Changed Man (Valentin Soto)
Reprinted with kind permission from GARABANDAL JOURNAL
NOT WHAT HE EXPECTED
Valentin Soto went to Garabandal on a lark and came away a changed man
■ Excerpted from Los Milagros o Favores de Nuestra Madre de Garabandal and translated from Spanish by Dr. Edward Serrano.
On March 17,1968, a group from Valladolid went to Garabandal. One of them was a young married man named Valentin Soto. He has authorized me to publish his conversion caused by the Virgin at Garabandal that happened the same day they arrived in Garabandal. I did send his name to Don Abraham Mirada from Barcelona to be included in his Golden Book.
This young man, Valentin, went along with the group, looking forward to spending a day in the country. The Virgin of Garabandal was the farthest thought in his mind. He had been married eight years and was not a practicing Catholic, seldom went to Mass and besides that, had the very bad habit of blasphemy that for him was part of his normal speech. He was far from God and from Our Lady.
When they went inside Conchitas house and he saw Conchita, how she looked, he wanted to flatter her, but could not say a word. Something inside him did not let him do it. She looked at him with such a penetrating look that besides not being able to pronounce flirty words to her, from that moment on he never pronounced another blasphemy. He attends Mass on Sundays and Holy Days of Obligation. He helps with the collection at Mass, goes to Communion, and has developed a great devotion to the Virgin of Garabandal. His wife was pregnant, and in his devotion to Our Lady of Garabandal, he promised that if the baby was a girl he would name her Maria del Carmen de Garabandal.
Everybody thought he was joking but that’s the way it happened. The baby girl was bom in May and on the nineteenth of that month she was baptized with that name. When the priest asked if there was a Virgin by that name they presented him with a religious card of Our Lady of Mount Carmel of Garabandal printed in Jalapa, Mexico (inspired by the local ecclesiastical authorities.)
Thanks to God and Our Lady we have a new member of the church with the name of Maria del Carmen de Garabandal. We wonder if there is anyone else in the world by that name?
In union of prayers and with much love, Paquita Manueco de Garay Valladolid, August 1999 Commentary: In Barcelona there is another girl with the same name: Maria del Carmen de Garabandal.
GRACE OF A CURE
My name is Michael Guillaume and I was bom on June 4,1947, in Noir- dans-le-Ferroux, Haute Saone [France] where I now live. In September of 1967, as a result of an automobile accident, I was taken to Colmar Hospital in critical condition with a fractured skull and complete loss of vision. My aunt came to see me and gave me a picture of Padre Pio with the security of being placed under the protection of this religious, who had been recommended by a woman whose address they gave us. This woman sent pictures and prayers as well as a medal of Our Lady of Garabandal which had made many miracles.
Taking the medal, I put it on and blurted out, “I can see.” The doctor who was present, was amazed and said, “So far, I have done everything for the head and other injuries but it was impossible for me to restore the sight.”
When I was discharged from the hospital, my aunt and I went to Vesoul to visit the woman who sent me the medal and a rosary from Garabandal, and thank her. Since then, the medal and rosary are my protectors along with Saint Michael, my patron. Thanks to Our Lady, I have returned to a normal life and to work.
Signed: Michael Guillaume Vesoul, February 8,1969
THE CURE OF LYLE McCOY
In the anecdotes section of our March-April 2010 edition, on page 15, is an account we took directly from the hook Los M Milagros o Favores de Nuestra Madre de Garabandal, which appears under the heading “Healing of an Infant.” It has been brought to our attention by Seamus O’Connor of Dublin, Ireland, that there are some errors in the account that ought to be corrected. First of all, the child, Lyle McCoy (although not named in the piece), is a boy and not a girl. Secondly, and this we consider as a major omission, the child was touched with a stone that had been kissed by the Blessed Virgin at Garabandal. Seamus was good enough to send us the transcript of a tape recording of the mother of Lyle which gives an accurate account of what exactly happened. Here it is.
“My name is Rosemari McCoy and I was born in Bombay. When my son was three months old he developed meningitis. The doctors could not diagnose which type of meningitis he had. He was being treated for two types of meningitis. He was due to die or be retarded. His temperature had shot right out of the charts. His head had grown very large and you could see the separations of the skull. His stomach, too, had grown very large. The doctors were trying various treatments but could not succeed. When I asked the doctors if he would be well again, they would say to me, “If you don’t like the hospital, you can go away.”
My mother, who is a nurse, used to be with my baby day and night. One morning, my mother and I saw a Jesuit priest come to the hospital. We did not know that he was Father [Francis] Benac and that he had come to see us. He read all the medical reports where it said that he would never be well again. Father Benac then said to me: ‘We will pray but you will have to accept the will of God.’ Father Benac prayed and touched my son Lyle with the stone kissed by Our Lady. He also touched him with the relic [perhaps something else kissed by Our Lady]. Father Benac then said to me ‘Do you know my telephone number?’ I said ‘Yes,’ but I did not know the number. He wrote his telephone number and gave it to me.
I came home and the next day, when I went to see my son, my mother said to me: ‘He is completely well.’ His temperature had left him forever. His head was back to normal. His stomach, too was back to normal. The doctors were amazed. From that day until today he is completely alright. This happened in 1976. He was six months [above she says three months] at the time and now he is seven years. ‘Now, Lyle, would you like to say your thank you to Our Lady. Come on, take the chewing gum out.’ Lyle responded, ‘Thank you, Our Lady.”’ The mother comments: “He’s very shy.” □
Reprinted from GARABANDAL JOURNAL/ July-August 2010
* * *