the two black doves in her hands and carried a Rosary on her arm. The Blessed Virgin smiled at me and said:
“The sick who want to be healed must trust me more and sanctify their suffering if they want to earn Paradise. If they do not do this, they will not be awarded and will be severely punished instead. I hope that all those who get to know my words will make every kind of effort to earn Paradise. Those who suffer without complaining will obtain anything they ask from my Son and me. Pray a lot for those who have a sick soul; my Son Jesus died on the cross to save them. Many people do not understand these words of mine — that is why I suffer so much.”
While Our Lady was touching her mouth to send me a kiss by joining her forefinger and thumb, the two doves fluttered around her and escorted the Blessed Virgin while she went off very slowly”.
Twelfth Apparition: Tuesday, May 30, 1944, at 6:50 p.m. That day the sultriness was oppressive. Besides heat and weariness, people pushed frightfully on the enclosure, which was really tough to withstand. With 250,000 people eagerly waiting and watching, Adelaide sees the Virgin Mary with angels.
From Adelaide’s diary:
“In this apparition the Blessed Virgin appeared dressed in pink with a white veil. She had the dark doves with her no more; around Her there were only angels. With a more than motherly smile She told me,
“Dear child, you are all mine, but even if you are dearest to my heart, tomorrow, I’ll leave you in this valley of sorrow and weep. You will see me again in your hour (of death); I will take you to Paradise enwrapped in my mantle. I will also take with me those who understand you and suffer.”
She blessed me and went off more quickly than the other evenings.
Thirteenth Apparition: Wednesday, May 31, 1944, at 8:00 p.m. The flow of pilgrims from everywhere carried on incessantly from the night before. The authorities were worried for the public order. It is believed that more than 90,000 people arrived from Piedmont, many of whom were on foot. That afternoon, the sun rays were scorching on the huge crowd. Towards 6:30 p.m., Adelaide was carried by a commissioner to the place of the apparitions in his arms. Adelaide complained of sharp pains in her inside. The doctors consulted together. In spite of the pain, nobody could persuade her to go home. Then, suddenly, she got up on her feet and started praying. After some time, she said firmly, “She is coming any moment now!” She let out a deep sigh, and then her look became clear and radiant. The Holy Family was there. About 350,000 people were in attendance for the last apparition. A solar phenomenon was again seen at Ghiaie and from other locations. Many healings occurred on this day and soon afterwards – about 300 documented complete recoveries.
From Adelaide’s diary: Our Lady appeared at eight that day. She was dressed like in the first apparition. She smiled but not so cheerfully like on the other occasions, but her voice was sweet. “Dear daughter, I am sorry I must leave you, but my time has passed. Do not lose heart if you do not see me for a while. Think of what I have told you; I will come back in your hour (of death). You will be a little martyr in this valley of real sorrows. Do not get discouraged, I wish my triumph to happen soon. Pray for the Pope and tell him to act quickly, because I want to be solicitous to everyone in this place. If anything is required from me, I will intercede with my Son for it. I will be your award if your martyrdom is cheerful. These words of mine will be of great comfort to you in your trials. Endure everything patiently and then you will reach me in Paradise. Those who make you suffer intentionally will not come to Heaven if they do not make amends for their wrongs and do not repent deeply. Cheer up, because we will meet again, my dea little martyr.”
I felt a sweet and gentle kiss on my forehead. Then she disappeared like she had done the other evenings. The two white doves preceded each visit of Our Lady. The Blessed Virgin always had white roses on her feet.”
The solar phenomenon was observed also on the 31st of May, both at Ghiaie and in other places. Many recoveries took place on that day.
June 13 and July 13, 1944: The solar phenomena repeated its “performance” – on the 13th of each month for two more months.
After the apparitions, Adelaide was isolated, intimidated, frightened and psychologically tortured, insomuch as a scholar pushed his way into doing his own investigation. Don Luigi Cortesi, a young philosopher and brilliant teacher of Bergamo’s Seminary, arrived at Ghiaie on Friday, May 19, 1944. He soon took action with the typical scholar’s inquiring attitude, with urbanity and amiability – so much so that it was not difficult for him to take the matter in his hands and play the role of inquisitor of the events connected with Ghiaie. He did not act with a bishop mandate, but of his own free will. By attending the apparitions, he infringed the Bishop’s prohibition, but he thought that the church authorities would allow somebody to infringe the prohibition in order to investigate and report the events. On May 22, he gave an abundant account to the bishop, who did not reproach him, but thanked him instead. He interpreted those thanks like an implied consent and went on studying the little girl, who in the meantime had been taken to Bergamo. On May 27, the implied consent became an explicit permission, and from that day on, Don Cortesi took the matter into his own hands.
After the apparitions ended, the child was taken away from Ghiaie, and Don Cortesi gave orders that nobody could approach the girl without his permission. Don Cortesi submitted the young girl to the hardest trials for a long time, relentlessly pressing the child’s psyche and conscience harshly. Finally, on September 15, 1945, he succeeded in making her retract the truth by deceitfully forcing her to write the following,
“It is not true that I saw Our Lady. I told a lie, because I saw nothing. I did not have the courage to speak the truth, but then I told everything to Don Cortesi. Now I regret having told so many lies.”
But here is how Adelaide reported this situation in her personal diary:
“In a room of the Orsoline’s convent in Bergamo, after closing all doors, Don Cortesi dictated the words to be written on the wretched note. I remember perfectly that, on account of the state of moral violence I was being submitted to, I stained it, and he split the sheet of paper and made me write it again, with great patience, in order to reach his aim. That’s how the betrayal was carried out.”
Things became worse for a long time as Don Cortesi carried on with his cruel inquisitional action. After receiving increasing protests from honest people, Bergamo’s bishop was obliged to prohibit Don Cortesi from approaching the child. But it was too late – as the phony statement cast great concerns and doubts upon the whole affair. Once Adelaide was back with her family for a few weeks, she reasserted in writing the following on July 12, 1946,
“It is true that I saw Our Lady. I formerly said that I did not see Our Lady because Don Cortesi had dictated this to me, and I wrote what he wanted, out of obedience.”
This paper was signed by seven witnesses, including a parish priest and four nuns. Another diary entry by Adelaide demonstrates the fear and negative psychological impact that Don Cortesi had upon her:
“In 1947, I went to the ‘Wisdom Sisters’ – and here I made a big mistake. I related all that had happened in the apparitions, claiming with precision that I had seen Our Lady and heard her words. Towards the end of my narration I was seized with fear – Don Cortesi’s words, ‘You do evil when you claim you have seen Our Lady’ overwhelmed me. At first I kept silent. Then I made up my mind to repeat what I had learned from Don Cortesi, and so I said that I had not seen the Virgin Mary.”
On July 11, 1944, Father Agostino Gemelli, a world-famous psychiatrist and psychologist, expressly entrusted by the bishop with the in-depth examinations of Adelaide Roncalli, wrote the following in the conclusions of his long report to Monsignor Bernareggi, bishop of Bergamo.
“Lying can be absolutely ruled out … her personality is dominated by spontaneity, simplicity, directness … We are witnessing a precociously positive type, realistic and concise – that is furthermost from the hysterical type… We can declare that the claimed visions of Bonate are true and are not the fruit of a sick mind, neither an effect of imagination, nor an effect of suggestion.”
The Theological Committee, unfortunately, was swayed instead by the persuasive arguments of Don Cortesi, the self-appointed, unethical scholar over the world-famous psychiatrist! Between May 21 and June 10, 1947, the spiritual court met, and Adelaide was summoned unexpectedly to bear witness. The infamous note that Cortesi had coerced her to write against her will was presented. Adelaide felt deceived by Don Cortesi, so she chose to be silent and weep. She was afraid to expose Don Cortesi as a fraud in front of so many priests. She explained later that she chose to be silent to avoid the emotional dilemma.
This did not help the truth to come forth, so on April 30, 1948, the bishop of Bergamo issued a decree denouncing the apparitions. However, in a strange maneuver of wording, he explained that the documented genuine healings during the “phony” apparitions were coincidental divine acts granted by the Virgin Mary because of those in the crowd who had sincere beliefs – not due to Adelaide Roncalli’s presence or words. So, Mary was present for others and healed them for their devout faith? But she was not present for Adelaide who was responsible for attracting the crowds? How twisted is that logic?
One year later in 1949, Pope Pius XII granted the child Adelaide a private audience, certainly professing his faith in the apparitions simply by receiving her. He listened carefully to the secret intended for him from Our Lady that Adelaide revealed to him from the fifth apparition on May 17, 1944.
On July 8, 1960, Pope John XXIII sent a letter regarding the Ghiaie events:
“We must allow for the circumstances that need to be studied and valued above all things. What is valid is ‘subjecta materia’ — is the seer’s witness – and the authenticity of what she still maintains at 21 years of age and in conformity with her first statement at 7 years of age – but withdrawn on account of the threats and fears of hell exerted by somebody. It seems to me that the terror for those threats still persists.”
On occasion of the 30th anniversary of the apparitions, Mr. Cortinovis presented the bishop, Clemente Gaddi, a petition signed by 7,000 worshippers who expressed the wish to pray at the place of the apparitions with the bishop’s permission. Monsignor Gaddi answered that he could not reopen the trial unless in the presence of new, serious, and substantial elements – and that the provisions of previous bishops would remain in force. But he added that he could neither prohibit nor prevent people from going there to pray.
On February 20, 1989, Adelaide Roncalli decided to reassert, solemnly and officially, before a notary public, the truthfulness of the apparitions:
“On the occasion of the 45th anniversary of the apparitions I declare hereby again that I am absolutely persuaded of having had the Apparitions of Our Lady of Ghiaie di Bonate from the 13th to the 31st of May, 1944 … with clear conscience and in full possession of my mental faculties, I deem to be the plain truth …”
Despite the sincere interest and support by two popes, the psychiatric “bill of health” by a world-renown psychiatrist, the genuine healings of hundreds of people, and the hundreds of thousands who witnessed the supernatural events, one man managed to coerce and traumatize our 7-year old visionary – creating doubt and confusion — a mess that nobody has been able to untangle or resolve. And thus, one of the grandest of apparition encounters had remained hidden from our awareness because it had existed only in the “rejected” category of the Marian files, due to one man’s unethical and abusive — yet trusted efforts. However, beginning in 2002, the apparitions are now becoming accepted and have received the first level of approval. Now 76 years old, in 2013, Adelaide continues to assert the truthfulness of the apparitions. Our Blessed Mother was correct when she predicted,
“You will suffer a lot, but do not cry …
In this valley of deep sorrows, you will be a little martyr.”
In a later apparition in another part of Italy, Our Blessed Mary referred to the “work she had tried to accomplish at Bonate.” In 1996, in a series of apparitions in Brazil, South America, Our Lady referred to Ghiaie di Bonate several times – a place the visionary had never heard of. Blessed Mary is validating her own appearances!
“Our Lady of All Nations”
AMSTERDAM, HOLLAND (1945-1959)
Ida Peerdeman was 39 years old when the first apparition of Mary came to her in Amsterdam on March 25, 1945, on the Feast of the Annunciation – which was also Palm Sunday that year. While she and her sisters were sitting around a ceramic heating stove, discussing the current troubles from World War II, Ida saw a light in the corner of an adjoining room and was drawn to it. Out of the light came Our Lady. Mary asked Ida to repeat after her what she was about to say. Then Mary spoke slowly, and Father Frehe told Ida’s sister to write down what Ida was saying. From1945 to 1959, the Blessed Virgin appeared to Ida Peerdeman 56 times. Our Lady requested the official recognition of her vocation as “Co-Redemptrix, Mediatrix, and Advocate. Mary then promised that as “The Lady of All Nations” she would “give peace, true peace, to the world.”
Through her various messages to Ida, Our Lady describes in detail how her image should appear, what those details mean, and how it should be crafted.
“I am standing on the globe, and both of my feet are set upon it firmly. You also see my hands clearly as well as my face, hair, and veil. The rest is as in a haze … Now, I will explain to you why I come in this form. I stand as the Lady before the Cross – with head, hands, and feet of a human being – but with the body, however, of the Spirit, because the Son came through the will of the Father. The Father and the Son want to bring me into this world as Coredemptrix, Mediatrix, and Advocate. This will be the new and final Marian dogma. This image will precede. This dogma will be much disputed, yet it will be carried through.”
The following is a selection of messages from her 56 visits, demonstrating some very interesting and accurate predictions:
March 25, 1945:
(First apparition) Blessed Mary gives Ida the date “May 5,” shows her a Rosary and says, “It is thanks to this.” Ida is given a vision in which she sees many Allied soldiers in front of her. Mary takes the crucifix of the Rosary and points at the soldiers, saying, “These will soon go home.” Just a little over a month later, on May 5, 1945, the Allied forces liberated Holland from Nazi occupation – exactly as Our Lady had foretold.
April 21, 1945: Ida describes a vision in which people are fleeing and moving away.
“I am told that this is the exodus of Jews from Egypt – and that Israel will rise again. A representation of God the Father appears in the clouds. He is holding His hand over His eyes, and the Lady tells me that Yahweh is ashamed of His people.” Just three years later, the state of Israel became independent on May 14, 1948. Israel today is increasingly a secular state (42% according to a recent Israeli government poll) with 25% admitting to “not being very religious.” One could imagine that this secularism would be an offense toward God coming from His “chosen people.”
August 29, 1945:
Ida gets a glimpse of what would be the Gulf War in 1990-1991. “This is a new yet strange war, much later, which will cause terrible disaster.” Images from that war were later confirmed by Ida as what she had seen. But since she died in 1996, she cannot tell us if it might have actually been the bigger conflict in 2003.
October 7, 1945: Ida describes (in a vision from Mary) seeing “China with a red flag.”
Four years later in 1949, Chinese communist forces led by Mao Tse-tung defeated the nationalist forces and established the People’s Republic of China – with a red flag flying over its new capital in Beijing.
Also, in her message of that same date, Blessed Mary tells of the end of the Cold War some 44 years later. Ida describes “swastikas beneath the Cross. I see time fall, then stars – they fall away; sickles and hammers – everything falls beneath the Cross.” The Cold War ended with the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989. The flag of the Soviet Union contains a sickle and a hammer.
August 30, 1947:
Our Lady gave Ida visions which showed the close coordination between the United States and the Vatican that would happen decades later. Ida was told that at that time in the future “the Pope is kept informed of everything.” Ida was shown a large room in the Vatican with the Pope seated there. Secret meetings are being held there. There is an envoy from the United States and “all sorts of papers are in front of the Pope.” Sure enough, decades later, President Reagan secretly made a decision to share U.S. intelligence with Pope John Paul II to keep the Pontiff privy to events unfolding behind the eroding Iron Curtain. President Reagan dispatched key intelligence officials to brief the Pope in Rome.
December 26, 1947:
Ida had a vision of conflict embroiling the Middle East. “All at once, I see Cairo clearly, and I get a strange feeling about it. Then I see various Eastern peoples: Persians (Iranians), Arabs, and so on. Mary tells her, “The world is going to be torn in two … Great sorrow and misery will come.” Then Ida sees a great crack appearing, a break winding right over the world. Heavy clouds are hanging over it, and she feels great sorrow and misery. The recent Egyptian revolution that started in 2011 might be the unfolding of Our Lady’s prophecy about Cairo. This uprising is a watershed event similar to the Iranian revolution of 1979. Perhaps Our Lady was also referring to the Islamic world being ripped in half between the Arab Sunni and the Iran Shia groups.
On this same date Our Lady warned of more conflict to come in the Middle East. Ida has another vision: “I see a round dome. I am given to understand that it is a dome in Jersualem.” The Dome of the Rock is a domineering and captivating feature of Jerusalem’s skyline. Mary says, “In and around Jerusalem heavy battles will be waged.” This could refer to a number of conflicts over the years.
Another message on this same date involved a foretelling of chemical and biological warfare. Ida describes her vision from Mary in great detail:
“Then I see a very peculiar scene. I have to look at the sky, and something seems to be launched into it. There is something flying past me so rapidly that I can hardly see it. It is shaped like a cigar or torpedo, and its color is like that of aluminum. All of a sudden, I see something shooting off from the back. I feel about with my hand, and different terrible sensations come over me. At first, a total numbness. I live and yet I do not live. Then I see horrible images of people before me. I see faces, wide faces, covered with dreadful ulcers, something like leprosy. Then I feel terrible deadly diseases: cholera, leprosy – everything those people have to suffer. Then that is gone again, and I see tiny black things floating about me. I try to feel what it is, but that is not possible. It seems to be very fine matter. With my eyes I cannot discern what it is. It is as if I would have to look through something, and below I now see brilliant white fields. Upon those fields I see those little black things, but enlarged, and it is as if they are alive. I don’t know how to describe this properly. I ask Mary, “Are these bacilli?” She answers,
“It is hellish… and that is what they are inventing… that Russia, but others as well. Peoples be warned!”
Then I feel my face and my whole body swelling. It feels like my face gets very bloated, and everything is stiff and swollen. I cannot move.”
Despite more than one hundred countries signing an international ban on chemical and biological weapons at the 1972 Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention, two Russian scientists revealed that Russia had employed as many as 30,000 people to secretly work on such weapons by the late 1980’s.
March 28, 1948 (Easter):
Blessed Mary continues to share her concerns about the Middle East: “The gates are opening. The Eastern peoples are holding their hands before their faces in Jerusalem. They will wail over their city.”
October 1, 1949:
Ida sees a conflict in the Balkans, 42 years before it happens. “There is a war there; there is much fighting.” Mary tells her, “Child there will be a severe fight. Economic disasters will come.” As predicted, the former Yugoslavia in the Balkans was ripped apart between 1991 and 1995 which led to the creation of three separate nationstates: Croatia, Serbia, and Bosnia.
Our Lady made emphatic warnings about Russia’s future experimentation and development of chemical and biological weapons. She showed Ida a vision:
“The Lady takes me along to glass buildings, underground, too – all kinds of people are working there. These seem to be Germans, Frenchmen, Poles, but others, too. I hear them speaking different languages. It seems to be deep in Russia, somewhere in the great uninhabited plains of northern Russia. Mary says,”
“They are making chemicals there. America, be warned! Intervene, do intervene! Not only human lives are at issue here, but higher powers.”
December 16, 1949:
During a visit from Our Lady, Ida is given a vision of “a sign on which is written 50-51-53.” Mary tells her that during this period there will be a fight and disasters. These were the years (1950-1953) of the Korean War which started one year after her vision from Mary. Later, Our Blessed Mary tells Ida more details:
“The fighting in Korea is a sham and the start of a great misery. By this I mean that there will be periods of apparent tranquility. But this will not last long. The Eastern peoples have been roused by a type of humanity which does not believe in My Son.”
Ida then, in 1950, saw “demarcations being made at intervals” with “barbed wire and walls” – three years before the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) was formed. The so-called truce between North and South Korea has been a false one or “sham” as violent skirmishes continue to this day with recent attacks and 50 deaths in 2010.
August 15, 1950 (Feast of the Assumption):
Ida envisions Taiwan and another island nearby, feeling that something big would happen there. Taiwan is where the Chinese nationalists fled when the communist Chinese revolution occurred in 1949. China would love to claim these islands. In this message Mary exclaims, “America, take warning here!” Four years later, President Dwight Eisenhower used veiled threats of nuclear weapons to hold off communist China’s attempts to invade in 1954, 1955, and 1958.
December 10, 1950:
Ida is given a vision from Mary in which she sees “a glaring light, a blinding light in Russia. It is as if it explodes from the ground upward. It is a horrible sight.”
Mary tells her that she “will no longer see anything” because she would “be blinded by that light.” Ida then felt something very disgusting come over her…
“I saw a scorched plain. It is a ghastly sight, just as if death had gone over it.”
Three years later in 1953, Russia detonated its most powerful hydrogen bomb.
On that same date, she again foretells the end of the Cold War. Mary describes a “thick line in Germany… Europe is divided in two. I will remove that line with one sweep of the hand.” Thirty-nine years later, the Berlin Wall that divided Germany for decades came down quickly without any resistance.
April 2, 1951: “The world is not saved by force; the world will be saved by the Spirit. See that my prayer is made known throughout the world, among all the nations. They all have a right to it. I assure you that the world will change.”
April 29, 1951:
“For the world is not saved by force. The world will be saved by the Spirit. For it is nothing other than ideas which rule the world.”
July 2, 1951:
“The first and greatest commandment is Love. One who possesses love will honor one’s Lord and Creator in His creation. One who possesses love will do nothing dishonorable towards one’s neighbor. That is what this world lacks: Love of God, Love of neighbor.”
November 15, 1951: “I was Co-Redemptrix from the moment of the Annunciation. The Mother has been constituted Co-Redemptrix by the will of the Father. Tell this to your theologians. Tell them likewise that this dogma will be the last in Marian history.”
December 31, 1951:
Blessed Mary predicts, “After much fighting, China will return to Mother Church.
After much fighting.” Perhaps this is a civil war yet to come in China as Catholics are still persecuted there, and there is much tension with the Vatican over the selection of bishops.
February 17, 1952: “The Lord Jesus Christ came and brought the Church and the Cross as a gift from the Lord and Creator. The Church is, and will remain.”
December 8, 1952:
“Realize why I come as the Lady of All Nations. I come in order to bring all nations together in the Spirit, in the true Holy Spirit. People, learn to find the Holy Spirit. Strive after Righteousness, Truth, and Love. Do not reject your brothers. Teach them to know the True Spirit. A burdensome task lies upon the people of this time. Authorities, parents, think about the youth. Bring them to the true Church, the community.”
March 20, 1953: “The time is here, the time in which the world shall know that I have come here as the Lady of All Nations. I want this to be made known to the world now. Tell this to the Pope’s Sacrista. This is my message to him. You shall not fear anything. He shall read all the messages and pass them on to the Holy Father. Do not be afraid, child. You will get there. Have no fear. For I am the one bringing the message. The time has come. (a long pause) 1953 – that is the year of the Lady of All Nations.”
May 10, 1953: “Ask the Holy Father to pray the prayer … and to lead all the nations in praying it.” (To the pope:) “Apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ, teach your peoples this simple yet profound prayer. It is Mary, the Lady of All Nations, who asks this of you. You are the shepherd of the Church of the Lord Jesus Christ. Tend your sheep. Know well, great threats are hanging over the Church, are hanging over the world. Now the time has come for you to speak of Mary as Co-Redemptrix, Mediatrix, and Advocate, under the title, Lady of All Nations. Why is Mary asking this of you? Because she has been sent by her Lord and Creator so that under this title and through this prayer, she may deliver the world from a great world catastrophe. She is now asking that the people may hear this title from you, the Holy Father.”
December 3, 1953:
“The powers of hell will break loose. They will not, however, defeat the Lady of All Nations.”
May 31, 1955: Our Lady instructs Ida to repeat these words:
“A time of great inventions is to come. There will be alarming inventions, such that even your shepherds will be astonished and say, ‘We are at a loss.’ I just said: alarming inventions will be made. God allows this; but you peoples, you can see to it that it does not result in disaster. You peoples, I beg you … the Lady begs you; hear this well. Never has the Mother of God begged you … So that you do not arrive at alarming things, nations, the Lady begs you now, today; ask the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit to protect His people, to bring His people to unity once again. People have to attain unity, to be one, and over them, the Lady of All Nations. One community, peoples; here I am stressing these words: one community.”
She may have been referring to such alarming inventions as what scientists achieved in May of 2010. For the first time, scientists made a chain of DNA of some 1,000 genes from off-the-shelf laboratory chemicals and created the first creature which had no ancestor that could reproduce on its own, marking the age of artificial life.
“The Lady of All Nations is now permitted to come in order to banish Satan. She comes to announce the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit will only now descend over this earth. But you should say my prayer.”
(The Prayer:) “Lord Jesus Christ, Son of the Father, send now your Spirit over the Earth. Let the Holy Spirit live in the hearts of all nations. That they be preserved from degeneration, disaster, and war. May the Lady of All Nations, who once was Mary, be our Advocate.”
Ida states that Our Lady made it clear that She wanted this prayer and image spread together worldwide as a means of combatting evil and stopping wars. She also wanted Amsterdam to play a more central role and have a church built there in her honor. The city was not very grand at that time in 1945, but today it truly is more of an international city, hosting 177 different nationalities.
Ida was very conscientious about these messages, making sure to always transmit everything as faithfully as possible. But she, herself, just wanted to disappear, to remain unknown — to not play a role in the forefront. She often said, “It is not I; I am merely an instrument. These are simply Our Lady’s messages.”
Finally, on May 31, 1996, Ida was delighted in that Bishop Bomers and Bishop Punt of Haarlem authorized public devotion and approval of the messages. “Now I can die,” said Ida at age 90, and she was gone in less than two months.
(Mary had last said to her, “Adieu, see you in Heaven.”)
“Our Lady of Sorrows”
LA CODOSERA, CHANDAVILA, SPAIN (1945)
On May 27, 1945, ten-year old Marcelina Barroso Exposito and her cousin Augustina were walking to the village on an errand for her mother. The girls were walking through an area known as Chandavila when they noticed something strange in the distance. They were about to ignore it, but then a strange force somehow propelled them to the chestnut tree where they had seen something odd. Floating a little above the ground was the image of Our Lady of Sorrows. She was easily identified by the black robe and mantle that she wore. Stars embellished her gown and sparkled all about her. Her hands were joined, and her beautiful face bore every mark of deep pain and overwhelming sadness. Marcelina alone saw the Lady, and when the vision disappeared, she ran with her cousin to the village. Her message was actually greeted with great excitement.
Days later on the morning of June 4, 1945, Marcelina returned to the place of the apparition and beheld the Virgin once again. This time Blessed Mary spoke, telling her to return in the afternoon when she would then ask the girl to perform a sacrifice in the presence of all who attended. Word got around quickly as one thousand people of both Spanish and Portuguese nationalities eagerly attended. Marcelina went into an ecstasy on the way to the site as hundreds observed her in that surreal condition. At the sight of the chestnut tree she stopped and beheld the vision of the Virgin Mary at some distance. Our Lady invited the girl to crawl on her knees to her – a distance of about one hundred feet. The Virgin reassured her,
“Fear not. Nothing will harm you. I will be putting before you a reed mat and herbs so that you will not be hurt.”
Marcelina’s mother fainted upon seeing her daughter in an ecstatic state and starting to crawl on he knees over sharp rocks and rugged terrain. The child stopped and remained kneeling by the tree for about ten minutes. Marcelina saw the glorious image of a beautiful church with the Virgin Mary appearing on the altar. Blessed Mary invited the child to dip her fingers in holy water and bless herself. When the child crawled closer to the Virgin, Blessed Mary asked Marcelina if she would like to join her in heaven.
The child answered enthusiastically, “Yes, Ma’am, now!” Blessed Mary smiled and kissed Marcelina on the forehead. As she did so, the mantle of the Mother of God softly touched Marcelina’s face. The Virgin then requested that a chapel be built at this place of the apparitions. When the vision disappeared, Marcelina was no longer ecstatic and began talking normally with her friends.
But the pastor of Codosera, Father Juan Antonio Galan y Galan, began checking the girl for injuries. So did her friends as they all examined her knees and body – but could not find any scratches, bruises, or any type of injury. It was amazing to everyone!
With each encounter that Marcelina had with the Blessed Mother, more and more people attended. One of these pilgrims was a 17-year old girl, Afra Blanco Brigade, who had come with her friends on May 30, 1945. Upon her arrival, she thought she saw something dark in the clouds. The next day, she again went to the place of the apparitions and once again saw the dark object. This time it drew closer until it was clearly recognizable as Our Lady of Sorrows. This vision proved to be emotionally overwhelming for Afra who fell into a deep faint.
A few days later, Afra’s grandmother died. While dressed in mourning, Afra’s friends approached her and insisted that she join them for another visit to the apparition site. She agreed and actually knelt down next to visionary Marcelina. Blessed Mary revealed herself to both girls at the same time. The Virgin imparted a secret to Afra, predicted great suffering, and then asked Afra to kiss Marcelina. Our Lady asked for the recitation of the Rosary. She then asked again for a chapel to be constructed on this spot.
Days later, Afra and Marcelina went to Villar del Ray and stayed there from July 21 through July 24, giving thanks to the Virgin Mary for all the favors received. While making the Way of the Cross there, Afra became ecstatic at the eleventh station and saw the sufferings of Our Lord and his Crucifixion. Suddenly, she felt a sharp pain on the palms of both hands and discovered than an incision in the center of each was dripping blood and causing excruciating pain. Eventually, the stigmata were present on both feet and then were seen to penetrate deeper into the hands. The pain continued and the blood flowed mainly on Fridays in commemoration of Our Lord’s Crucifixion. Afra underwent numerous medical examinations, but treatments to heal the wounds were unsuccessful. It was noted that a sweet fragrance accompanied the stigmata.
Marcelina became a religious in the Congregation of the Sisters of the Cross in 1975 and took the name Sister Mary of Mercy of the Cross. This Order was dedicated to the care of the sick, orphans, the poor and elderly. She eventually joined a cloistered convent in Ciudad Real. Afra worked for many years in a hospital in Madrid until her death on August 23, 2008, at the age of eighty – after a long and painful illness.
A beautiful church, which enveloped the chestnut tree and apparition site, was eventually built. The Bishop of Badajoz gave permission for the construction of the church as well as approval for the apparitions and Expression of Faith.
“Teacher of Young People”
SIEKIERKI, POLAND (1943-1949)
There was no church in the Siekierki region during the Second World War, so everybody prayed under a large cross. On May 3, 1943, Wladyslawa Papis, age 12, was returning home from praying at the cross when she saw Our Lady appearing above a cherry tree. The girl remembered that she had forgotten her sick uncle in her prayers, so she continued to pray, and Mary watched her and waited. She begged Mary to take her uncle to heaven if he did not recover. Mary turned around three times toward the right and disappeared. It just so happened that this was the feast day for Our Holy Mother, Queen of Poland.
Jesus appeared for the first time on June 28, 1943 at the same cherry tree location and spoke of his great love for people.
On August 31, 1943, one year before the Warsaw Insurrection, the Holy Mother said,
“Pray — for a severe punishment will come, a heavy cross. I cannot hold back My Son’s anger if the nation does not convert. Kneel every day from 12:00 until 3:00 p.m., from August 6th and ask for forgiveness for all the sins of the world.”
On September 26, 1943, Jesus said, “Do not walk indifferently near churches. I am waiting for you in the Blessed Sacrament. I ease every suffering. I console every dejected heart, if the heart turns to me with the trust and confidence.”
On January 19, 1944, Jesus said, “I am waiting for you, hidden in the tabernacle. Kneel before the altar and pray.”
On September 8, 1949, Jesus said, “I am wounded by those who insult me. Make amends for them.”
On September 15, 1949, the Feast of Our Lady of Sorrows, the last apparition occurred. Jesus said, “I am with you, but I am leaving now. Pray to My Holy Mother. She listens to your prayers. She hears you.”
During the apparitions, the Holy Mother dictated the Litany and the Chaplet and a song. Both Our Lady and Jesus left many messages for believers. One time Mary appeared as the Teacher of Young People.
The first chapel at the place of the apparitions was built from 1945 through 1946. It was opened on May 3, 1946, the anniversary of the first apparition and the Feast of Our Holy Mother, the Queen of Poland.
Mary asked everyone to pray during the 24 hours of the first Friday of each month. Twenty-four people chose their hours and prayed at home in reparation for sins of the world. Night vigils would be kept on Saturdays before the 3rd Sunday, analogous to the 3rd of May first apparition.