Shortly after the change of the Millennium, in a tiny Mexican village, people of different faiths are flocking to Santa Pelagia from all over the planet to witness a miraculous visitation. Among them are twenty-four who experience something more personal: a messenger clothed in the raiments of his or her own beliefs - the Virgin Mary, an angel of Islam, the Hindu goddess Kali. And each is given the same terrifying message: the Day of Judgment is at hand.. "The Vatican sends Father Michele Deauchez to investigate. And Deauchez, caught up in the incredible experience, watches his palms run red with blood from the wounds of the stigmata. Yet, as a man of reason, a man deeply scarred by his own experience of the supernatural, he cannot - will not - believe.. "Simon Hill is an investigator of a different stripe. A top reporter for the New York Times, Hill has a nose for news - and Santa Pelagia smells like Pulitzer material. Especially when the portents foretold in the Book of Revelations - and now by the witnesses of Santa Pelagia, the so-called Twenty-Four - begin to come true.. "As Deauchez and Hill search ever deeper for the truth - penetrating the holiest councils of the Vatican, the boardrooms of powerful multinational corporations, and the highest reaches of the U.S. government and military - they begin to wonder: Is this phenomenon a case of mass hysteria ... a devious, far-reaching plot ... or has God truly spoken?.
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