Join Autom today, May 13th, as the Catholic Church celebrates the feast of Our Lady of Fatima. Here is the story:
On May 13th, 1917, the Blessed Virgin Mary appeared to three little shepherds in the village of Fatima, Portugal. Seven-year old Jacinta, her nine-year-old brother Francisco, and their ten-year-old cousin Lucia were tending their sheep in a field called the Cova da Iria. Suddenly they saw a bright flash of light. A beautiful lady, dressed in white and gold, appeared on a cloud over a small oak tree. A golden cord hung around her neck. Her hands were joined in prayer and she held a pearl rosary.
The Lady told the children that she was Mary, the Mother of Jesus. She said she had been sent by God with a message for every man, woman and child in our century. Coming at a time when civilization was torn asunder by the untold violence of World War I, Mary promised that Heaven would grant peace to the entire world if her requests for prayer, reparation, and consecration were heard and obeyed.
Mary explained that war is a punishment for sin. She warned that if people continued to disobey God’s Will, they would suffer consequences of war, hunger, and persecution of the Church. She also prophesied that Russia would “spread her errors” of atheism and materialism across the earth. Our Lady of Fatima repeatedly emphasized the necessity of praying daily, especially the Rosary, of wearing the Brown Scapular, and of performing acts of reparation and sacrifice. She also promised a sign on October 13th as proof of her messages.
A heavy rain fell all night and into the morning as a great crowd of more than 70,000 people gathered at the Cova on October 13th, 1917. The Lady appeared to the children for the last time, more radiant than ever. “Her face was brighter than the sun,” said Francisco. “I am the Lady of the Rosary,” the Virgin Mary said. “I have come to warn the faithful to amend their lives and ask pardon for their sins. They must not continue to offend Our Lord, who has been so deeply offended. They must pray, especially the rosary.” She said that if people amended their lives, the war would end soon. She then left the children, raising her hands toward the sky.
Someone cried, “Look at the sun!” The children looked up and saw Mother Mary with Saint Joseph and the Infant Jesus. They saw Jesus blessing the people. Meanwhile, the people were able to look at the sun without hurting their eyes. It appeared as a silver disc, and began spinning in the sky. As it danced, it cast off great shafts of colored light which flashed and fell upon the sky and the earth. Men and women fell to their knees and prayed as brilliant colors fell on the trees and stones. Suddenly, the sun began to zigzag! It started to fall like a wheel of fire upon the people. They cried out in fear and asked Jesus and Mary to save them. After a few moments, the sun returned to its place. The people rejoiced and praised God for the “Miracle of the Sun.”
On May 13, 1981, Pope John Paul II was shot in the chest and in the abdomen at point blank range in St. Peter’s Square. He credited his miraculous escape from death to the intervention of Our Lady of Fatima. One year later he traveled to Fatima, and placed the bullet in the crown resting upon the statue of Mary there. He said, “One finger fired the bullet, but another guided its path.”
Less than 7 years later, the Berlin Wall fell without a bullet being fired, and Communism collapsed across the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe.
Our Lady of Fatima, pray for us.