The 1900 Apparition
During the Boxer Rebellion in China, about 10,000 soldiers attacked the village of Dong Lu in April 1900, trying to kill the approximately 1,000 Christians who lived there. A glowing apparition of Mary wearing a white robe appeared in the sky over the village as the soldiers attacked, and the soldiers fired at the apparition after they saw it. Despite the soldiers' efforts to shoot down Mary's apparition, she continued to shine brightly in the sky.
As the soldiers kept firing, another apparition appeared: A majestic angel -- whom witnesses believed to be Archangel Michael -- rode a horse surrounded by blazing flames of fire down from the sky and into the midst of the soldiers on the ground. By himself, Michael drove out all of the thousands of soldiers from the village.
Villagers learned afterward that their local priest, Father Wu, had prayed to Mary for help from the soldiers' attacks. Dong Lu residents built a church in honor of Mary to express their gratitude for the help they received. But the church was destroyed during World War 2 after it was hit by Japanese bombs.
The 1995 Apparition
The Catholic Church built a shrine in 1992 to commemorate the 1900 apparition events and organized a large celebratory worship service nearby in an open field on May 23, 1995, which about 30,000 people attended. During the opening prayer, those present all noticed what they reported was a miraculous phenomenon lasting about 20 minutes: The sun moved from right to left in the sky and shone down light rays of various different colors, and then apparitions of Mary holding a child (representing her son, Jesus Christ) appeared in the sky.
Mary did not speak during the apparition, but witnesses (Chinese Christians whose faith was oppressed by the government) reported feeling comforted and encouraged by her appearance. The overwhelming public interest in visiting the shrine after the apparition took place upset the Chinese government, and government officials subsequently tried to ban people from going there. After the government's efforts to prevent spiritual pilgrims from visiting the site proved unsuccessful, the Chinese military destroyed the Dong Lu shrine.