Tens of thousands of people are traveling to the Knock shrine in Ireland this weekend for a predicted apparition by the Virgin Mary.
There is such strong belief in her appearance that people are even placing bets at Irish bookmakers.
Irish spiritual healer Joe Coleman, who predicted the appearances, says Our Lady has told him she is very angry at the world and is threatening to close the gates of Heaven.
“She will rock the foundations of the church if the people do not listen, from Rome back down to where we are, down to Knock. And the gates of Heaven will be closed,” he said.
“She says she’ll do it, I don’t know how she’ll do it, but she’s angry,” he said.
Coleman, 55, says Mary will appear at the Basilica at the church in Knock at 3pm on Saturday.
A crowd of some 5,000 people gathered at Knock earlier this month following Coleman's original prediction and more than 10,000 people have viewed the video of the event on YouTube.
Church officials are unhappy with Coleman's predictions. Archbishop of Tuam Dr Michael Neary said such predictions were "not healthy," and did not "give glory to God and certainly is not good witness to the faith to be looking for extraordinary phenomena."
Coleman, from Ballyfermot in Dublin, says this is rubbish.
“I don’t think Archbishop Neary has ever seen the Blessed Mother, because he’s hiding behind his closed doors in his big house where he lives.”
Coleman said that the church “is not a building. It’s made of the people of Ireland. Does he not believe in the apparition of Bernadette? Padre Pio? Medjugorje?”
He says people want to go to Knock, “because Our Lady is telling us to come back to the church. Thousands of people were praying and crying and calling . They just want something to hold onto because the government aren’t giving them anything to hold onto.”
And Coleman says Our Lady will appear two more times before Christmas. "I know, because she’s already told me she will.”
Meanwhile, Paddy Power bookmakers say they will pay out on the Virgin Mary bet as long as the sighting is reported on RTE.
Ken Robertson from Paddy Power “There is definitely something about Mary this month. Needless to say we’ll be keeping a very close eye on the skies over Knock this Saturday afternoon”
Odds for next sighting of the Blessed Virgin
11/10 Knock Shrine
8/1 Croagh Patrick
10/1 Lough Derg
10/1 Glen Columbkille
12/1 Buncrana, Co. Donegal
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