The Apparitions of Ezquioga
As from the 30th of June 1931, and for three years, the Most Holy Virgin Mary appeared to several children on a mountainside in Ezquioga, also called Ezkio, near Zumárraga, Guipúzcoa, Spain. The first were Antonia Bereciartu, aged eleven and her brother Andrés, aged seven. Then others were added, until there were several dozen seers. The majority were country people, sympathetic, upright, humble and obliging in character, unassuming and without human respect, in a word, completely normal.
A multitude of faithful came; so that already on the 4th of July more than five hundred gathered in the open ground with several Priests to pray the Rosary; and on following days over forty thousand.
Soon, as is natural, certain people were alarmed at the avalanche of such multitudes. The irreligious and enemies of the supernatural, trying to counter such manifestations of religious faith, branded them as ridiculous and fraudulent, faked by opportunist individuals. The same did politicians of different tendencies, such as Basque nationalists and government republicans; all because they did not harmonize with their interests.
The lord Bishop was exiled in France for being opposed to the republican regime, and it is natural that the concentration of those multitudes tormented the republican government in Madrid, which began to place obstacles to the Apparitions and disparage and discredit them by every means at its disposal, and make the church authorities responsible for encouraging such manifestations, which apparently opposed the republicans, who persecuted Religion by the burning of churches and religious edifices, as had occurred a few months previously.
There had to be contact between the civil and the religious powers, and tolerance was to be paid for by some concessions by the diocese… Some time later, came the condemnation of the Apparitions by the Vitoria curia authorities. As usually happens, they were loaded with ridicule and anathema, and buried in the most Olympic ‘forgetfulness’. The information and communications media (newspapers, magazines, bulletins) took steps to misinform, as frequently happens, speaking of fraud and faking, and naturally concealing things they wanted to conceal.
The head of the Spanish government, freemason Manuel Azaña, deep-rooted in communist ideology, believed that Ezquioga could become another Covadonga, or 2nd of May, that is, a Catholic resurgence; for surely the Ezquioga Apparitions speak eloquently of the needs of the Christian soul, of the existence of supernatural life, and of communications from Heaven to earth, denied and mocked by the regime in power. What would be said if Spanish republicans had allowed the holy Apparitions to be defended? Hence Azaña coined the phrase: ‘Put an end to everything to do with Ezquioga,’ a phrase which his stooges repeated and put into practice, namely those who wanted to benefit from the republican regime. Hence those who at all costs wanted to finish off the Apparitions of God’s Mother were those enemies of God, which is the explanation of the persecution against such supernatural events. Likewise, the Apparitions of El Palmar de Troya were combated by freemasonry, as they were a defence of Holy Tradition and unmasked the demolition by progressivist enemies infiltrated into the Church.
It was Azaña who, backing up the plans of freemason enemies of the Ezquioga Apparitions, ordered them to cease. He authorized the exiled prelate Múgica to return to his diocese, we know not under what conditions, but the fact is that from 1933, when he retook possession of his Vitoria palace, don Múgica did not cease to take rigorous emergency measures against Ezquioga.
Those who make use of troubled waters, the enemies of the supernatural and its political implications, caused certain events, with many factors in favour of being supernatural, to fall into discredit and ridicule. It mattered not that several upright persons were to suffer from such measures, and be treated unjustly, or that innocent children be submitted to incredible and shameful pressures which trampled on the most elementary rights of the person. No commissions were set up, nothing was brought to light, no official action by authority, as Canon Law requires to find out truth or fraud; in a word, they sought to bury the truth; though later it was to rise again with the years.
At the start of the Apparitions, the Madrid government ordered the most prestigious physician in Spain, Dr. Gregorio Marañón, to study the Ezquioga events. He, having observed them closely, stated: “I have studied the events here dispassionately, and can affirm that we doctors have no part to play here, as the phenomena appearing in the seers do not pertain to pathological science. They pertain to other studies, outside my competence. Let those competent come and see if they understand them.” Many other doctors also expressed that “science finds no satisfactory explanation for these phenomena, for the ecstasies were supernatural and science cannot explain them, being beyond the science of nature.”
Other interesting testimonies were that of Cardinal Frederic Tedeschini, then Apostolic Nuncio in Spain, who in 1932 said: “According to the information I have on events in Ezquioga, it is from Heaven;” and the martyr Saint Manuel Irurita Almandoz, Bishop of Barcelona, said: “Without sinning by rashness, one cannot deny that there is something supernatural in the Ezquioga business;” and added that he “believed in Ezquioga, that he would work privately for it, and that if he were Bishop of Vitoria he would work openly;” an illustrious Guipuzcoan Priest said: “It cannot be denied that we are living through moments of sublime grandeur, in which it is hard to know what to admire most, whether God’s amorous predilection closer than ever to poor mortals (in the holy Ezquioga Apparitions) or the incomprehensible blindness of men pledged to shut their eyes to so much light.”
The number of seers was frankly surprising and unparalleled. Some twenty-five of both sexes were considered to have positive proofs of authenticity. At the end of the persecutions and defections, the greater part lost heart for lack of spiritual direction and abuse of graces, and only four or five authentic ones were left, together with several doubtful. Among the principal ones can be counted: the children Andrés and Antonia Bereciartu, aged 9 and 12 respectively, who were the first seers; Benita Aguirre de Legazpia, aged nine at the beginning, the one who received the greatest graces of revelation on the future, highly persecuted by the prelates to the point of threats of excommunication and privation of the Sacraments if she did not recant and deny the Apparitions; Brother Cruz Lete de Ibasondo, aged twenty, who died in holiness in 1933, in the Brothers of Saint John of God. This Brother had visions and revelations, and they asked of him, “in the bloom of youth, who made him exchange such an enjoyable life for an existence consecrated to God’s service?”, to get the answer that “it was the Most Holy Virgin when She appeared to that life on the Ezquioga mountain.”
All these seers experienced extraordinary graces, visions, ecstasies, visible wounds, cures, and so forth, with some prophecies already fulfilled, and many others on the way. Two of the most notable of these had the Vicar General Dr. Echeguren as protagonist, one of the greatest opponents and therefore responsible for the failure of the first manifestations, unheeded and without spiritual fruit. Well, then, two of the seers announced his prompt and violent death, and let him know. In effect he died in a car accident, as Bishop of Oviedo. It was prophesied that the Bishop of Vitoria “would die exiled from his Episcopal see and completely alone.” This bishop Matthew Múgica was forced to renounce his bishopric and died blind. It was he who published the most widely distributed attack on Ezquioga, and decided, without formal study, without sufficient proofs and without hearing the seers, to attribute all to the devil or other cause not supernatural. The persecution of Ezquioga began with the political element, followed by the governmental element, continued with the religious and ended up with all of them together. Bishop Matthew Múgica was one of the only two bishops who opposed Saint Francisco Franco when the Spanish Civil War was entitled “Holy Crusade of National Liberation” by the rest of the Bishops, and he wrote to Pope Saint Pius XI urging him to condemn the Franco regime.
Pope Saint Gregory XVII, as you can read in his Forty-fourth Document, approved the Apparitions of Ezquioga, and especially the beautiful Messages which speak of the Holy Crossbearers, of the Great Pontiff and of the Great Monarch, “because of their intimate relation to the Carmelites of the Holy Face, or Holy Crossbearers of Palmar. We firmly believe that the blessed Apparitions of Ezquioga are the antechamber of the blessed Apparitions of Our Crowned Mother of Palmar… The Most Holy Virgin Mary, in those apparitions of Ezquioga, generally appeared under the title of Our Lady of Dolours; though on some occasions She appeared as well under other titles.”
We can only present some representative extracts from the Ezquioga events. We centre exclusively on one of the seers, the girl Benita Aguirre, then eleven years of age. Her messages speak of three years of famine, the emergence of Antichrist’s reign, persecutions of Christians, world war, plague, hurricanes, three days of darkness. The Ezquioga seers became famous for stating that the Virgin had told them that in a few years there would be a civil war in Spain (1936-1939) and that the national side would win the war. But her prophetic messages go further.
In Benita Aguirre’s messages are mentioned the end of times, a bloody revolution in Europe to begin in Italy and spread to other countries like Spain; the fall of the brief tyrannical government in Spain; the emergence of a sinister personage of which many prophets speak and whom all identify as the Antichrist; the persecution of Christians who find themselves forced to flee to the deserts to safeguard their Faith, undergoing a true martyrdom; the appearance of another personage whom many identify as “the Great Monarch”; and a new and unique religious Order, and the apparition of an Order denominated “the Crossbearers”, which will destroy the muslim sect (islam) and put an end to other sects, heretics and tyrants.
Messages of the Ezquioga seeress Benita Aguirre: “After the chastisements have passed, there will be one single Religious Order called the Crossbearers… Know that a King (the Great Monarch) will reign with justice, and his magistrates will rule with rectitude.” It is remarkable that Benita Aguirre should have received messages very similar to those of other Catholic seers. It is an evidence which should lead more than one to reflect. The Most Holy Virgin, in 1932, told her: “Do much prayer, penance and many sacrifices. If you do not, terrible chastisements will come and a third part of mankind will perish. Few families will then be unscathed. All will have to wear mourning. The end of the world is close. When women do not differ from men in their dress, then think that the end of the world is coming. The years fly past and few bother to think of death.”
Declarations of Benita Aguirre:
“She told me that the communists would soon enter Spain, that they had begun to do evil. There are many who, blind, do not realize that the chastisement will come over and above communism; and that a fountain of graces flows day and night from Jesus’ Sacred Heart poured out over those with Him, but that we should try to respond to them, for He will reward us.”
“She affirmed that soon the churches would close, that the first to close would be those of Catalonia, where the greatest atrocities would be committed against Religion; though Catalonia possesses three treasures in three souls, who love her dearly, and are three who have offered themselves to Jesus as victims; and for the sake of these three souls, Catalonia would be chastised less than she deserves. She ended by telling me that in our hearts we should set up the arms with which we must defend Religion.” In this is seen how the prayers of three souls who love God dearly can free a whole people from chastisement.
“She told me that we who belong to Jesus should pray hard to save many of those in danger of damnation, and that our supplications, especially now, will be heeded, and that when the famine comes, almost all (true) Catholics will be found outside Spain, given that Jesus wants to save us from the greater part of the chastisements, thanks to the prayers said on the Mount of the Apparitions and which have been heard.”
“Afterwards the Child Jesus appeared, and told me to bring pencil and paper and write down the following message: ‘Your Jesus calls you. Run to Him. I want to tell you all, My children, that you live in very bad times, and have to draw up an account of what you must present to Me. Do you say you are Mine, with the devil reigning in your hearts?… No, dear children, I cannot consent to that… Soon those cinemas and theatres you daily attend will be buried… And you, My apostles, instead of giving example, why do the opposite? That cannot be, dear children. Did I teach you that, or would you rather act differently from what I taught you? Many of you are blind and want to drowse on in worldly pleasures…; many are no true apostles of Mine, and none of those asleep in worldly pleasures are pleasing to My Heavenly Father. One day I will ask you to account for all this.”
“Later the Virgin Mary added the following: ‘Your Mother, who loves you dearly, calls you, children of My soul. I want to tell you all, as obedient sheep, to listen to the whistle of the Good Shepherd; but do not separate from Him, for if you wander away from Him, if you stray, He will not go in search of you. If you go in search of Him, He will take you up lovingly.’”
Extracts of the messages of Benita Aguirre from July and August 1933:
“She affirmed that… when we Catholics have to fly Spain in search of the desert, we shall meet up with a great man who, as soon as the chastisements are over, and before the rest, will return to Spain; and will begin to labour here with the few who have stayed, converting many.”
“She added that people realize that we are going through bad times, and yet continue living the same way with their wretched sins; and that things will not be sorted out until Jesus places a great man on the throne, a king and marshal over the whole world. Then will He reign over the world. This king will have another to help him, who will go throughout the world converting the people, and those who refuse to submit to the Catholic Church will receive many chastisements, and many will lose their lives.”
“I repeat that, after Jesus’ reign in Spain, a tremendous persecution will arise; and after this persecution, the end of the world. But not all will die, rather God, following Judgement, will leave many righteous in the world to glorify Him, living on earth a thousand years, during which peace will reign.”
“She added that, after the reign of Jesus’ Heart, Antichrist will come, who will upset the peace, and with him the evil will take on new strength; to whom light will not be given; but the good will be given light to know Antichrist, and that those who then want to serve God will have to separate from their families, friends and fellows, and flee to the deserts.”
“She affirmed that God is preparing a Great Monarch, who will have to reign amid humiliations and sacrifices; that the Great Monarch was bad in his youth, but now does much good and will dominate the entire world, which will be forced to obey and adore the True God.”
“She affirmed that the Great Monarch will have another very good companion, who will help him to spread Religion… that when we are in the desert, we shall know the great Monarch… and while he is on the throne, Jesus will reign.”
“She taught me that only while Jesus reigns will the good have peace, despite the wicked having to suffer greatly; that after this Reign, the wicked will again recover strength; and it is then that the Antichrist will come to disturb the peace of the good; that we will have to flee to the deserts, we who wish to serve God, for men will not understand each other; and that after this persecution Judgement will come very soon.”
“She repeated to me that many troubles would come, for in these times evil makes great progress; that soon those who do not truly love Jesus will be confounded; since a very great persecution against Catholics will come quite soon, and those who do not truly love Him will deny Him, to be freed from the chastisements inflicted on those who do not deny Him; that many of those taken to be spiritual men, when the time comes to give their life for Christ, will deny Him, for the devil works hard on them; and because of the chastisements God will send us, many will turn against Him.”
“She again told me that the wicked are preparing for war, but that God will help the good, many of whom will have to give their lives for Him, and He will reward them; that this would be a world war and they will be unable to do as they please, since God is over and above everything.”
“She told me that infinite waves of tenderness are enfolded in Jesus and that He wants to pour them out; but finds few hearts ready to receive them, being sunk in selfishness, enclosed in pride, withdrawn into themselves and lacking faith in His love; and Jesus will therefore discharge His justice upon men, for there are very few hearts that truly love Him.”
“She added that Jesus is tired of waiting, that our love for Jesus has to be one of gratitude, union, conformity, intimacy and preference, untiring in loving Him ever more, for He loves us most truly. This love will transform us into His goodness and make us live by His life, radiating merciful charity; for Jesus does not grant His grace wherever He pleases, rather where He sees Himself truly loved; and that we be recollected in His divine presence, gazing upon Him and humbly beseeching Him.”
She spoke of the Crossbearers, the Great Monarch, the Antichrist, and gave counsels:
On the 6th of August 1933, “She affirmed that once the chastisements are over, there will be one single Religious Order called the Crossbearers, which will save the entire world, preaching the true Faith and winning souls to embrace it. The leader of the Crossbearers will be a very holy man, who after his apostolate will die crucified at the Bethlehem gate. In the last times the whole world will speak the same language.”
“She charged that we be humble. We lose nothing by practising acts of humility and obedience; on the contrary, we gain all, since we win His Heart, and thus bring forward His hour. Some wonder that I always choose the poorest, the most deprived of human means to raise up my Work, but this is normal, so that no one be deceived, attributing to himself things that are a divine gift.”
“The Child Jesus appeared to me and told me: ‘I would like to raise up a great Christian crusade, well understood and well lived. I want to make you live by My Gospel and draw you to My love. If you do no more it is because you do not love Me enough nor do you become transformed in My goodness; but if you do not love Me as you ought and can, it is because you do not truly know Me. To want to understand Me is quite simple: I do nothing new other than repeat what you already know, what you should do, what I have declared in My Gospel, what My Church teaches you. I do not want anything other than to make you true children of My Heavenly Father’. He added: ‘I am infinitely good, wise and omnipotent. I love you, being your Saviour, your Lord, your God. I have created you for My glory, and from all eternity have loved you with incomparable charity, and have therefore drawn you by mercy. You can never have too much confidence in your God so good and merciful, because true confidence is grounded on truth, and this eternal truth is that I am infinitely good. If you live by My Gospel, My teachings will bear fruit in you, and you will understand that if you have been favoured more than many others, having been drawn by My love, you should make greater efforts as well to give Me a return and make up for those who do not recognize God’s gift.’”
“Our Lady said that ‘the signs of the chastisements are now beginning’ and that ‘we are almost in them already.’ Jesus then added: ‘What pains My Heart most is that children keep away from Me; and I want you to lead little ones to Me, for innocence pleases Me greatly, chiefly the sick. They are the ones who have greater need of knowing Me in My Goodness. I want to help them, console them as I did in My life on earth. It is proper to My Heart to do good, console the sufferer, sweeten bitter gall and show Myself generous towards those who love Me by way of suffering. There is no consolation to compare with sustaining a soul and encouraging it to suffer as a Christian with faith and love. Help me, you, to reach those I love so dearly, and leave them with words which will give them good heart in their sufferings as fruit of My passing.”
“Our Lord told me: ‘Do much prayer. The prayers of My Church are beautiful and profound; but often you say them in a superficial way. By means of My Church and her prayers, I enlighten and preach to you. I have prepared the bread of My children, which does not prevent each from taking what suits him according to his need. I have a great Heart, a good Heart. I want to speak to your souls and make you understand how sweet and good I am in My mercy. If you are a sinner, It awaits you, It forgives you, It offers Itself for you, and says to the Eternal Father: Forgive him because he did not know You, he didn’t know how good You are. And you, beloved of Mine, children of My tenderness: See how charity keeps me a prisoner on the Altar. There I offer Myself for you. For you I renew the offering of Calvary, with all the love of the Father… Open your breast to these waves of infinite tenderness, in which I want you to immerse your souls. Be good, be holy, as I am good and holy’.”
“Jesus told me: My love towards My little creatures is a love full of tenderness. Do you not see Me turning with preference to the littlest? Thus, Mary sang a love tender and strong, and the stronger the tenderer. That is the love I want to communicate to you. The stronger your love for Me and for souls, so much the more tender and true shall it be, without fear of weakness… Love is strong as death, and its very tenderness spurs us on to every sacrifice and to heroism.’”
“Jesus told me: ‘With the soul open to receive these waves of tenderness, which are the light of My goodness, of My merciful charity, are you not moved to see yourselves the object of such love, the scenario of so many benefits, despite your misery? This contact with My infinite tenderness, which you do not deserve either, for in the end you may be unfaithful to Me, is what will produce in you perfect contrition. This dolour purifies your soul and will purify you to be more vigilant, to pray with greater eagerness and trust yourselves to Mary, so that She help you not to fall again. Whoever receives in his soul the waves of My love, of My infinite tenderness, will he be able to do anything less than all that depends on him so as not to displease Me, to refuse Me nothing? Will he not feel overflowing with tenderness as well towards his neighbour? He will not then love his neighbour out of natural sentiments, but by the impulse of the Holy Ghost, essential love communicated to him, love full of the tenderness by which this soul feels beloved.’”
“The Divine Mother insisted that She wants ‘prayer, much prayer, for it is prayer that has to save the world.’ Jesus continued: ‘I want to give you the secret of loving Me, which is none other than studying to know Me in My goodness, making many acts of faith in this goodness, in My love, in My mercy towards the humble, the charitable, the obedient, the little ones. Pray, implore and give yourselves up by Mary to My merciful love. With your souls opened up, give Me hearts emptied by humility, made great by charity, prepared by obedience, for the fruits of self-will do not please Me, which are not My fruits, those of My Will.’”
“The Virgin began telling me: ‘You all sleep on, and Jesus tires of waiting’. Jesus continued: ‘Do not be selfish; think of those poor souls who do not know Me, and those who present Me as a rigid and severe Lord, who love Me not, who serve Me not, but as though forced, and even so do not yield, but flee and fear to give themselves up to Me. Look at your Mother. In Heaven She is not inactive, rather watches over you without cease, acting as Mediatrix for poor sinners. She wants you to help Her. Make your sacrifices and acts of obedience pass through Mary. By Mary consecrate yourselves to Me, ever more as little servants of Christ the King. Pray much, pray by intercession of Mary so that the Lord of the harvest send out labourers. Pray so that all straying sheep find the fold of the Church.’”
“The Mother showed me: ‘The chastisements will come very soon; tell the people so that they prepare, though it will be to no avail for the majority.’ Jesus continued: ‘You, my children, those who believe in the Apparitions of your Mother, have to give example, have to excel in obedience and humility, for I have very great designs upon you. The wicked try to throw Me out everywhere and do without Me; you, who are Mine, always put Me first. They also want false liberty to dominate everyone and subject them to greater slavery; but you, who are Mine, be subject to Christ and you will be free of slavery to vices and passions; and I assure you that you will have the valour of your opinions. I want to give you the cross, for I do not want you without cross; show by your conduct that My yoke is easy and My burden light. Serve Me with passion, joy, holiness and love.’”
“Jesus told me: ‘I want you to be little servants of Christ the King. ‘Little servants’ is a profound title full of meaning. Understand self-denial to be doing nothing other than My Divine Will. Happy the one who heard the Word of God and put it into practice. I promise you that I will pour out My blessings where the image of My Heart is exposed and honoured. The closer you approach the state of innocence by the purity of your life and union with Me, the more will you partake of true life, which is all charity.’”
“Our Lady declared to me: ‘Chastisements have begun abroad and in Spain as well, though no one realizes. Be prepared, for soon the famine will come.’ Jesus continued: ‘I want many hearts to be emptied by humility and expanded by charity. I want hearts which beat for Me alone, which bear My cross. And those hearts, do you know why I want them? However much you say, you will never guess. I want them in order to keep My treasures in them; I want to deposit My gems in them. And do you know what these gems are? Well, they are all those graces I want to pour out upon earth, and find so few hearts ready to accept Me, so I make use of these to deposit them.’”
In the following visions, until it states the contrary, the Virgin speaks to her first, with personal comments, for Jesus then to continue and give His blessing at the end. It says as follows: “Italy, watered by the blood of so many martyrs, is slave to a diabolical demagogy, which has succeeded in setting itself up as arbiter of power; and poor Spain, which has been conquered inch by inch by the Cross, has become an envassalled people, rushing towards the precipice and striving to break with her traditions, her history and her own way of life. O holy Crossbearers! you will destroy the cursed muslim sect; you will put an end to all kinds of heretics and sects in the world, and you will be the end of all tyrants; you will impose silence and perpetual peace throughout the whole world; you will make saints of all men by force or willingly. O holy people, O blessed people of the Most Holy Trinity. The head and founder will be the great captain of holy people, called the Holy Crossbearers of Jesus Christ.. They will win dominion, both temporal and spiritual, over the whole world. These servants of God will cleanse the world by the death of an infinite number of rebels. The Head and Founder of this militia will be the great Reformer of God’s Church.”
The Most Holy Virgin added: “The world’s perversity is so enormous that I cannot detain the arm of My outraged Son, above all because of blasphemy, profanation of holydays, impurity, abandonment or neglect of prayer and forgetfulness of God. For so many crimes, to help Me hold back My Son’s arm, those who are Mine will have to suffer considerably.” Afterwards Jesus continued: “Oh! Ingrates! You offend Me without cease and I obtain forgiveness for you from My Father. But the time has now come to grant you no mercy. I give everyone light, mercifully sufficient, so that they be aware of the great eternity, but penance daunts them. Aye, aye!… for those who do no penance.”
“Jesus told me: ‘There will be precursory signs of the war, religious tepidity and moral corruption, vice deemed as virtue and virtue as vice, believers deemed as lunatics and unbelievers as enlightened. Upheavals in the Church have not come to an end; a tremendous one will occur, though not lasting very long, after which things will settle down. A time will come in which Faith in Me will decline to such a degree that few will possess it. So great will be the persecution of the righteous by the wicked, that the righteous will have to undergo real martyrdom. Things will reach their peak, but when man’s hand can do no more and all seems lost, I will raise My hand and put things right.’”
“Know that a King (the Great Monarch), will reign with justice, and his magistrates will rule uprightly. And this man will be like a place of refuge to shelter from the wind and a haven in the storm. And he will be like a stream of fresh water in time of drought, and like the shadow of a high crag amid wasteland.”
“Men have refused to receive a good and merciful God, and will see how He discharges upon them the wrath of a God justly incensed; they will see that God is not insulted in vain, and will acknowledge, though too late, that I am the Almighty. Before peace comes to Spain, eagerness for money will lead men to deny the Faith, and many of the Church’s ministers, drawn by carnal appetites and the beauty and lewdness of women, will abandon celibacy, and in all parts the devil will roam freely among them.”
“The Crossbearers, most faithful chosen ones of the Most High, unable to overcome heretics by the scriptures, will move impetuously against them with arms. The time is now coming when I will visit the world with the new Order of the Crossbearers, with the Crucifix raised up on the highest standard and in the best place. Admirable standard in the eyes of all the just, which at the beginning will be scorned by unbelievers, bad Christians and pagans; however, after they see the wonderful victories against tyrants, heretics and infidels, their scorn will turn into tears. O holy Crossbearers, chosen by the Most High, how pleasing you are to God! The Founder will reform the Church of God with his followers, who will be the best men in the world in holiness, in arms, in letters and in all the other virtues, for such is the Will of the Most High.”
“The Virgin spoke to me: ‘My Son’s arm is so heavy that I cannot hold it back alone any more. I want you to offer up all the good works you do to hold back My outraged Son’s arm.’ Next Jesus continued: ‘Ah, Spain, Spain, blind nation, listen to the voice of the Lord who appoints you to be the object of His supreme Justice; do you not see in the depths of that tenebrous atmosphere an iris of peace, a halo of joy enveloped? Remove your wilful blindness; see that one day, a day not far off, One will come to judge you. Alas for you, wicked ruler… Prepare, prepare, terrifying times are on the way. Oh, how ungrateful men are! How miserable their response!… Soon the reddish waves will bear you away with fearful bellows to the impious wave which reposes in Spain, and My thankless apostles are seated upon it…’”
“Jesus said: ‘The earth is full of crimes, and the flouting of the first three Commandments of My Law has angered My Father; and blasphemy against My Most Holy Name, and profanation of Sunday have filled up the measure of iniquity. These sins have risen up to My Father’s throne, provoking His wrath, which will be poured out if His justice is not placated. At no time have crimes ever risen so high…’”
“The first to belong to the Order of Crossbearers will be from the city of Seville, in which wickedness, vice and sin are all-abounding. Those of this city will turn from evil to good, from rebels against God into His most faithful and fervent servants. It will be a city beloved of My Sacred Heart and of the Great Monarch. Listen! O peoples who dwell in Spain… a time will come in which you will enjoy the true liberty of olden times, for the false liberty, which the impious are using, will be destroyed! The tyrannical government will be annihilated, despite its terrible efforts, and the true religion will flourish throughout Spain.”
“I came down to Ezquioga because there are a few good souls. I come to convert the bad, conserve the good and warn that many chastisements are on the way, so that everyone prepare and be on the alert, but I achieve little of this.”
“Our Lady began by telling me to pray for sinners; to have great devotion to the souls of Purgatory and that we pray much to Sacramented Jesus.”
“During the chastisement there will be five days of communism, and on three days fire will fall and dawn will not break. Let no one leave home during these three days, for men, confused, will begin to kill each other.”
“There will be earthquakes, first abroad and then in Spain… Fire will destroy the harvest… In the first year there will be famine and many will be damned. In the fourth year harvests will begin, then things will improve. The littlest children will die in their mother’s arms. The act of repentance the wicked make on dying, will be useless to them because it will not be contrition but fear of chastisement. The day will come on which, stepping out, we will find a corpse, and at another step, another corpse, so that they will open a path through the corpses as they do when there is snow. Paris will be burnt to a cinder, Marseille will be swallowed up by the sea, Catalonia has a great burden weighing upon it; Madrid, Barcelona, San Sebastián and Málaga are those which have the greatest burdens… there will be an infectious disease from which many will die… during the chastisement men will be very wicked and forgetful of God. Afterwards Christ will reign. There will be three great chastisements and besides three great miracles. Happy whoever dies in the first chastisement.”
“Our Lady told me that the chastisements are upon us, for Jesus cannot wait any longer; that we pray much for sinners, whose eyes are closed; that San Sebastián will be swallowed up by the sea; that we do much prayer and penance, that we be valiant, since we who are Mary’s will be fiercely persecuted.”
“Soon the earth will be cruelly scourged. This scourge will be felt all over the world, and will be so terrible that each survivor will imagine himself to be the only one free of the chastisement. This chastisement will be very short, but terrible.”
“This impious republic which reposes in Spain, whose apparition has been a sign of the coming chastisements, will soon be completely ruined; but yet worse times will come. The communists will seize power in Spain and will take the good ones out of her, and while the good are away, will cruelly chastise the whole of Spain without any fear at all. The good will have to flee into the deserts, but I tell you that you will not suffer hunger, for I will feed you. Afterwards, in the desert where you are, houses will be built and the desert settled. There in the desert you will meet him who is later to reign (namely, the Great Monarch). After three and a half years in the desert, you can come back to Spain, since the chastisements for the time being will be over. And it is in this time that the Reign of the Sacred Heart of Jesus will come, but this reign will be interior.
After I reign interiorly, Antichrist will come. In this time there will be some terrible chastisements, and there will be great persecution of the good, the majority being martyred. There will be far more martyrs than there have ever been, and Heaven will fill with palms.
Afterwards will come the Day of Judgement, and the righteous will live another thousand years… In this time sin will not be possible, so that it will be a kind of Paradise on earth.”
“Daughter, I want you to open people’s eyes and tell them: that I have not come down to Ezquioga to perform miracles, but to warn them of coming chastisements, so that they prepare, for the Heavenly Father, justly angered, will soon unleash His Divine Wrath upon men. Oh! What a terrible day, that of the chastisements! Daughter! I have come down because I love you, and no one pays heed to Me, but you who are mine, do not fear, I will help you, though you will have much to suffer! My precious pearls, who are the Crossbearers, wear the cross on the breast. On those crosses am I. This Religious Order will be the only one existing then in the world! How I would like you to be among them! But those who keep their eyes closed will never see. They have seen nothing. What shall I do for My children? More cannot be done!
For them to open their eyes it is necessary to wound. My Son still awaits, but the Father’s chalice is full to the brim. He will soon be ready to strike. Lightning will fall upon the earth and entire cities must disappear. And after this happens, do you think they are going to believe? They will think it is something earthly. O Spain! You who have always been the cradle of the Heart that loves you! Why do you let yourselves be overcome?…
Much war, much war. The Pyrenees have known nothing equal. The catastrophe was promised to begin abroad, to warn the Spanish. In this era the priests will be the worst. The Government has told them they would take their churches from them, and this will be to make them rebel, being a chastisement for their inability to fulfil their ministry. There are many who want to wear civil dress, since rather than fulfil their own duties, they turn to politics, clubs and meetings.”
In Ezquioga occurred the same as in La Salette, whose first Apparition was on the 19th of September 1846. The bishop of Grenoble imposed canonical penalties on anyone preaching or publishing the mysterious event; penalties which he had to lift five years later, after Pope Saint Pius IX had examined Maximin’s and Melanie’s secrets, sent them his Blessing and declared that the book dealing with the Apparition of La Salette breathed the truth. In Ezquioga occurred the same as in Lourdes; the cruel and prolonged opposition to these Apparitions was as great as the very faith and devotion which resulted in France from the event. The Church authorities remained indifferent until six months after the event, when they believed they should get to work on the affair. At the beginning, Bernadette was taken to be hallucinated, later to be beatified, and long years passed until the event was consecrated.
There were those who said: “It is not yet time” to make the truth known and to make virtue shine and to exercise justice and manifest the glory of God and of His Mother, and to draw Heaven’s mercy down upon men. If it is not yet time for all these things, perhaps it may be the time to sink into inertia; to expose holy things to mockery, to disdain, the time for offence, for calumny and for perdition, for putting back the hour of divine mercy upon the nation and upon the world, and so lose the chance which Heaven offers to restore what is fallen, which is almost everything. Is it not yet time? But when will it be time? When the devil and the perverse with him have reaped enough? When the good are wearied or are dancing to the tune of the others? When everything has disappeared…? It may be that this will be the hour for many. But what a tremendous responsibility!
In Ezquioga, the Most Holy Virgin Mary appeared on different occasions with swords in hand. To some it seemed to clash with the goodness, mercy, sweetness and other pacific qualities of Our Lady: ‘Mother of Mercy, our life, sweetness and hope’. But in History there has been no epoch, except that before the Flood, of greater unbelief, rational disorder and sensual vice than the present: vice, disorder and unbelief which wholly penetrate, with very few exceptions, all social classes and categories. The Most Holy Virgin in Her Apparitions and revelations does not express Herself otherwise. She has come to remedy the evil, but no one wants to listen. What is more logical, then, that upon Mankind, wallowing in the mire and hardened in evil, fall terrible, exemplary and unheard-of chastisements, something similar to those of the Flood, yet very different to them for being worse still? What is more natural than that this mankind be chastised and be corrected, so that those who survive be more upright and follow the way God has laid down? And what more exact symbolism of such exceptional chastisements than the sword or swords with which the Virgin Mary appeared at the beginning?
Words of Our Lady giving the reasons for Her Apparitions: “If I have come to earth it is because Satan has taken over the world and wants to put an end to Catholics.” “The reason for My apparitions in Ezquioga lies in the desertion of My Son’s ministers, who do not attend as they should to their churches. That is why I seek other dear souls, so that they labour to do what My ministers forget.” “Jesus Christ, My Son, is very offended by the outrages He receives from the world, and wants to send a chastisement. However, as I am the Mother of all, I have come to announce to My children that they amend, since, if not, they will receive the chastisement of the Father.” In a word: forgetfulness in doing our little duties, turning our backs on them, and Heaven’s supreme longing to save wayward mankind, is the triple cause of the Most Holy Virgin’s Apparitions in Ezquioga and, as in La Salette, as in Fatima, She complains bitterly of all Her children, particularly of many of Her priests who, besides not following the path to their own and others’ sanctification, are a hindrance to the salvation of many.
The world’s response to so many Apparitions and miracles by the Most Holy Virgin Mary has commonly been fruitless inertia, sorry denial, and black unbelief. But why not take interest in the affair and investigate it in depth? Why turn our backs, saying “there is no obligation to believe, as it is not dogma of Faith”, so that a public ignorant of these matters ends up by saying as they do, ‘nothing doing here’? A grave sin, and very grave, which, on the one hand, by leaving an important matter so much to the mercy of worldly currents, could end up by destroying it on the rocks of oblivion, while on the other hand, it impedes the glory of God and of His Mother, and the sanctification and salvation of souls, supreme double aim of mankind, preventing it from giving the fruit required in the Divine Plan.
Events which have been proved even by miracles, and should reflect such honour and glory upon God and the Virgin, and utility to the Catholic people, should be studied and examined, yet the world leaves them in sad neglect and unleashes a shameless persecution full of calumnies, outrages and infamies against all those who sympathize with the Apparitions.
We ask: Are there grave social and other causes which make apparitions seem reasonable and natural? Yes. First the gravity of the present universal moment. Silenced, though well known and felt, the present universal moment provokes the bitter general complaint: “Things are going to rot. We are in the crater of a volcano. When we least think, a cataclysm will strike. Let it come now, now.” And the whole world lives in continuous anguish and in perpetual torment, awaiting the tragic hour for the chastisement of man’s corruption. But the most surprising of it all is that men, in the face of such enormous evils, live with their backs to their Creator, shut the doors on Him and even blaspheme and persecute Him. That is how the apostasy of Rome came about, when the Catholics of the time, and even the best of them, were unconcerned, because they had abandoned God’s ways, speaking, acting and living as Christians in appearance, but not in truth. In the immense majority of them, the spirit of the Gospel had evaporated, leaving just the sacred letter; but the spirit, where had it gone?
Our epoch is very similar to that in which Jesus Christ lived on earth. He describes it plainly in the Gospel, above all when He throws in the faces of those scribes and pharisees their irregular way of acting: that they trampled on God’s Commandment regarding the duty of charity in order to follow a tradition; that they honoured God with their lips but their hearts were far from Him; that they taught doctrines and commandments of men, which they themselves did not perform, that they imposed heavy and unbearable duties on others, when they themselves did not move a finger to fulfil them; that they practised good works to be seen by men, and loved the first seats, and liked to be greeted in the plaza as teachers and doctors, that they went about begging praise from each other, but did not seek the glory which comes from God alone, and so forth.
Precisely it is for this last motive that the scribes and pharisees did not receive or believe in Jesus Christ; and it is surely vanity, which provokes flattery, and pride, which engenders presumption, which separate us from Jesus Christ and His Most Holy Mother. Ah! And how our Divine Teachers point all this out in the different Messages sent to earth by means of seers.
But there is more. Pope Saint Pius XI, in one of his judicious encyclicals, in 1932, warned that the difficult moments through which mankind was already passing then, were only comparable to the times in which Noah, by divine order, preached penance to a refractory world, and fabricated the ark of salvation for a few righteous. And even more; Jesus and the Most Holy Virgin announce the present times as the worst since the world began. We are therefore on the eve of an inevitable catastrophe, which only universal penance can allay.
In the Last Times our Most Holy Mother must be better known, loved and glorified than She has been up till now. The Most Holy Virgin remained humble and hidden all Her life as a pilgrim on earth; and, precisely because of that humility and retirement, the Divine Lady has not been loved and glorified as She ought to be; throughout the History of the Church, She has not received all the glory and honour due to Her because She has not been sufficiently known, until Her glories were published in the Palmarian Holy Councils. That is why some Saints prophesied that, when the general apostasies come, the Virgin will begin to be better known and loved, as that is Almighty God’s Will. He wants His Mother to be glorified and honoured as She deserves, and better known and loved than ever. By preaching penance, and opening up to us the ways of salvation, is how the Most Holy Virgin has given us to feel Her august presence among us. And for this, the Blessed Mother appeared extraordinarily in La Salette, Lourdes, Knock, Fatima, Ezquioga and El Palmar de Troya.
Spain has always been Mary’s predilect nation, and the Catholic nation par excellence, but it is also evident that Spain today is the patrimony of Catholicism’s enemies, who have been able to rise to power, precisely owing to the defection and submission of many who were good. And Mary, who of yore visited us and raised up a throne in Zaragoza, has immense compassion for Her people, and laments sorrowfully in Ezquioga, in Garabandal and finally in Palmar, to rouse up Her deeply sleeping children, to raise them up from the filthy mire in which they are deeply immersed, clamouring through the seers for us to practise insistent prayer, hard penance, acceptable sacrifice, and that we render ourselves wholly up to God: which She requested in La Salette, in Lourdes, in Fatima, and all the world over; as the hour for the purification of the world is coming, and very especially in Spain, by way of a harsh divine scourge.
No more is needed than to observe the crude reality. And when vice and heresy and apostasy and atheism are publicly displayed, they will surely penetrate all social classes without exception. Despite so many Apparitions and miracles, the Catholic masses do not awaken, but turn a deaf ear to Heaven’s continuous clamour; those who were moved to repentance grow cold, and because of one and another, almost all have turned against the most transcendent of all Apparitions, those of Palmar, denying them, scorning them, and persecuting them by every means, even wicked ones. Where is faith? They arrived at general apostasy because they took the road to unbelief. But why don’t they believe? It must be proclaimed clearly and loudly for all to hear: they do not believe because they lead materialized lives, and yet worse than material, they live for money. Matter and money, by their weight, push downwards.
If they want to believe, they must relinquish that life and detest it, and go after supernatural life, not only to admire it and celebrate it, but to live it well: that we should not admire and sing to Christ and Mary as being of long ago, but as present in us; and not as dead, but as living among us, and within us. Hence we must live Their lives well. The supernatural is spirit which, by its lightness, ascends to Heaven.
The Marian Apparitions of the Last Times constitute an exceptional supernatural blossoming, great and extraordinary, as great and extraordinary as are the denials, the capitulations and apostasies of the present time. The fruits are called to be immense, since present human prevarication is unheard-of.
The apparitions of Ezquioga are of great importance: they prophesy the Religious Order of the Crossbearers of Seville, and are also a prelude to the Apparitions in Palmar, for they have in common that they are exceptionally prodigious, with numerous seers, cures of the sick, conversions of sinners, revelations of intimate secrets, prophecies come true, deserved chastisements, special favours received, and the sanctification of Christian souls in the years of Heavenly Apparitions and revelations.
The colossal grandeur of this marvellous affair blinds the enemies of the Apparitions; it alarms, belittles, crushes and confuses them. And they lash out on all sides and by every means to deny, blacken, and attempt to prevent the supernatural work from gaining strength.
But take into account the words of the Most Holy Virgin in Ezquioga: “Those who have not defended Christ’s glory, will not enjoy it”, and the glory of Christ is the glory of His Mother, which they place after their created interests, which will avail them absolutely nothing on the day of the great trial.
Why attack so insistently as they do? Well, here God’s justice will surely avenge the offences given to His Mother, so much the more since by continuing so insistently many souls have been and are being lost.
The means Heaven uses to save today’s mankind, flighty, blind, hardened in sin, are the same means which God’s enemies use to deny, scorn and insult. Humanly speaking there is no solution. The supreme means are the reiterated, multiple Apparitions of the Most Holy Virgin, fiercely combated as much as misunderstood, precisely for lack of faith and good Christian sense. Apparitions are by no means new in the Church of God, but recur throughout Church History. Saint Origen himself tells us of many boys and girls who had repeated visions similar to those we are dealing with. He said it was “a supernatural flowering attributed to the needs of those times of persecution.” But these times are surely still more calamitous than those, owing to the lack of faith. Is it surprising, then, that now, in greater need, greater and more frequent apparitions occur?