The Sacred Heart
Of all the visions that Jacinta Gonzalez had in Garabandal, one stands out over all the rest — her vision of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.
While the other three girls were in ecstasy seeing Saint Michael, Jacinta was seeing Jesus. He was about ten feet away standing on a small, white cloud slightly above the ground. He was incomparably beautiful; "the handsomest of men" as Jacinta said. He wore a white robe with a red outer garment that hung diagonally down across His body from the right shoulder. His heart, exposed off-center to His left, was a brilliant red with rays of both white and gold streaming from it.
With His left hand, he pointed to His heart and with His right, He beckoned the girl to come. His entire body gave off brilliant rays that surpassed in brightness the subsequent appearances of Our Lady. The vision was set against a cloud-like background.
What most impressed Jacinta was the infinite love that seemed to radiate from Jesus' gaze, penetrating her heart, and His gestures that seemed to invite her and all mankind to enter into His Sacred Heart.
Interview with Fr. Benac
On December 23, 1978, Jacinta was interviewed by Father Francis Benac, S.J., at her home in California. Here are excerpts from that interview:
Father Benac: We have read about your vision of the Sacred Heart. Please tell me about this experience.
Jacinta: I recall a day when the four of us went a little further up [in the lane] from where the angel had first appeared — no one from the village followed us — when suddenly the other three fell into ecstasy seeing the angel. I was a little behind and seeing them in ecstasy I said to myself: "But I don't see anything." Then suddenly like a flash, I saw the Sacred Heart of Jesus which made a deep impression on me. He did not speak to me, but His gaze penetrated deep into my heart.
Benac: What impressed you most?
Jacinta: His eyes, His look — a gaze that penetrated so deeply into me that I cannot explain it.
Benac: What were your thoughts at that moment?
Jacinta: Oh, Father, more than seeing Our Lady, this vision of the Sacred Heart had the greatest impact on me even though I did not see Him again. Whenever I see His image, I have an intense feeling of suddenly seeing someone very dear.
Benac: Do you still feel this?
Jacinta: Oh yes. Whenever I see His image or talk about Him just as we're doing now, I feel within me something I cannot explain.
Benac: When you passed through the period of the doubts, did you also doubt this vision?
Jacinta: No Father. This vision has always remained vivid in my mind. I remember telling my mother that I may have doubted seeing Our Lady or the angel, but regarding this vision of the Sacred Heart even if I were to die, I would insist on its truth. It is something I have never doubted.
Benac: Did this particular vision lead you to a greater love of God? Did you think that He wanted something special from you?
Jacinta: I can't answer that since He didn't speak to me. But my heart did grow much closer to His.