Unconscious after motorcycle accident (Francisca Olivella)

Reprinted with king permission from GARABANDAL JOURNAL / March-April 2010


A letter to Conchita from Francisca Olivella de Subietas of Barcelona, dated October 31, 1961, and translated by Dr. Edward Serrano

I have delayed in writing because I wanted to give you some great news, so you can also tell it to Father Valentin and your little friends Mari Loli, Jacinta and Mari Cruz. But I’m afraid, since the doctor would not sign this, that people are not going to believe it, but for those who witnessed it (the parents of the young man and his grandmother and nuns, nurses, my husband and especially myself) this is a big miracle.

This sixteen-year-old lad named Juan was involved in a motorcycle accident on October 1,1961. He hit his head against a wall, becoming unconscious and was transferred to the hospital in an extremely serious condition. After eight days in coma he was operated on without any results.

On the twelfth, I went to see him and he looked like a cadaver. He was totally unconscious with his mouth covered with whitish crusted secretions and his heart beats were dropping in frequency and strength; he could not see, talk or eat and had to be fed artificially. This was the situation for twelve days. Imagine how his parents felt!

Juan’s mother had been working as a housemaid for 35 years, and on her saint’s day (her name is Pilar) I encouraged her not to lose faith and gave her a medal kissed by Our Lady and a pine needle [from the Pines in Garabandal], and told her I’d send her a crucifix kissed by the Virgin. A few hours before I left for Garabandal on the fourteenth, I sent her the crucifix. Imagine her faith and joy as she placed it on his breast! I also told her that you girls would ask the Virgin for his cure and my own son’s cure, and that’s what you did, dear Conchita.

Conchita in ecstasy offering a crucifix to a woman to kiss

Those poor parents. How long those fourteen days of anguish must have seemed! On the fifteenth day at 7:30 a.m., he recovered consciousness, called his parents and kissed them as normally as if he had just woke from a long sleep (he had been wearing the crucifix for less than twenty-four hours). For the fourteen days after his healing he did not experience much pain and today on the thirty-first, he left the hospital walking on his own two feet. The doctor had kept him there for observation after his spectacular recovery. When he woke up on the fifteenth the doctor could not explain it. But the nuns and the nurses believe this was a great miracle.

You can imagine, Conchita, how happy I felt when I got home on the twentieth and I was told I about the recovery of this young man. His parents are exploding with joy and don’t tire of thanking Our Lady

I found out that two days after he woke up he got up for a short while, and the first thing he did was walk to a crucifix hanging on the wall of his room, cross himself and pray.

I’ve asked the doctor many times to put it in writing, but he refuses. He doesn’t want to be mixed up in miracles but has been very polite about it. I didn’t ask the nurses or nuns to sign it as I did not want to compromise them, seeing the doctor had refused.

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