Remy and Reynaldo Atienza along with their daughters Madie and Mariel live in the town of Puerto Galera on the isle of Mindoro. From their home they can see MonteMaria which lies 15 kilometers across the Verde Strait. Their experiences with both Fr. Fernando and MonteMaria have profoundly transformed their lives.
Here below is a transcript of their interview taken on July 4, 2009.
Remy speaking: The first time we saw the lights happened on June 5, 2009 at 12:30 PM. I was in my house looking over to MonteMaria. I saw a bright light and immediately called my husband asking him to bring his telescope. Through the telescope I saw a large circular light and lots of stars as if they were dancing. They were white and silver in color and so bright that it hurt my eyes looking directly at them.
The next morning on Saturday, I once again looked towards MonteMaria to see where the light was coming from. I saw Mary’s crown with 12 stars! It is the same image as the statue you see here yet this wasn’t here at the time. I believe that this is a sign from God to my family to accept and believe in MonteMaria as a place of holiness.
On Friday, June 12, 2009 my husband Reynaldo was the first to see the lights. After seeing them, he asked Madie and Mariel to have a look. They confirmed that it was the same light. Madie then interjected by explaining, “At first when my Dad told me I didn’t believe but when I took a look, I saw an image of Mary’s crown.”
Then last Wednesday, July 1 at 11:30 PM, I saw the same light and image for a third time. They were bright lights, red, blue and white in color. Today after Mass, I asked the security guard here in MonteMaria if there were any visitors or an event on Wednesday night and he said, “No.”
“How have these events changed your life?”
Remy replied sobbing . . MonteMaria is a beautiful place. I remember a recent homily Father Fernando gave. He spoke of how many Filipino’s believe in creatures, magic and quack doctors who promise everything only to get themselves rich. We were victims of this. We went to quack doctors who charged fees in the belief we would be healed. Now we know that only God truly heals!
To the above question Madie added: My father never went to church and he used to be a gambler. He was a diabetic for five years taking medication. Now he no longer takes anything and just exercises.
In the past, we could not take him anywhere because he was always irritable and angry. Now he babysits the grandchildren. My Mom, sister and I always went alone. Now it is he who leads us here rain or shine and who insists that we not miss a single weekend Mass. He has completely changed.
This all started after Fr. Fernando prayed over him at a Mass in Calapan City, Mindoro on January 31, 2009. As a family we have nothing more to ask God because the blessings He has given us are overflowing. Salamat! The only thing we can say is thanks.