The Day the Freemasons Promoted Fatima

 

This post updated by evensong at 10:00 a.m. 13 Aug. 2019. See note in red at end.

On August 13, 1917, the Freemasons of Portugal gave the Apparitions of Fatima a huge boost.

The six apparitions of Our Lady of the Rosary at Fatima all occurred on the 13th of each month, except for the one in August. This was because the Administrator of the district of Ourem was a Mason. Not just any Mason, the crude and brutal Arturo Oliveira Santos was the founder-president of the Masonic Lodge of Vila Nova de Ourem and the publisher of the local newspaper. As such, he wielded a tyrannical power in his district and, concerned about the  rising fervor of the area’s Catholics in response to the apparitions, he determined to nip the phenomena in the bud.

Our Lady of Fatima, pray for us, pray for the Pope!

First, the Administrator, Arturo Oliveira Santos, summoned the children and their fathers to an interrogation at the Town Hall of Vila Nova de Ourem on August 10. Ti Marto refused to allow Francisco and Jacinta to be interrogated, and decided to answer for them, stating that, if necessary, he would be imprisoned for them. But Lúcias father, Antonio dos Santos, complied and brought her to be questioned. He stated, “If she’s lying, it’s a good thing that she should be punished for it.”

Once before the authorities, Lúcia was  brutally bullied and threatened, while her father did nothing to intervene. This lack of support caused Lúcia much suffering. Her words in this regard speak volumes for her sanctity:

“I have the happiness of suffering more! What made me suffer most, was the indifference shown me by my parents. This was all the more obvious, since I could see how affectionately my aunt and uncle treated their children. I remember thinking to myself as we went along: ‘How different my parents are from my uncle and aunt. They risk themselves to defend their children, while my parents hand me over with the greatest indifference, and let them do what they like with me! But I must be patient’, I reminded myself in my inmost heart, ‘since this means I have the happiness of suffering more for the love of You, O my God, and for the conversion of sinners.’ This reflection never failed to bring me consolation.”

When Lúcia returned home after the grueling ordeal, she raced to the old well to see Francisco and Jacinta, who had agreed to pray for her. She found them crying bitterly, and they explained to her that Lúcia’s sister had come by earlier to tell them that she had heard that Lúcia had been killed by the authorities.

Although he had so far been unable to succeed in suppressing the little shepherds, the Administrator determined to kidnap them rather than allow another “hoax” appearance. And so, on the 13th, the Administrator tricked the children and brought them to Ourem.

Continue reading “The Day the Freemasons Promoted Fatima”

Designs of Mercy – Jacinta, Part III

 

“Jacinta’s thirst for making sacrifices seemed insatiable. She always made her sacrifices with this thought, a thought which was habitual with her: to suffer for sinners, to make acts of reparation in their place, to substitute herself for them, to obtain for them pardon and the grace of conversion.”

Today, we will see where Jacinta’s heroic devotion to Our Lady of the Rosary led her in her very brief, but intense life. Most of our discussion is found in Frère Michel de la Sainte Trinité’s “The Whole Truth About Fatima Vol. II”.  Now, Frère Michel himself relied greatly on Sister Lúcia’s Memoirs as in the following.

“When, in a spirit of mortification, she did not want to eat, I said to her: “Listen, Jacinta! Come and eat now.” ‘No! I’m offering this sacrifice for sinners who eat too much.’  When she was ill, and yet went to Mass on a week day, I urged her: Jacinta, don’t come! You’re not able. Besides, today is not a Sunday! ‘That doesn’t matter. I’m going for sinners who don’t go on a Sunday.’ If she happened to hear any of those expressions which some people make a show of uttering, she covered her face with her hands and said: ‘Oh, my God, don’t those people realize that they can go to hell for saying those things? My Jesus, forgive them and convert them. They certainly don’t know that they are offending God by all this! What a pity, my Jesus! I’ll pray for them.’ Then and there, she repeated the prayer that Our Lady had taught us: ‘O my Jesus, forgive us, deliver us from the fire of hell, lead all souls to Heaven, especially those who are most in need.’ Jacinta made such sacrifices over and over again, but I won’t stop to tell any more, or I shall never end,  Lúcia tells us.”

Also, in her memoirs, Sister Lúcia remarked that little Jacinta, although the youngest, she “was the one who received from Our Lady a greater abundance of grace , and a better knowledge of God and of virtue.” Indeed, it was she who appeared to enjoy the greatest intimacy with the Most Holy Virgin. When the cycle of the six great public apparitions was completed, Jacinta continued almost uninterruptedly to enjoy supernatural favours, right up until her death.

Jacinta’s Prophetic Visions

In her Memoirs, Lúcia tells us: “One day we spent our siesta down by my parents’ well. Jacinta sat on the stone slab on top of the well. Francisco and I climbed up a steep bank in search of wild honey among the brambles in a nearby thicket. After a little while, Jacinta called out to me: “Didn’t you see the Holy Father?” “No.” “I don’t know how it was, but I saw the Holy Father in a very big house, kneeling by a table, with his head buried in his hands, and he was weeping. Outside the house, there were many people. Some of them were throwing stones, others were cursing him and using bad language. Poor Holy Father, we must pray much for him .” Frère Michel places this vision in the time period between July 13, 1917 and October, 1918, when the children fell ill.

We also know that this vision concerns an event announced in the Secret, for Lúcia continues her account, and writes: “I have already told you how, one day, two priests recommended that we pray for the Holy Father, and explained to us who the Pope was. Afterwards, Jacinta asked me: ‘Is he the one I saw weeping, the one Our Lady told us about in the Secret?’ ‘Yes, he is,’ I answered. (And Jacinta, with childlike candour, went on:) ‘The Lady must surely have shown him also to those priests. You see, I wasn’t mistaken. We need to pray a lot for him.’

This vision helps us to better understand the corresponding words of the Secret, announcing “persecutions against the Church and the Holy Father (who) will have much to suffer.”

At another time, Lúcia says, “We went to the cave called Lapa do Cabeço. As soon as we got there, we prostrated on the ground, saying the prayers the Angel had taught us. After some time, Jacinta stood up and called to me: ‘Can’t you see all those highways and roads full of people, who are crying with hunger and have nothing to eat? And the Holy Father in a church praying before the Immaculate Heart of Mary? And so many people praying with him?”

This second vision corresponds to an event prophesied in the Secret: “Some days later, Jacinta asked me: ‘Can I say that I saw the Holy Father and all those people?’ “No. Don’t you see that that’s part of the Secret? If you do, they’ll find out right away!” ‘All right! Then I’ll say nothing at all.’ ”

The striking images contemplated in her recent visions kept the Secret on Jacinta’s mind; the themes of the Secret made a more profound impression on her than on her two companions. Sister Lúcia is insistent on this point, showing clearly how the Blessed Virgin wished to make this soul – so young and so delicate, but so sensitive and courageous – the confidante of the most intimate thoughts of Her Heart. The great and dramatic Message of Our Lady was destined for the whole world; and Our Lady willed that this innocent soul, Jacinta, be penetrated with it and live it with such love that she became, as Sister Lúcia dares to say, “filled with horror”,  and was led very quickly, within a few months, to the total gift and sacrifice of her life.

Sister Lúcia continues: “As I said in the notes I sent about the book called Jacinta, she was most deeply impressed (…) with the vision of hell and the ruin of the many souls who go there, or again, the future war with all its horrors, which seemed to be always present in her mind. These made her tremble with fear. When I saw her deep in thought, and asked her: “Jacinta, what are you thinking about?” she frequently replied: “About the war which is coming, and all the people who are going to die and go to hell! How dreadful! If they would only stop offending God, then there wouldn’t be any war, and they wouldn’t go to hell!”

When Our Lady revealed the future to Jacinta, and let her see the Holy Father persecuted, mocked, abandoned by all, and in tears, Jacinta understood how much he needed prayers. “This gave Jacinta such love for the Holy Father that, every time she offered her sacrifices to Jesus, she added: ‘And for the Holy Father’. At the end of the Rosary, she always said three Hail Marys for the Holy Father.”  It is indeed surprising to observe how much, after the apparition of July 13, (1919) the thought of the Holy Father kept constantly coming back to the minds of the three seers. This was one of their major preoccupations, along with solicitude for sinners, and the sight of the terrifying war to come. Why? Undoubtedly because the Pope plays a role of decisive importance in the great prophecy of the Secret: he is already named five times in the published part of the Secret; we may believe that he is mentioned again in the part which has not yet been published. (Frère Michel, Vol II)

Another Visit of the Blessed Virgin

Towards the end of December, 1918 or in January, 1919, we read,

“Our Lady came to see us”, Jacinta said. “She told us She would come to take Francisco to Heaven very soon, and She asked me if I still wanted to convert more sinners. I said I did. She told me I would be going to a hospital where I would suffer a great deal; and that I am to suffer for the conversion of sinners, in reparation for the sins committed against the Immaculate Heart of Mary, and for love of Jesus. I asked if you would go with me. She said you wouldn’t, and that is what I find hardest. She said my mother would take me, and then I would have to stay there all alone!” On another day, Jacinta was more precise; she confided to her cousin: “Our Lady wants me to go to two hospitals, not to be cured, but to suffer more for love of Our Lord and for sinners.”

Jacinta had known for a long time that the more she suffered, the more souls she would snatch away from the eternal flames. This was a certain and absolute truth with her. Taught by the infused grace which accompanied the words of the Angel, she had understood the value of sacrifice, how pleasing it is to God, and how, in return for it  God converts sinners.

And with all her ardour, she gave a generous “yes” to the hardest sacrifice that could have asked of her, a sacrifice which she undoubtedly had never imagined: to suffer and die alone far from her mother, far from her father, and above all far from Lúcia, her only confidante and intimate friend, whose presence gave her such comfort such great joy, the only consolation that remained for her. After this, she was thoughtful for a while and then added: “If only you could be with me! The hardest part is to go without you. Maybe the hospital is a big, dark house where you can’t see, and I’ll be there suffering all alone! But never mind! I’ll suffer for love of Our Lord, to make reparation to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, for the conversion of sinners and for the Holy Father.”

Frère Michel notes,

“It is always the same intentions, the same great themes of the Secret, which habituate and incite her to heroic sacrifice. The same transports of love always come back to her lips: often she would repeat, “Sweet Heart of Mary, be my salvation! I love the Immaculate Heart of Mary so much!” Sometimes, as she would kiss a crucifix, she would press it in her hands, saying: “O my Jesus, I love You, and I wish to suffer much for Your love!” How often did she say: “O Jesus! Now You can convert many sinners, because this is really a big sacrifice!”

At Aljustrel, from October, 1918 until June 30, 1919, Jacinta’s illness slowly worsened. After the bronchial pneumonia, pleurisy caused her great suffering. She bore it, however, with a resignation and even a joy which were surprising. Jacinta made it her business never to complain. This was both out of a delicate consideration for her mother, to keep her from getting worried, and to offer this additional sacrifice, so costly when one is suffering a great deal. From Lúcia alone she felt drawn to hide nothing, to tell her about all the graces she had received, and to admit her true sufferings: “My chest hurts so much, but I’m not saying anything to my mother. I want to suffer for Our Lord, in reparation for the sins committed against the Immaculate Heart of Mary, for the Holy Father and for the conversion of sinners.”

Sister Lúcia: “A few days after falling ill, she gave me the rope she had been wearing, and said: ‘Keep it for me; I’m afraid my mother may see it. If I get better, I want it back again!’ This cord had three knots and was somewhat stained with blood. I kept it hidden until I finally left my mother’s home. Then, not knowing what to do with it, I burned it, and Francisco’s as well.”

During June, 1919 Jacinta, increasingly challenged by more opportunities to offer sacrifices of reparation, increased in her fervent devotion, Father Ferreira stubbornly refused to allow Jacinta to receive the Blessed Sacrament, even though she was by then eight years old. But we may believe that the priest’s efforts were no obstacle to Our Lord’s love for His brave saint, as Frère Michel assures us that Our Lord “gave Himself to her spiritually, and gave her the grace to feel His Divine Presence: ‘I don’t know how it is! But I feel Our Lord within me. I understand what He says to me, although I neither see Him nor hear Him but it is so good to be with Him.’ ”

Another time she said: ‘I so like to tell Jesus that I love Him! Many times, when I say it to Him, I seem to have a fire in my heart, but it doesn’t burn me.’ Again, moved by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, the same ardent affections of love continually returned to her lips: ‘I love Our Lord and Our Lady so much, that I never get tired of telling Them that I love Them.’

Jacinta’s health gave way under the aggressive illnesses which beset her and towards the end of June, her doctor began to insist that her parents allow her to be admitted to Saint Augustine’s Hospital at Vila Nova de Ourem. The prophecy of Our Lady was about to be fulfilled… and so Jacinta departed, “knowing that she was going not to be cured, but to suffer”.

To be continued, God willing.

Designs of Mercy – Jacinta – Part II, 2019

 

Today we offer the second part of our earlier post. We need to learn from these good children, for Our Lady chose them to lead us, and our failure to follow is bringing very difficult times on the whole world and particularly in the Church as we watch the destruction grow week by week.

Part II

In our previous post on Saint Jacinta, we spoke of Our Lady’s visit to Saints Francisco and Jacinta Marto  in January, 1919. In her Memoirs, Lúcia tells us,

“Our Lady came to see us”, Jacinta said. “She told us She would come to take Francisco to Heaven very soon, and She asked me if I still wanted to convert more sinners. I said I did. She told me I would be going to a hospital where I would suffer a great deal; and that I am to suffer for the conversion of sinners, in reparation for the sins committed against the Immaculate Heart of Mary, and for love of Jesus. I asked if you (Lúcia) would go with me. She said you wouldn’t, and that is what I find hardest. She said my mother would take me, and then I would have to stay there all alone!”

In Volume II, Frère Michel de la Sainte Trinité speaks of Sister Lúcia’s impression of Jacinta:

Saint Jacinta Marto, pray for us, pray for the Pope.

“Jacinta was the one who received from Our Lady a greater abundance of grace, and a better knowledge of God and of virtue”

Although she was indeed the youngest of the three seers, it was she who appeared to enjoy the greatest intimacy with the Most Holy Virgin. When the cycle of the six great public apparitions was completed, Jacinta continued almost uninterruptedly to enjoy supernatural favors, right up until her death.

In our earlier post on Jacinta, we mentioned Frère Michel’s remark,

“It is indeed surprising to observe how much, after the apparition of July 13, the thought of the Holy Father kept constantly coming back to the minds of the three seers. This was one of their major preoccupations, along with solicitude for sinners, and the sight of the terrifying war to come. Why? Undoubtedly because the Pope plays a role of decisive importance in the great prophecy of the Secret: he is already named five times in the published part of the Secret; we may believe that he is mentioned again in the part which has not yet been published. Let us add that several supernatural communications Sister Lúcia was later favored with, concerning the role of the Holy Father in the great prophecy of the Secret, surely supply us with the context which sheds much light on the visions of Jacinta. “

In her memoirs, Lúcia recalled several prophetic visions given to little Jacinta.

“One day we spent our siesta down by my parents’ well. Jacinta sat on the stone slab on top of the well. Francisco and I climbed up a steep bank in search of wild honey among the brambles in a nearby thicket. After a little while, Jacinta called out to me: ‘Didn’t you see the Holy Father?’ ‘No.’

‘I don’t know how it was, but I saw the Holy Father in a very big house, kneeling by a table, with his head buried in his hands, and he was weeping. Outside the house, there were many people. Some of them were throwing stones, others were cursing him and using bad language. Poor Holy Father, we must pray much for him.’

“I have already told you how, one day, two priests recommended that we pray for the Holy Father, and explained to us who the Pope was. Afterwards, Jacinta asked me:  ‘Is he the one I saw weeping, the one Our Lady told us about in the Secret?’  ‘Yes, he is,’  I answered. (And Jacinta, with childlike candour, went on:) ‘The Lady must surely have shown him also to those priests. You see, I wasn’t mistaken. We need to pray a lot for him.’

Continue reading “Designs of Mercy – Jacinta – Part II, 2019”

July 13, 1917, the Third Visit, Part II

 

Part II

Previously, in The Third Visit, Part I, we discussed that the Message of Our Lady at Fatima on her third visit,  July 13, 1917 was a watershed moment. The previous apparitions, including the Angel’s visits, prepared for this one and this apparition is essential for understanding the subsequent ones. For it was on this day, as Lúcia relates, that ‘Our Lady deigned to reveal to us the Secret’. (“The Whole Secret of Fatima, Vol. 1, available free from www.archive.org.) The following are excerpts with commentary from that volume.
“So true is this that the message of July 13 appears to us very clearly divided into two parts:
First, there are the words which were divulged immediately,
Second, the long text of the secret which the seers carefully kept hidden. However, what is important is that the two parts of the message are very closely connected.”

In today’s post we will look at the text, or meaning, behind the bare words themselves.

From Frère Michel de la Trinité:

THE OBSESSIVE FEAR FOR THE SALVATION OF SOULS, which is the other key of the secret, with its terrible first part, the gripping vision of hell, was clearly manifested at the very moment of the apparition, inscribed on the faces of the seers. All the witnesses in fact noticed the great sorrow which suddenly overwhelmed them. Those who were very near were very much moved by the sudden cry which fell from the lips of Lúcia. ‘At this moment’, says Ti Marto, ‘Lúcia took a deep breath, went as pale as death, and we heard her cry out in terror to Our Lady, calling Her by name.’

“I have the happiness of suffering more for the love of You, O my God, and for the conversion of sinners.’

Is it not this same fright, distorting their faces, which is still visible on the photograph of the three seers taken by Mario Godinho, a few minutes after the apparition?

It was also on July 13 that Our Lady revealed the only two prayers She taught the children, the one just before the secret, to invite them to sacrifice, and the other right after, to complete each decade of the Rosary. These are two very brief formulas, which show once again the humility and also the great pedagogy of the Virgin Mary. They are almost ejaculatory prayers which can easily come unceasingly to our lips. They are two precious pearls which, in a few words, synthesize the whole essence of Her message…

AN URGENT SUPPLICATION FOR THE SALVATION OF SOULS.

Right after the end of the secret, Our Lady continued: ‘When you say the Rosary, say after each mystery:

‘O my Jesus, forgive us our sins, save us from the fire of hell; lead all souls to Heaven, especially those most in need.’

O MY JESUS

The two prayers taught by Our Lady are addressed to Her Son, to Jesus Christ our Savior. This alone suffices to destroy the calumnies of the reformists opposed to Fatima under the fallacious pretext that Her message is not Christocentric enough! What an error! At Fatima, Our Lady willed to add to the Rosary, the great prayer in Her honour this short invocation addressed to Jesus the Savior. Inserted between the Gloria Patri to the Holy Trinity, the Our Fathers and the Aves, which supplicate God our Father and our Blessed Mother in Heaven, this little prayer enlarges the divine horizon of our Rosary.

FORGIVE US!

The thought of our sin, this sin so profoundly rooted in us and which threatens to cause our ruin, is present everywhere in the message of Fatima. There is not one of the nine apparitions of the Angel and the most Blessed Virgin which does not make some allusion to sin. Each of the four prayers taught to us, brief as they are, all make some mention of it. This prayer, which is no exception, echoes the litany of Paters and Aves: Forgive us our trespasses (from the Our Father), and pray for us sinners (from the Hail Mary).

DELIVER US FROM THE FIRE OF HELL!

Continue reading “July 13, 1917, the Third Visit, Part II”

Francisco and Jacinta, Designs of Mercy III

Part III

“He knew exactly what his destiny was.” (Olimpia Marto)

Francisco’s vocation was he was to make a total oblation of his young life in reparation for sins, and to console the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary.

“You will get well, Francisco, you’ll be a robust man!” his father would say to him. … But the child would repeat, with assurance and serenity: “Before long Our Lady will come to take me.” His father would try furtively, to wipe away the tears from his eyes with the back of his calloused hands; those same eyes which were fatigued from so many sleepless nights. “Lights from on high!” he murmured.”

“If Our Lady heals you”, said his godmother Teresa, “I promise to offer Her your weight in wheat!” Francisco answered with a gentle smile. “Our Lady will not grant you this grace.”

Francisco was certain of going to Heaven soon, and being reunited with Our Lord and Our Lady. No doubt this filled our little seer with an immense supernatural joy. But we should not be mistaken: this joy was not always a palpable one, and the wonderful promise of Our Lady demanded on his part an act of heroic love, an act which is so contrary to nature, and consists in making the sacrifice of our own life. If there were moments of luminous joy and luminous hope, there were other moments when all feelings of joy disappeared: at those times he saw nothing but the sacrifices he had to accept to fulfill God’s designs.

Here is one such moving incident, which Ti Marto told Father de Marchi:

“I remember once that he went out and fetched a small basket of olives and then sat on a bench and began to cut them. “Francisco”,  I said,  “how nice to see you work; do you feel better?”  But he said nothing, looking a little sad. He clearly foresaw that, despite everything, he was going to die… “ He knew exactly what his destiny was”, Olimpia added.

Consoler of the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary

The constant thought and ideal of Francisco was always the same. He wanted to offer all his prayers and sufferings to console Our Lord and Our Lady. Lúcia tells us,

“When Jacinta and I went into (Francisco’s) room one day, he said to us: “Don’t talk much today, as my head aches so badly.”  “Don’t forget to make the offering for sinners”,  Jacinta reminded him. “Yes. But first I make it to console Our Lord and Our Lady, and then, afterwards, for sinners and for the Holy Father.”  He was quite conscious of the fact that his special role was that of consoler of the Holy Hearts of Jesus and Mary. This was to be his vocation here below and in eternity. For if he desired to go to Heaven, it was to be able to console Them that much better.

Francisco, who had a contemplative soul, was fascinated above all by the sadness of Jesus and Mary and to have compassion on Their pain, to console Them by his loving prayer. Jacinta also had a tender and affectionate heart, but seized with fright at the sight of so many souls falling into the fire of hell, she wished to make reparation in every possible way for their crimes, and obtain the grace of their conversion from the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

The Mercy in Suffering

So often today, even Catholics cannot quite grasp the significance of these children’s lives. It seems to them contradictory to assert a merciful design to suffering. This is because  we have all to some extent  been compromised by the spirit of the world (which belongs wholly to satan at the moment) which convinces us that anything that does not feel good, taste good or appeal to our senses cannot be good. To them, suffering is to be avoided at all costs. And yet Francisco and Jacinta embraced their crosses with fervor and total dedication.  How can one  explain this to today’s Catholics?

We must get past our distaste for the unpleasant truth because, in this time we are faced with a situation similar to that of the earliest disciples of Christ: they embraced the tortures, humiliations deprivations and brutal deaths because they knew the only way to Christ was through Golgotha. As then, so now, the faith is renewed only by suffering,

By our sufferings, we prove our love for Our Lord.

“Under the pressure of pain, I prove my love by test divine” sang St. Therese. By accepting the suffering offered us, we demonstrate with our actions and the resolve of our will that we are faithful, through all the suffering, loss and pain, faithful unto the end. We understand that we cannot endure these trials on our own, but only through His grace, and so these trials become a very fruitful exercise whereby we learn to live only in His light, in His sanctifying grace. Only in Him! Enduring our suffering for love of Him proves to us that on our own we are nothing, but in Him we live free and soar so high! As St. John of the Cross expressed so beautifully.

The sufferings we accept from the hands of Our Savior also  confirm us in His Love. They  have an essential role in detaching us from the things of this world and in focusing our aim higher than this passing, earthly life. Life and pain are short, eternity awaits us!

Ransom

And one of the best reasons is the salvation of souls! Jacinta, more than Francisco understood this. By ransoming souls, she was giving the greatest possible comfort to Our Lord Jesus Christ and to His Immaculate Mother. As the Angel assured them:

Make of everything you can a sacrifice, and offer it to God as an act of reparation for the sins by which He is offended, and in supplication for the conversion of sinners. You will thus draw down peace upon (your Church). I am its Angel Guardian … Above all, accept and bear with submission the suffering which the Lord will send you.

Thus, we see the designs of mercy, and we know a bit clearer our own portion in this.  As we pray Our Mother’s  Rosary, we ask her help in this great task before us. There are souls to be saved and heaven awaits!

Please pray the Rosary, for love of the Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary!

  Immaculate Heart of Mary, Queen of our hearts, Mother of the Church, do thou offer to the Eternal Father the Precious Blood of Our Lord Jesus Christ, for the conversion of poor sinners, especially our Pontiff.
  Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, Thy kingdom come! Viva Cristo Rey!
  Immaculate Heart of Mary, pray for us now and at the hour of our death.
  St. Joseph, protect us, protect our families, protect our priests.
  St. Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle.

Please pray for the Consecration of Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary!


Vouchsafe that I may praise thee, O Sacred Virgin! Give me strength against thine enemies!

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August 19, 1917: A break in the pattern

“I am of Heaven.”

The six apparitions of Our Lady of the Rosary at Fatima all occurred on the 13th of each month, except for the one in August. This was because the Administrator of the district of Ourem, a Mason, kidnapped the children, as we discussed in our earlier post, “The Day the Masons Promoted the Message of Fatima.”

Even though the little shepherds were unable to keep their assignation with Our Lady, between 3 and 5 thousand people did come. Here is a brief account:

First, there was a thunderclap, “then came the flash of lightning, and then we began to see a little cloud, very delicate, very white, which stopped for a few moments over the tree and then rose in the air and disappeared. As we looked around us, we noticed the strange thing which we had seen before and were to see in the following months; our faces were reflecting all the colours of the rainbow, pink, red, blue… The trees seemed to be made not of leaves but of flowers; they seemed to be laden with flowers, each leaf seemed to be a flower. The ground came out in colours and so did our clothes. The lanterns fixed to the arch looked like gold.”

At Valinhos

On Sunday, August 19, in the early afternoon, the children brought their flocks to a pasture in Valinhos. Lucia began to get the premonition that Our lady was about to appear, and since Jacinta was not with them, she sent Jacinta’s older brother to fetch her. It is an especially touching detail that Our Lady waited until Jacinta arrived before appearing.

In this visit, Our Lady again reiterated that she wanted them to continue coming to the Cova da Iria on the 13th of the month, and continue to pray the Rosary every day. “In the last month, I will work a miracle so that all may believe. If you had not been taken away to the City, the miracle would have been even greater. Saint Joseph will come with the Child Jesus, to give peace to the world. Our Lord will come to bless the people. Our Lady of the Rosary and Our Lady of Sorrows will also come.”

Then looking sad, Our Lady said:

“Pray, pray very much, and make sacrifices for sinners; for many souls go to hell because there are none to sacrifice themselves and pray for them.”

This message is such an important part of the Message of Fatima. In this, Our Lady repeats what she has said earlier, emphasising the urgency. We must take this to heart!

From Frère Michel:

“But what an astonishing affirmation! The eternal salvation of many souls really depends on our prayers and sacrifices? It is so stupefying that many theologians try to interpret in their own way these disturbing words, to diminish their significance.

“As for ourselves, let us be content to show how this doctrine is in perfect conformity with the purest Catholic tradition. Pope Pius XII firmly recalls this truth in Mystici Corporis:

There is an awesome mystery that we can never sufficiently meditate on: the salvation of many souls depends on the prayers and voluntary penances of the members of the Body of Christ. It is an unfathomable but also admirable mystery that such a close communion associates all the members of the human family with one another, for their salvation or for their loss.

An oracle of Deuteronomy already expresses this will of God in all its force: For I am the Lord thy God, a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon their children unto the third and fourth generation, to them that hate me, And shewing mercy unto many thousands, to them that love me, and keep my commandments. (Deut. 5, 9-10)

“Although the terrible part of this oracle was mitigated by the words of Ezekiel, who without denying family responsibility makes clear the role of individual responsibility, the second part, on the contrary, was reinforced by the message of the Gospel and the Pauline doctrine of the co-redemption:

‘Now I rejoice in my sufferings for your sake’, he writes to his dear Colossians, ‘and in my flesh I complete what is lacking of the sufferings of Christ for His body, which is the Church.’ (Col. 1:24)

And this co-redemptive power conferred by Christ on the members of His body in favor of their brothers, who are also redeemed has no other measure than unbounded Love and the infinite price of the Blood of Jesus, our only and beloved Saviour:

One just soul can obtain pardon for a thousand criminals, the Sacred Heart said to St. Margaret Mary.

“Rather than making unending calculations, vainly seeking to fathom the mysteries of divine predestination and human liberty, to reconcile the role of personal merit and the communion of saints, it is better to imitate the wisdom of the three little seers, who believed in all candor the words of Our Lady: Yes, many souls go to hell because they have no one to pray and make sacrifices for them. And they set themselves courageously to draw out all the consequences that flow from this fact.

The first consequence is that the opposite is also true: Many souls can go to Heaven, thanks to our prayers and sacrifices. Here is an immense field of the apostolate open to every generous soul. Who can say henceforth that his life is useless, ruined, sterile, when the most beautiful, the most useful and the only important supernatural work is proposed to everybody by Our Lady, and with what insistence! (From Frère Michel de la Sainte Trinité,  “The Whole Truth About Fatima, Volume III”.)

And so, in the seclusion of Valinhos, without the crowds, Our Blessed Mother patiently waited for little Jacinta, so that all three children could share this important message. They then heroically followed her requests perfectly, to:

“Pray, pray very much, and make sacrifices for sinners; for many souls go to hell because there are none to sacrifice themselves and pray for them.”

What a terrible scandal that these small children promptly obeyed and yet, after one hundred years, so few Catholics have actually obeyed Our Lady’s simple requests.  But doesn’t it always seem to be the way these things work? After centuries of prophecies, only a small handful of the Chosen People actually obeyed and followed Christ their Savior.  But look what those few  accomplished!

What a blessing to be here right now, with this opportunity to comfort Our Blessed Mother and Our Lord and make such a difference in the eternal lives of so many souls. The Church is being renewed right now, do not doubt it, for Our Lord does His best work when the devil thinks he is winning.

Think back over Our Lord’s Passion and Death for just a moment.  See how horribly He suffered and all the humiliation. See the utter hopelessness of it, by the world’s standards The tragic finality as Our Lady held  her Divine Son’s  body in her arms at the foot of the Cross.

And yet we know that this great tragedy was the means by which satan’s reign was  ended.  By this Death, we are born to eternal life, and by Satan’s attacks on  the Church now, he is being vanquished. Our Lord defeats Satan by His suffering obedience and  we shall do the same!  We are called not just to penance and prayer, but to joyful penance and prayer, and this joy comes from trust in Our Lady,  Indeed, from the very beginning of Sacred Scripture God has revealed the outcome, ” She shall crush thy head and thou shalt lie in wait for her heel.”

So pray the Rosary with joy and confidence!

  Immaculate Heart of Mary, Queen of our hearts, Mother of the Church, do thou offer to the Eternal Father the Precious Blood of Our Lord Jesus Christ, for the conversion of poor sinners, especially our Pontiff.
  Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, Thy kingdom come! Viva Cristo Rey!
  Immaculate Heart of Mary, pray for us now and at the hour of our death.
  St. Joseph, protect us, protect our families, protect our priests.
  St. Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle.

Please pray for the Consecration of Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary!

~ by evensong, for love of the Immaculate Heart of Mary and the Sacred Heart of Jesus Christ, King..
Vouchsafe that I may praise thee, O Sacred Virgin, give me strength against thine enemies!

© All Content Copyright 2013-2017 ReturntoFatima.org. All Rights Reserved.

 

Designs of Mercy – Jacinta II

Part II

In our previous post on Saint Jacinta, Designs of Mercy – Jacinta, we spoke of Our Lady’s visit to Saints Francisco and Jacinta Marto  in January, 1919. In her Memoirs, Lùcia tells us,

“Our Lady came to see us”, Jacinta said. “She told us She would come to take Francisco to Heaven very soon, and She asked me if I still wanted to convert more sinners. I said I did. She told me I would be going to a hospital where I would suffer a great deal; and that I am to suffer for the conversion of sinners, in reparation for the sins committed against the Immaculate Heart of Mary, and for love of Jesus. I asked if you (Lùcia) would go with me. She said you wouldn’t, and that is what I find hardest. She said my mother would take me, and then I would have to stay there all alone!”

In Volume II, Frère Michel de la Sainte Trinité speaks of Sister Lùcia’s impression of Jacinta:

Saint Jacinta Marto, pray for us, pray for the Pope.

“Jacinta was the one who received from Our Lady a greater abundance of grace, and a better knowledge of God and of virtue”

Although she was indeed the youngest of the three seers, it was she who appeared to enjoy the greatest intimacy with the Most Holy Virgin. When the cycle of the six great public apparitions was completed, Jacinta continued almost uninterruptedly to enjoy supernatural favors, right up until her death.

In our earlier post on Jacinta, we mentioned Frère Michel’s remark,

“It is indeed surprising to observe how much, after the apparition of July 13, the thought of the Holy Father kept constantly coming back to the minds of the three seers. This was one of their major preoccupations, along with solicitude for sinners, and the sight of the terrifying war to come. Why? Undoubtedly because the Pope plays a role of decisive importance in the great prophecy of the Secret: he is already named five times in the published part of the Secret; we may believe that he is mentioned again in the part which has not yet been published. Let us add that several supernatural communications Sister Lùcia was later favored with, concerning the role of the Holy Father in the great prophecy of the Secret, surely supply us with the context which sheds much light on the visions of Jacinta. “

In her memoirs, Lùcia recalled several prophetic visions given to little Jacinta.

“One day we spent our siesta down by my parents’ well. Jacinta sat on the stone slab on top of the well. Francisco and I climbed up a steep bank in search of wild honey among the brambles in a nearby thicket. After a little while, Jacinta called out to me: ‘Didn’t you see the Holy Father?’ ‘No.’

‘I don’t know how it was, but I saw the Holy Father in a very big house, kneeling by a table, with his head buried in his hands, and he was weeping. Outside the house, there were many people. Some of them were throwing stones, others were cursing him and using bad language. Poor Holy Father, we must pray much for him.’

“I have already told you how, one day, two priests recommended that we pray for the Holy Father, and explained to us who the Pope was. Afterwards, Jacinta asked me:  ‘Is he the one I saw weeping, the one Our Lady told us about in the Secret?’  ‘Yes, he is,’  I answered. (And Jacinta, with childlike candour, went on:) ‘The Lady must surely have shown him also to those priests. You see, I wasn’t mistaken. We need to pray a lot for him.’

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Designs of Mercy – Jacinta

“Pray, pray much and make sacrifices for sinners, for many souls go to hell because they have no one to pray and make sacrifices for them!”

by evensong, May 27, 2017

Although Francisco, who was a contemplative soul, recognised that  his essential task was to console Our Lord in the most Blessed Sacrament, Jacinta knew that  she must above all else, sacrifice to save souls from the eternal damnation she had seen so graphically depicted. In her memoirs, Lúcia tells us,

“Some of the things revealed in the Secret made a very strong impression on Jacinta. … How is it that Jacinta, small as she was, let herself be possessed by such a spirit of penance and mortification, and understood it so well? I think the reason is this: firstly, God willed to bestow on her a special grace, through the Immaculate Heart of Mary; and secondly, it was because she had looked upon hell, and had seen the ruin of souls who fall therein. … Jacinta  took this matter of making sacrifices for the conversion of sinners so much to heart, that she never let a single opportunity escape her.”

“Poor Holy Father! We must pray much for him!”

“We were playing one day at the well I have already mentioned. Close to it, there was a grape vine belonging to Jacinta’s mother. She cut a few clusters and brought them to us to eat. But Jacinta never forgot her sinners. ‘We won’t eat them,’ she said, ‘we’ll offer this sacrifice for sinners.’  Then she ran out with the grapes and gave them to the other children playing on the road. She returned radiant with joy, for she had found our poor children, and given them grapes. … Another time, my aunt called us to come and eat some figs which she had brought home, and indeed they would have given anybody an appetite. Jacinta sat down happily next to the basket, with the rest of us, and picked up the first fig. She was just about to eat it, when she suddenly remembered, and said:  ‘It’s true! Today we haven’t yet made a single sacrifice for sinners! We’ll have to make this one.’  She put the fig back in the basket, and made the offering; and we, too, left our figs in the basket for the conversion of sinners.

“I’m not going to dance any more!”

“Jacinta dearly loved dancing, and had a special aptitude for it. I remember how she was crying one day about one of her brothers who had gone to the war and was reported killed in action. To distract her, I arranged a little dance with two of her brothers. There was the poor child dancing away as she dried the tears that ran down her cheeks.  Her fondness for dancing was such that the sound of some shepherd playing his instrument was enough to set her dancing all by herself.  In spite of this, when St. John’s Day festivities or carnival time came around (in 1918), she announced: ‘I’m not going to dance any more.’ ‘And why not?’ ‘Because I want to offer this sacrifice to Our Lord.’ Since we were the ones who organized the games for the children, the dances which used to take place on these occasions stopped.”

“Occasionally, also, we were in the habit of offering to God the sacrifice of spending nine days or a month without taking a drink. Once, we made this sacrifice even in the month of August, when the heat was suffocating. On these occasions, Jacinta would say: ‘Our Lord must be pleased with our sacrifices, because I am so thirsty, so thirsty! Yet, I do not want to take a drink. I want to suffer for love of Him.”  Jacinta’s thirst for making sacrifices seemed insatiable.

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Francisco and Jacinta – Designs of Mercy

 

“The Hearts of Jesus and Mary have designs of mercy on you.”

Saints Jacinta and Francisco Marto of Fatima

Today, we consider Francisco and Jacinta, the two youngest saints of Fatima. As we discussed in our earlier post, “The Promise”,

Francisco saw the Blessed Virgin perfectly, but did not hear Her words. He only understood the questions of Lúcia. As for Jacinta, who saw and heard everything, she never brought herself to speak to the apparition. Thus Lúcia was the only one to have the privilege of speaking with Her.” … “Young and quite small, the Queen of Heaven also came very close to (the) three children. For a pedestal She had chosen a little holm oak, about a metre high.  ‘We were so close’, writes Lúcia , ‘that we found ourselves in the light surrounding Her, or rather emanating from Her, about a metre and a half away, more or less.’ (from Sister Lúcia’s Fourth Memoir)

In 1916, St. Michael the Archangel, the Angel of Fatima had told the children, “The Hearts of Jesus and Mary have designs of mercy on you”, but it was not until Our Lady began to appear that they perceived the true meaning of “designs of mercy”.  By the time of Our Lady’s third visit,  July 13, 1917, it was becoming clearer, and by then, Francisco could say emphatically, “What I want is to go to Heaven!” This eagerness for Heaven recalls St. Bernadette of Lourdes, who said of Our Lady,  “She was so beautiful that after seeing Her once one would be willing to die to see Her again!”

That Great Light Which Is God

Although Francisco was never able to hear the words of Our Lady, he was very astute in recognising many essential aspects of the apparitions:

“He was very impressed by the reflection of light… At the time, he did not seem to understand what was happening, perhaps because it was not given to him to hear the accompanying words of Our Lady. For this reason, he asked later: ‘Why did Our Lady have a heart in Her hand, spreading out all over the world that great light which is God?’

“Sometimes he said: ‘These people are so happy just because you told them that Our Lady wants the Rosary said, and that you are to learn to read! How would they feel if they only knew what She showed to us in God, in Her Immaculate Heart, in that great light.’ ” (Lúcia per Frère Michel, The Whole Truth About Fatima, Vol I)

And so we know that Francisco understood that the great light which the Blessed Virgin poured forth on them was the Light of God, that is, was God, as Francisco expressed it. This alone should give us great comfort for by this we understand that our Eternal Father has granted to the Blessed Virgin to bring us also to this Light in time of darkness.

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