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Regarding UFOs and religion, many UFO researchers have suggested that UFOs and their occupants have had an influence on at least some of the historical religions. At the very least, UFOs and their occupants, when seen, have often been interpreted within a religious framework. For example, consider the widely cited miracle at Fatima, Portugal, which occurred on October 13, 1917, and was witnessed by roughly 70,000 people. This large number of witnesses was the direct result of a methodical sequence of ever greater miracles occurring at the same location, which was a pasture named Cova da Iria, 2½ kilometers from the village of Fatima. The sequence of events had the following dates and approximate attendance: May 13 attended by 3; June 13 attended by 50; July 13 attended by 4,500; August 13 attended by 18,000; September 13 attended by 30,000; October 13 attended by 70,000.
On May 13, 1917, three children who worked as shepherds apparently met and conversed with a Caretaker, who appeared as a woman floating on top of a tree. The woman wore radiant, beautiful clothing. The children, being Catholic, believed that she was the Virgin Mary. Among other things, this Caretaker told them to return to the same spot each month, on the 13th day. On October 13, 1917, at the Cova da Iria site, at the appointed time of noon, there appeared a giant, radiant UFO, which had a flat, disc shape. This UFO maneuvered about for roughly ten minutes, changing colors, spinning, and sometimes dropping closer to the ground, which frightened the audience greatly.
 Vallee, Dimensions, p. 177.