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Our Lady of Good Success

on Saturday, 01 May 2010. Posted in Virgin Mary

One day in the year 1582, a young nun prayed before the Blessed Sacrament in the choir of her convent in Quito. Suddenly, she heard a terrifying rumble and saw the church enveloped in a thick, smoke-filled darkness. The main altar alone remained illuminated, as if in broad daylight. There, the tabernacle door swung open and our crucified Lord came forth, nailed to a life-size cross. The Blessed Virgin Mary, Saint John the Evangelist, and Saint Mary Magdalen stood by, as on Calvary. Our Lord was agonizing.

The young nun heard a voice: “This punishment is for the twentieth century.” Then she saw three swords hanging over Our Lord’s head, each with an inscription. On the first was written, “I shall punish heresy;” on the second, “I shall punish blasphemy;” and on the third, “I shall punish impurity.”

Then the Blessed Virgin addressed the young nun: “My daughter, do you wish to sacrifice yourself for these people?” “I am ready,” responded the nun. At that, the three swords plunged into the nun’s heart and she fell dead by the violence of the pain.

 

Mariana

In the year 1563, a little girl was born to Don Diego Torres and Dona Maria Berriochoa, both noble Spaniards and fervent Catholics. At the baptismal font the girl, their first child, received the name of Mariana Francisca.

This privileged girl was singled out by Divine Providence from her earliest days. To begin with, she was graced with a rare angelical beauty. As she grew, her one fascination was Jesus hidden in the Blessed Sacrament, before Whom she knelt for hours even at the age of six. Because of her spiritual maturity, her confessor allowed her to receive Communion at nine years, an age then considered very early for first communicants.

So intense was Mariana’s joy at this first meeting with her Sacramental God that she swooned and fell into a deep faint. During this “faint” she saw Our Lord Jesus as a young boy of her own age placing a beautiful ring on her finger, claiming her for Himself. Mariana readily accepted this proposal. The Blessed Virgin Mary and Saint Joseph witnessed the event and stood as sponsors to this “engagement.”

In this same vision, the Blessed Virgin showed her that she was destined to belong to Her Order of the Immaculate Conception. This order had recently been founded by another privileged soul, Saint Beatrix da Silva, a Portuguese woman of noble lineage.

 

The Order of the Immaculate Conception

The new order adopted the Franciscan rule and took Saint Francis of Assisi as their mentor and father. Their habit is white and blue, the colors of the Immaculate Conception, with a black veil.

Some influential and pious ladies, in the then Spanish colony of Ecuador, learned of the recently established order. Delighted with the new institute’s devotion, these ladies wished to have it established in Quito, their country’s capital. They submitted their request for this to King Philip II of Spain. Acceding to their petition, he named a nun of great virtue, Mother Maria of Jesus Taboada, to head the foundation of the new convent. This virtuous and holy nun, an aunt of Mariana, was to be accompanied by six other nuns, all women of great merit and solid virtue.

They were Mothers Francisca of the Angels, Anne of the Conception, Lucy of the Cross, Magdalen of Saint John, Catherine of the Conception, and Maria of the Incarnation.

 

The separation

Mariana was then just nine years old, but God wished to pluck this rose before it even budded. One day, as she received Holy Communion, He again appeared to her and told her that He wished her to leave her father’s house and to embrace His cross in a far-off land. Mariana understood that she was to go with her aunt as part of the expedition to found the order of the Immaculate Conception in the Americas. Burning with love for her crucified Jesus, she had already reached that stage of love where sufferings pose no obstacle.

Broken-hearted but resigned, her most Christian parents gave her over to her holy aunt, who now promised to be her true mother.

 

The voyage

The devil could not bear the thought of this foundation being accomplished. No sooner had the nuns’ ship left port than a terrible tempest, the likes of which had seldom been seen before, overtook them. The sky changed from clearest day to the darkest night. The frightened sailors did not know what to do and thought all was lost. In fact, the ship seemed doomed.

It was then that both aunt and niece saw in the raging waters a horrible and gigantic snake with seven heads, attempting to destroy the ship. Mariana screamed at seeing this and lost consciousness. Mother Maria prayed to God with all her soul, asking that if He truly willed that the foundation be accomplished, He quell the storm.

As soon as Mother Maria said this prayer, Mariana opened her eyes and the light of day overcame the darkness. But a terrible voice was heard: “I will not allow this foundation to come about; I will not allow its progress; I will not allow it to endure to the end of time; I will persecute it.” Mother Maria knew that Mariana had seen something during her faint and, retiring with her to a secluded place, asked her to relate all she had been shown.

“I don’t know where I have been, my Mother,” answered the girl, “but I saw a serpent bigger than the sea, twisting and contorting itself. Then I saw a lady of incomparable beauty, garbed with the sun and crowned with stars and with a babe in her arms. On the lady’s breast, I saw a monstrance with the Blessed Sacrament. In one of her hands she held a golden cross having a lance point.

“Anchoring the lance over the Blessed Sacrament and in the infant’s hand, she struck at the serpent’s head with such force that it was completely split. At that moment, the serpent cried out all his horrible threats about not allowing the founding of the Order of the Immaculate Conception.”

Mother Maria understood all that this vision signified and was later to have a large medal cast depicting the scene. To this day, the nuns of the Immaculate Conception of Quito wear this medal over their habits.

 

Foundation

Arriving in Quito on December 30, 1576, the foundresses were received with great joy and housed in a few of the inhabitable buildings of the convent, which was still under construction. When the construction was concluded, the official founding took place on January 13, 1577.

At fifteen, Mariana entered the novitiate and, a few years later, professed. As she pronounced her vows before Mother Maria Taboada on the day of her nuptials, she was taken up in a sublime ecstasy.

Our Lord Jesus presented His own cross to His spouse and showed her all the enormous sufferings, persecutions, sicknesses, and temptations she would undergo for His sake and ours. He preserved her only from temptations against purity. She was never to have a single thought or inclination against this angelic virtue.

 

Resurrection

Mariana, always the first at all the acts of the community, did not appear on the day following her vision of Our Lord on His cross. Noting her absence, the abbess and the other nuns searched for her. They found her dead in the lower choir, her body already cold. With enormous grief they carried the young nun’s remains to her cell and laid her on her bed.

The doctor, Don Sancho, and the Franciscan Friars, who attended the convent, were all called. Don Sancho confirmed that death had occurred and there was nothing to be done except give her proper burial.

Outside, the people of Quito clamored at the convent doors to see the body of their beloved benefactress, for Mother Mariana had become well-known in the town, having helped many with her counsels, penances, prayers, and even miracles.

 

The two crowns

Mother Mariana appeared before the Divine Judge. Finding no fault in her, He said, “Come, beloved of My Father, and receive the crown We have prepared for you from the beginning of the world.” She was thus in heaven before the Blessed Trinity and the celestial court, in unutterable happiness.

Sighing and weeping, the people begged God to return her to them. Wishing to lend an ear to the supplications of these children on earth, Our Lord presented Mother Mariana with two crowns, one of glory and the other of lilies intertwined with thorns. He bade her choose one, making her understand that by choosing the crown of glory, she would remain in Heaven, as was her right, but by choosing the other, she would return to earth and resume her suffering.

The humble virgin then asked her Beloved to choose for her. “No,” answered Our Lord. “When I took you for my spouse, I tested your will, and now I wish to do the same.” The Blessed Virgin Mary now spoke: “My daughter, I left the glories of Heaven and returned to earth to protect My children. I want you to imitate Me in this, for your life is very necessary for My Order of the Immaculate Conception.

“Woe to the colony in the twentieth century!’’ continued the Virgin. “If then there are no souls who, with their life of sacrifice and holocaust following your example, will appease Divine Justice, fire will come from heaven and, consuming its inhabitants, will purify Quito.”

Hearing this, the humble virgin agreed to return to earth. She was to have a long life of incredible sufferings, since part of her mission on earth was to atone for the sins of our poor, chaotic, corrupted, and sinful century.

 

Stigmata, sickness, and death

Because Mariana of Jesus was destined for extraordinary graces all her life, Our Lord spared her nothing that could possibly contribute to her purification and perfection. Thus, on the night of September 17, 1588, as Mother Mariana prayed, she received the holy wounds of Our Lord Jesus in her hands, feet, and side. She cried out and was left trembling, and had to be helped to her bed. The stigmata appeared in the palms of her hands and the soles of her feet like puncture wounds; on her side was a reddish-purple mark like a sword wound.

After this, she sickened terribly and entered an excruciating trial. She could not move a single member of her body. Aggravating her sufferings, the devil did his utmost to break her by suggesting to her that her life had been in vain, a lie, a hoax. He prowled around her bed constantly in the form of a hideous serpent, the sight of which tormented her unceasingly.

One night, no longer being able to bear this terrible five-month ordeal, she called to the Most Blessed Virgin. Then, feeling a hand caressing her head, she looked up to see the Queen of Heaven, beautiful, kind, and majestic in a nimbus of light.

She could now move and no longer saw the hideous serpent. Her condition still worsened, however, and, to the distress of the entire community, she once again breathed her last. It was Holy Saturday, and her body was laid in state in the low choir. The multitudes came to view it and cried aloud: “The saint is dead! Our angel is gone!”

Yet, the next morning, as the community filed into the high choir to recite the Office, they found her praying! Like her Divine Spouse, Whom she sought to copy in everything, she had been resurrected on Easter morning and returned to life once more to continue suffering for souls and for the world.

 

Predictions about the community

Both Mother Mariana and Mother Maria were shown that very soon, incited by mankind’s enemy, some unruly and disobedient nuns of their convent, who wanted a less stringent rule than the Franciscan rule, would attempt and obtain the separation of their community from the direction of the Franciscan Friars. Since the order of the Immaculate Conception was like a branch on the tree of the Franciscan Order, this separation caused the faithful nuns a most grievous suffering.

In 1594, Mother Maria Taboada, who had been truly a mother to Mother Mariana and all those under her care, rendered her soul to God. She had suffered greatly before her death, and the community was inconsolable at the loss of their beloved foundress. She frequently spoke with Mother Mariana in visions when the latter sought her guidance and counsel.

 

Our Lady of Good Success

In the early morning of February 2, 1594, Mother Mariana was praying in the high choir. Prostrate with her forehead touching the floor, she implored help for her community and mercy for the sinful world.

She then heard a sweet voice calling her name. Rising quickly, she beheld a most beautiful lady in an aura of light. On her left arm, she held the Child Jesus and on her right, a crosier of the purest gold adorned with such precious stones as are not to be found on this earth.

“Who art thou, beautiful lady?” she asked, “and what dost thou wish? Dost thou not know that I am but a poor nun, filled with love for God, true, but suffering and tried to the utmost?”

The lady answered: “I am Mary of Good Success, the Queen of Heaven and Earth. Precisely because you are a religious soul full of love for God and for His Mother, who now speaks to you, I have come from Heaven to sooth your burdened heart.”

Then the Mother of God showed her how her prayers and penances pleased God. She explained that she held the golden crosier in her right hand because she wished to govern the convent herself, and that the devil would do all in his power to destroy the convent by means of some ungrateful daughters of hers dwelling there.

“He will not attain his goal,” she continued, “because I am the Queen of Victories and the Mother of Good Success. Under this invocation, I wish, in the centuries to come, to perform miracles for the preservation of this, my convent and its inhabitants.

“Until the end of the world, I will have holy daughters, heroic souls, in the obscure life of their convent, who, suffering persecutions and slanders from within their own community, will be much loved by God and His Mother…

“Their lives of prayer, penance, and sacrifice will be extremely necessary in all times. After having spent their lives unknown to all, they will be called to heaven to occupy an exalted throne of glory.” She then revealed to Mother Mariana that hers would be a long and suffering life, but she bid her never lose courage.

Saying this, she placed the Infant Jesus in the humble virgin’s arms. Clasping Him tightly to her heart, Mother Mariana felt the strength to suffer all for His honor and glory and the good of souls. Our Lady was to appear several times to Mother Mariana under the title of the Mother of Good Success. During some of these apparitions she prophesied many things about our own twentieth century.

The ominous day predicted both to Mother Maria and Mother Mariana had arrived, the day in which their small flock would be separated from their divinely appointed shepherds. There had been new elections for a superior and Mother Magdalena of Jesus Valenzuela, the newly appointed prioress, lost no time in accomplishing this. This lady was not a bad person, but being weak, she often served as a tool in the hands of other nuns with evil intent.

She worked to annul the obedience to the sons of Saint Francis and to submit the direction of the monastery to the Bishop of Quito. This was a sad day for the heroic and saintly foundresses and all the obedient Conceptionists of that house. As the Franciscan Fathers said farewell, Mother Mariana and all the obedient nuns wept inconsolably. Nevertheless, they obediently submitted to the new authority. The Father Provincial of the Franciscans left them with words of encouragement and consolation, assuring them of their future return. For the unruly ones, he left words of malediction.

 

Prison

Immediately, with Mother Valenzuela at the helm but manipulated by the unruly faction, observance of the rule began to decline, prescribed times of silence were no longer observed, and abuses multiplied. Worried and afflicted in her heart with this situation, which defeated the true purpose of the conventual life, Mother Mariana humbly approached her new superior, begging as foundress and ex-prioress that these infractions and deviations be corrected for the good of the community.

The secular ecclesiastical prelate, now in authority over the convent, heard of this appeal. But the rebellious faction made sure he received the worst possible report, making Mother Mariana out to be unruly, insubordinate, and much more. As a result, he ordered the innocent virgin to be imprisoned for three days. He also ordered that her veil be removed, that she receive a public scourging at meal times in the refectory, and that she eat kneeling on the floor.

These three days were spent in a dark, underground prison. There, Sister Mariana had to expiate her perfect innocence. After three days, she was removed to a solitary room. The Spanish foundresses, unable to contain themselves seeing her suffering, visited her there. For this they were ordered to be incarcerated along with Mother Mariana for a full month. Others who showed solidarity with them also joined the holy foundresses in prison. At one time, they were twenty-five thus paying for their fidelity. Thus did these holy souls spend those bitter days of imprisonment within their own house, persecuted, reviled, and abandoned by their own.

Tortured by pity and remorse, Mother Valenzuela could no longer bear the thought of these innocent and holy nuns incarcerated in that awful place. She wrote a letter to the Bishop confessing her weakness in allowing the rebellious nuns to manipulate her and cause the imprisonment of these perfectly innocent women. The prelate was very upset on receiving this message. He reprimanded Mother Valenzuela severely and ordered the immediate release of the victims.

After this release from imprisonment, Mother Mariana was again elected prioress, receiving the majority of the votes from the obedient faction of the convent. This caused such a fury in the rebellious band that again she was slandered to such a point that the Bishop, not knowing what to do, had her isolated in a cell. The hate-filled, unruly bloc wished to send her to the dark prison again but Mother Valenzuela would not hear of it.

 

Further prophecies

One day during this second period of isolation, as she prayed and suffered, Mother Mariana again beheld a lady of incomparable majesty and beauty surrounded by light. Once more the lady called herself Mary of Good Success.

This time, among many other things, the Mother of Good Success said: “In the nineteenth century, a truly Christian president will govern Ecuador. He will be a man of character to whom God Our Lord will grant the palm of martyrdom on this same central square where my convent stands. He will consecrate the Republic of Ecuador to the Sacred Heart of my most holy Son, and this consecration will sustain the Catholic Faith in the years to come, which will be ominous for the Church.

“During these years, in which Masonry, that accursed sect, will take over the government, there will be a cruel persecution against religious communities. They will also violently attack this convent which is particularly mine. To those wretched men this monastery will seem finished, but unbeknown to them, I live and God lives to raise in their very midst powerful defenders of this work. We will also place unsurmountable difficulties in their paths, and the triumph shall be ours.” These predictions were fulfilled to the letter.

 

Gabriel Garcia Moreno

Gabriel Garcia Moreno was a man of unshakable courage, brilliant intellect, and had an ardent love for the Church and the Papacy. As president of Ecuador, he led the republic in the paths of Faith and righteousness for several years, accomplishing tremendous religious, moral, educational, and economic reform.

Shortly after his re-election, in a great impulse of manly fervor, he shouldered a huge wooden cross during a Holy Week procession and led the cortege through the streets of Quito. Shortly thereafter, the Masonic lodges of Peru sent an assassin to kill him.

He was brutally murdered on August 6, 1875, in front of the presidential palace as he returned from Mass and Holy Communion in the Cathedral. He fell in the square on which stands the convent of the Immaculate Conception, just as Our Lady had predicted. It is said that while dying in a pool of blood from multiple machete wounds, he managed to dip his finger into his own blood and write on the pavement, “Dios no muere” – God does not die.

During this same apparition, the Blessed Virgin of Good Success asked Mother Mariana to have a statue of her made exactly as Mother Mariana saw her.

Mother Mariana was puzzled over how to obtain the Heavenly Lady’s exact measurements. Noticing her confusion, Our Lady had her remove the cord from the waist of her habit. Then, with immeasurable grace, she took one end of the cord and held it at her forehead while Mother Mariana touched the other end to Our Lady’s foot. The cord, too short for such a measurement, stretched to the perfect length.

Affairs remained far from settled in the Convent of the Immaculate Conception. Always spurred by the devil who had vowed to destroy this holy house that caused so much havoc to his plans, the same brood of rebellious, disgruntled, and envious nuns never ceased plotting.

Blinded by envy and hate, the leader of the rebellion, a small nun known as “La Capitana” requested the post of prioress for herself while reviling and insulting Mother Mariana and the Spanish foundresses. She also requested their return to Spain.

This proved a fatal mistake for the revolted ones, for the Bishop now clearly saw with whom he wadealing. Indignant, the Bishop ordered La Capitana to be immediately removed and locked in the prison where her innocent victims had formerly suffered so much.

As this hate-filled and crazed creature spoke to the Bishop, Mother Mariana was sitting quietly in a corner of the room, whence she beheld hideous monkeys approaching this nun. Their mouths, eyes, and nostrils vomited fire that they poured into her heart and into those of her rebellious followers.

Mother Mariana saw that this unhappy nun and several of her followers would not be saved. But, well aware of Mother Mariana’s unbounded love for souls, Our Lord appeared to her and proposed the unimaginable. There was but one way to save this soul from the eternal flames of Hell that she well deserved for her many sins and the harm caused to the community for the coming centuries: this way was for Mother Mariana to agree to suffer five years in Hell for her. The heroic nun trembled to her very core, but she accepted.

 

La Capitana

One day, the prioress and ex-prioress heard ugly voices issuing from the prison. Mother Valenzuela asked Mother Mariana what she thought these might be, to which the holy nun responded: “Mother, this poor sister is a victim of the devil. Let us go and visit her and bring her out to the garden so she does not despair. We must look after her soul.” On seeing them, the miserable creature began running around the prison hitting her head against the walls and screaming: “I’m dying! I’m dying! The devil is going to take me!” Then she fell face to the ground.

Turning to Mother Valenzuela, Mother Mariana beckoned, “Come, Mother.” “No,” answered the superior, Mother Valenzuela, much frightened, “your Reverence must go alone.” Bending down to the fallen nun, Mother Mariana, turned her over, weeping as she did so. Her tears bathed the face of the wretched creature, who was foaming at the mouth and had blood flowing from her nose. Mother Mariana cleaned and rubbed her, attempting to bring her back to her senses. Then she asked for Mother Francisca of the Angels, who was the infirmarian, to provide a few remedies.

As Mother Mariana waited, she suddenly noticed two black creatures crouching against the wall in a corner of the room, timidly trying to hide from her. Indignant, she addressed them in a loud voice: “Vile and abominable beasts, what are you doing here? Go back to your cruel home, for this is a holy place, a house of prayer and penance. All your efforts to snatch my sister’s soul will be in vain. Jesus Christ died for her and, in spite of you, she will be saved. I command you in the name of the mysteries of the Most Holy Trinity, of the Divine Eucharist, of The Divine Maternity of Mary Most Holy and the glorious Assumption of her body and soul into Heaven, that you immediately leave this holy place. Leave it, and never more return to torment any of my sisters with your abominable presence.”

As she pronounced these last words, there was a terrible noise. The ground shook and horrible screams were heard. Then the devils were gone.

On returning to her senses, the sick nun was very embarrassed, but she would talk only to Mother Valenzuela. She spent a terrible night suffering the cruelties of a criminal conscience. Still, envy had such a hold over her heart that she could not bring herself to ask pardon of Mother Mariana, much less bring herself to love her. A priest was called, but she would not confess. The priest left, saddened by this scene of dying impenitence. She then breathed her last.

Mother Mariana continued to hold the corpse in her arms. Her Spanish sisters and co-foundresses begged her to lay her back on the bed, but Mother Mariana said: “My Sisters and Mothers, do not so soon forget my sacrifice that was accepted to save this soul. Pray to God fervently for her. She is now before the judgment seat of God and she has realized all the evil she has done. She will live again. Do not be frightened; remain calm because she will repent and amend. Later she will die and be saved, but her Purgatory will last to the day of Judgment. This the Lord has revealed to me.”

As she finished saying this, the dead nun’s body quivered and she opened her eyes. She looked all around the room as if seeking someone. Then, fixing her eyes on Mother Mariana, she wanted to speak but her voice choked in a torrent of tears. After a general confession, she slowly began to recover.

 

Mother Mariana enters Hell

Some time later, Our Lord appeared to Mother Mariana. He reminded her that the time had come for her to pay the price for the salvation of La Capitana’s soul. He let her know that the next day, after receiving Holy Communion, as soon as the sacramental species dissolved within her, she would enter Hell.

The next day, as she approached to receive her God in Holy Communion and to take leave of her intimate relationship with Him for the long duration of five years, she felt as if her heart would break. She sought to hold on to Him as much as possible, but as soon as the divine species dissolved, she felt a terrible pain as if her heart had been wrenched from her chest. From that moment she became totally insensitive to God.

Although she was to remain five years in the state of a damned soul, she lost the notion of time and was convinced that it would be endless. Her sublime love for God and her most holy Mother now changed into a feeling of hate, disgust, and despair.

Meanwhile, as her soul suffered all the torments of the damned, her five bodily senses were steeped in incredible torture. Her body was like a glowing ember, burning without being consumed amidst unspeakable pains. Her eyes beheld the most horrible infernal scenes, while the most atrocious blasphemies constantly assaulted her ears.

Her sense of smell was plagued by all the filth of humanity and her sense of touch was tormented by sharp points penetrating to the very center of her body. Her palate was tortured by a horrible, unknown taste, while demons forced melted sulphur down her throat. At the same time, the demons beat her head to the point of spilling her brains, thus inciting her to wrath, despair, and blasphemy.

She suffered all this while living her daily life in the convent. She never opened her lips with a single complaint to the community. Rather, she remained a perfect example of sweetness, humility, and obedience. Only the Franciscan priest who directed her and the other foundresses knew what Mother Mariana endured, and they prayed for her unceasingly.

 

Death of La Capitana

Five years later, while in prayer, Mother Mariana cried out and fell as if dead. She was unconscious for a long time and then finally, sighing deeply, opened her eyes, which filled with tears of relief. Her hell was over. Gradually she recovered her beautiful color and health. Not long after, La Capitana fell sick once again and approached her end. She confessed all her sins and died calmly, assisted by Holy Mother Church.

Mother Mariana of Jesus saw the sister’s judgement, where she was shown that her salvation was owed to her mother’s five years in Hell. She carried this immense gratitude with her to eternity. After Mother Mariana’s death, this soul in Purgatory was gradually forgotten.

 

The miraculous statue

On January 21, 1610, the Blessed Mother of Good Success appeared for the second time, now accompanied by the three archangels Michael, Gabriel, and Raphael, to request again that her statue be made.

Even after these two requests of Our Lady herself, Mother Mariana still hesitated. She feared that the Bishop would doubt her and pose obstacles to the erection of such an image. She also feared that the Indian population of Quito, only recently catechized and still with inclinations to idolatry, would offer the wrong reverence to such a magnificent representation of God’s Mother.

On February 2, she found herself before the Queen of Heaven, who stood bathed in glowing lights within an oval frame of glimmering stars. Mariana felt an impulse to escape but something restrained her. She saw the sovereign Queen looking at her with severity and without saying a word.

The Heavenly Lady then reprimanded her patiently, asking her why she doubted and feared, despite knowing her to be a powerful Queen. She assured Mother Mariana that there would be no danger of idolatry. Much to the contrary, this statue was not only meant for the good of the convent but also that of the people in general throughout the centuries.

On the morning of January 16, as the sisters approached the high choir to pray the morning Office, they heard a beautiful melody. On entering the choir, they beheld the statue, bathed in a celestial light, while angelic voices sang the “Salve Sancta Parens.” They saw that the statue had been exquisitely finished and that its face emitted rays of the brightest light!

Francisco del Castillo, the sculptor, arriving and beholding the image, fell to his knees saying, “Mothers, what do I see? This precious statue is not the work of my hands. I do not know how to describe what I feel in my heart. This was made by angelic hands!” In fact, the outer layer of the statue lay on the ground. The Bishop attested also that the image had been modified and enriched by other than human hands.

 

Home

At three o’clock on the morning of February 2, 1634, Mother Mariana had just finished her prayer in the upper choir when she noticed that the sanctuary lamp had gone out.

Instinctively, she prepared to descend to the church in order to re-light it, but an unknown force immobilized her so that she could not take a single step. At this moment, Our Lady of Good Success appeared carrying the Divine Infant in her left hand and the crosier in her right. Calmly approaching, she said: “My beloved daughter, today I bring you the pleasant notice of your death, which shall occur in eleven months. Your eyes will then close to the material light of this world in order to open to the brilliance of eternal light. Prepare your soul so that, purified ever more, it may fully enter into the enjoyment of your Lord.” Knowing the day and hour of her death, she prepared her aggrieved daughters for her final voyage to eternity. She was to go to her Lord at 3 p.m. on January 16, 1635. She was then seventy-two years of age.

Around one o’clock of that day, she asked the Mother Abbess to summon the community. When they arrived, she read aloud her magnificent testament, which began by affirming that she died a faithful daughter of the Holy Roman Catholic and Apostolic Church.

Then, with a voice vibrant with emotion but firm with the strength of faith and sincerity, she echoed Her Master’s words: “It is necessary that I go but I will not leave you orphans. I go to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God, and the Divine Consoler will descend to comfort you.” After receiving the Holy Viaticum, she, on fire with love, calmly closed her eyes and ceased breathing. Mariana of Jesus was with God.

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