About the Holy Father’s upcoming visit to Fatima

I have interested in the Fatima apparitions for quite some time… in particular in the controversy concerning the "Third Secret" given by Our Lady to Sr. Lucia.

FatimaFor some background on the controversy you might check out Antonio Socci‘s book, translated now into English.  Marco Tossati also has a good book in Italian.

This is from CNA:

Pope Benedict to deliver ‘intense’ message during Fatima visit

Vatican City, May 5, 2010 / 12:20 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- "Fatima is a particularly significant place for this Pope," said Vatican spokesman Fr. Federico Lombardi on Tuesday, noting that it was also a destination for two former Popes. The Holy Father has a thorough knowledge of the history of the Marian sanctuary, he added. [And the Holy Father has known the content of the "Third Secret" for a very long time.]

Fr. Lombardi held a press conference at the Vatican to prepare the media for the Pope’s next trip out of the Vatican. He will be visiting Portugal from May 11-14.

The spokesman referred to the Pope’s stop in Fatima on May 13 as the highlight and "heart" of the upcoming four-day trip to Portugal, according to Vatican Radio. But, he pointed out, Benedict XVI will not be the first Pope to visit the Marian shrine.  [The things he tells us!]

Two other Pontiffs have been to Fatima. In 1967, the sanctuary hosted Paul VI, and John Paul II visited in 1982, 1991 and 2000, at which time the visionaries Jacinta and Francesco were beatified.

The Portuguese shrine is not unfamiliar to Pope Benedict, since as head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, then-Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger extensively studied the message of Fatima. Fr. Lombardi said on Tuesday that the Pope has been involved with history of the Marian sanctuary in a "very deep, personal way."

It was him, for example, who was called upon to give a theological perspective when the third secret of Fatima was made public in 2000[Or… at the least… part of the Third Secret!]

[NB:] The Vatican spokesman said that the Holy Father will also deliver an intense message ["an intense message"] during his Fatima visit. Upon his arrival at the sanctuary on May 12, he will remember John Paul II and the 29th anniversary of the assassination attempt that nearly took his life on May 13, 1981.

[…]

 

Fr. Lombadi has certainly put an edge to my interest by this whetting.  

In the meantime, I would love someday to see an image of Our Lady of Fatima that doesn’t involve pastels.

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87 Responses to About the Holy Father’s upcoming visit to Fatima

  1. doanli says:

    I’m so confused about the Third Secret, I’m confused about whether the Blessed Mother’s instructions about Masses being offered for the Consecration of Russia actually being carried out, etc….

    But I am not confused about, and I 100% believe that She did appear to those shepherd children. :)

  2. doanli says:

    But I am definitely leaning towards the entire Secret not being entirely revealed…just looked at all of the disaster(s) since the 1960s; She did want the Secret revealed in 1960!

  3. torch621 says:

    Sister Lucia reported that Our Lady has said her instructions have been carried, if memory serves me. I tend to take her word over anyone else’s.

  4. Deo volente says:

    Father, this may be unfair but how do you parse the word intense in “Vaticanese? Is this “intense” as in shocking and frank, or intense as deeply religious and leading to profound meditation? And, do you think that only part of the message was released?

  5. catholicmidwest says:

    Part.

    Perhaps. But that’s not what people have been led to believe. I’m not sure about this whole matter at all. It’s confusing.

  6. catholicmidwest says:

    I’m also not alone in thinking that the idea that the third secret pertained specifically and only to the assassination attempt on PJP2 is odd. It just doesn’t make sense.

    Luckily, Fatima isn’t a doctrine of the church, and one doesn’t have to put much stock in it to believe as the church believes.

    There are a lot of scenarios-a whole lot of scenarios-around this matter, and pretty much none of them are good.

  7. Randii says:

    The 05/10 NOR has an excellent review of Socci’s book by Fr. Anderson. I checked NOR’s site and the review isn’t up yet.

    According to the review, Socci contends the consecrations were not carried out as asked and Socci ties that into the Vatican’s Ostipolitik initiative dating back Pius XII. Socci questions the accuracy of Cardinal Bertone’s claims re: Sr. Lucia.

    Bottom line, Socci is quite skeptical as to whether the 3rd secret has been revealed.

  8. Randii says:

    To catholicmidwest’s comment:

    I’m also not alone in thinking that the idea that the third secret pertained specifically and only to the assassination attempt on PJP2 is odd. It just doesn’t make sense.

    This is what Socci asks about the assertion the vision pertained to the assasination attempt:

    “Is it possible that a message kept hidden for so long, and with such care, refers to an event that had already happened? Why then wait almost 20 years to communicate its contents? Who really is the bishop dressed in white? What of that long silence and that isolation imposed on Sister Lucia starting in 1960 until her death in 2005? And how does one explain certain of her words?”

  9. catholicmidwest says:

    Either way, Randii, it’s not going to make much difference to me because I’m not an apparitions kind of gal, and belief in apparitions isn’t part of the deposit of faith. It’s just a bit of an interesting puzzle, as all secrets are.

    Even if it does contain all the stuff one sometimes hears about in its regard, the answer is still faith, prayer and living like a Catholic….. That doesn’t change.

  10. rollim says:

    Along with Socci’s book, you can check Fr. Kramer’s book “The Devil’s Final Battle”, available here (full content): http://www.devilsfinalbattle.com/content.htm, that addresses the issue.

  11. rollim says:

    Sorry, I meant “almost” full content on the post above.

  12. Brian K says:

    “As for the Secret, well I happen to be one of those individuals who thinks we didn’t get the whole thing.”

    –Mother Angelica, on her live television show May 16, 2001

  13. ipadre says:

    Just finished reading the 4th Secret. Very interesting. It has changed my view of what was made known.

  14. doanli says:

    jpadre,

    Is it on the internet? If so, do you happen to have a link? I had no idea there was a 4th Secret.

  15. Sr. Lucia said that it was she, not the Blessed Mother, who asked that the secret not be revealed before 1960, because she had the intuition that it would not make sense before 1960. But that’s not the same as to say that the secret HAD to be revealed in 1960.

  16. torch621 says:

    Sister Lucia herself has confirmed that the consecration was carried out.

  17. mfranks says:

    Torch621 comments: “Sister Lucia herself has confirmed that the consecration was carried out.” Isn’t it entirely plausible that she was coerced into making such a comment by superiors?

    Regardless of the truth in the matter, I’m with Catholicmidwest on this one.

  18. Re The Devil’s Final Battle: following the link provided above, I see that some of the chapters of this book are posted online. And in Chapter 10, we find then-Cardinal Ratzinger listed as one of four men “who have taken the lead in attempting nothing less than the murder of the Message of Fatima, and with it the Heaven-sent hope of the world in our time.” Gigantic red flag.

  19. The dogma of the Co-Redemptrix would be a very nice intense surprise.

  20. catholicmidwest says:

    I’m pretty sure it’s not going to be that, Fr. Marie-Paul.

  21. doanli says:

    I am upset because the Secret was not revealed when it was asked to do so, by whoever requested 1960, so now and hence all of this confusion amongst the Faithful!!!!! Ugh!

    I was born in 1964, so can someone be kind enough to tell me why Vatican 2 was even done? No disrespect, just genuine interest and curiosity.

  22. doanli says:

    If the Pope wanted to murder the message of Fatima, he doesn’t have to go there on May 13th, he could have ignored it and not announced an “intense” message. He could have left it, and the so called entirety of the Third Secret, as a footnote in Catholic History.

  23. If you’re going to believe that Sr. Lucia’s comments about the consecration were coerced by superiors, you may as well believe that the whole thing was the product of coercion. Honestly, people, that’s just paranoid.

    Re: the prophecies, you’re always welcome to believe that there’s more meaning in a prophecy than one.

    Re: the Third Secret, I’m really tired of hearing people speculate about it. At this point, if the Vatican released an entire book’s worth of Third Secret, somebody would claim that there were 14 encyclopedia sized volumes being suppressed. Frankly, I think we’ve got it all, and that any suggestions to the contrary were derived from faulty memory, mixing other visions in with it.

  24. Irish says:

    I have an idea about the consecration of Russia:
    For years we Catholics have thought about this as something we must do to or for the people of Russia in order to fulfill Our Lady’s request at Fatima. Whether it was done and done correctly has been a point of furious debate. We did it. We didn’t quite do because we didn’t want to disturb the Russian Orthodox. We consecrated the world, but not Russia specifically. Pope John Paul II consecrated the world, but not simultaneously with all the bishops.

    I think it’s doable, now more than ever. And maybe more necessary now than ever before. It seems like the Vatican’s relationship with the Russian Orthodox church has thawed significantly. I think the Russian people, and some Russian politicians, understand how critical Christianity is to their survival as a country. Getting all the RC bishops on board with this might still be problematic, but what if we enlisted the help of the Russian Orthodox hierarchy in this? Instead of this being a thing we do to or for them, what if we do it with them? We consecrate Russia to Our Lady’s Immaculate Heart in our Roman rite in Rome and participating dioceses, while the Russian Orthodox have their own simultaneous consecration ceremony in an Orthodox rite in Russia. What country wouldn’t want to be consecrated to the Blessed Virgin Mary?

    Just a thought.

  25. catholicmidwest says:

    Nobody else has figured that out definitively either, doanli. It was unlike any other council in history. According to the opening address by none other than Pope John XXIII:

    “The substance of the ancient doctrine of the deposit of faith is one thing, and the way in which it is presented is another. And it is the latter that must be taken into great consideration with patience if necessary, everything being measured in the forms and proportions of a Magisterium which is predominantly pastoral in character.”

    One wonders how it would been thought possible to divorce the doctrine and the delivery in such a way, in a real world with real people, without violating Lex Orandi, Lex Credendi. There are optimists in this world, and Pope John XXIII must have been a great one.

  26. doanli says:

    Irish,

    I think that is a wonderful idea. I wonder if the Holy Father has indeed already thought of it?

  27. torch621 says:

    Whatever happens on this trip, my Our Lady of Fatima’s intercession protect His Holiness

  28. DisturbedMary says:

    Ratzinger, Bertone, Third secret, Akita, punishments, devotion to Our Blessed Mother, the rosary…. there is much here about Fatima which I just discovered about two months ago. I have been anxiously (in all meanings of the word) awaiting Pope Benedict’s visit.

    Worth looking at

    http://fatimaondemand.org/en/index.php/special-productions/the-secret-still-silenced

    http://www.fatima.org

    We must listen to Our Lady’s wishes to pray the rosary.

  29. doanli says:

    I wonder if listening to the Rosary would confer some graces?

    I usually don’t have the time to say it, but I must confess I am an anxious, hyper person, and cannot sit still long enough, nor able to concentrate long enough, to say one.

    Praying that I will develop a devotion to it (like I am getting to know our Blessed Mother. :) )

  30. JonM says:

    Just a couple pennies to throw in here…

    @ Anita,

    I think then Cardinal Ratzinger was torn between two approaches. His writings indicate almost two minds on the Message of Fatima. He did afterall approve as worthy of belief Mary’s appearance at Akita, which is pretty apocalyptic.

    We have to tease out his writings and statements prior to being Pope and his papal teachings.

    @MidwestCatholic,

    It’s true that private revelation is not binding on us, however it is not so simple a case as waving off approved revelations as optional. The circumstances are more nuanced than that. If the Church approves a message, then it happened. However, details and aspects of it might be imperfect because of errors on the part of the recipient.

    Much of everyday Church culture is a result of private revelations. The Rosary for instance is one, and it factored greatly in the Battle of Lepanto. Fervent prayer of the Rosary is credited with victory against the seemingly unstoppable Turks and their aims to concquer Italy. So we can pretty confidently say that private revelation has been critical.

    As Cardinal Arinze has stated, the trouble begins when people begin believing only for signs sake or think that one must have a personal revelation from Mary or Christ in order to be in a state of grace. It is pretty easy to spot these unfortunate situations (Bayside) and then sometimes for many it is not so easy to spot (Medjugorjie.)

    It’s pretty tough to misuse private revelation. For example, it’s hard to imagine how it is possible to ignore or slight the Four Gospels in order to ‘favor’ the Message of Fatima.

  31. AnAmericanMother says:

    doanli,

    I am one of those “can’t sit still” people too.

    I’ve found that keeping a Rosary on my gearshift lever and praying the Rosary while I’m driving is a good time, because I HAVE to sit still while driving, and it takes me just exactly five decades to drive from home to work . . . . As a bonus it keeps me from swearing at the other drivers!

  32. torch621 says:

    All this speculation is giving me a headache. I think I’ll sit this one out from now on.

    Father, I apologize if any of my posts sounded uncharitable.

  33. GOR says:

    AnAmericanMother: Exactly! I have done the same for years, meaning the radio in my car gets little use! Unfortunately it hasn’t stopped me swearing at other drivers, yet…

  34. Johnny Domer says:

    I find the controversy surrounding the Third Secret of Fatima to be somewhat annoying to me, personally. A lot of people who talk about this Third secret argue whether JP2 or John XXIII or Paul VI or Benedict “fulfilled Mary’s commands,” and they’ll accuse Cardinal Sodano or Bertone of lying or something…

    I could hardly care less about these controversies. What sort of stuff will the third secret contain that will truly rock my world? It’s PRIVATE REVELATION. I could go my whole life without ever knowing that Mary showed up at Fatima and I could still be a good Catholic and go to heaven. It’s not like knowing the Third Secret is gonna give me a super-huge leg-up. I also doubt it’s going to be something like “the date of the end of the world,” or “the identity of the coming anti-Christ” or “the secret to William Shatner’s awesomeness” or something of that magnitude. Heck, it could have been a prediction of an event that already occurred. I mean, if Mary accurately prophecies something that happened or something about to happen, then yes that’s great–but it’s not going to make me think Mary’s more amazing than I already think she is, and it’s not going to make me think that her main Fatima message wasn’t pretty awesome already. And it’s not going to give me a new insight into how I should live my life; I know my catechism, and I know how I ought to live, even if I don’t always avoid sin.

    In short, I feel like people would be better off expending their energy learning more about/meditating more on PUBLIC REVELATION. Private revelation can be nice, uplifting, spiritually beneficial (even powerfully so), but I don’t think it’s worth arguing over in such a petty, rash way as many individuals do. Public revelation is far more important.

  35. Geoffrey says:

    Considering how devoted Venerable Pope John Paul the Great was to the message of Fatima, I doubt there are any “hidden secrets” or consecrations left undone or things of that nature. When he realized he had been shot on 13 May, he personally reviewed all of the documents relating to Fatima, including the “Third Secret”, and saw Our Lady’s hand in his survival. He put the feast of Our Lady of Fatima on the General Roman Calendar, and released the “Third Secret” in 2000.

    In 2006, Renzo Allegri authored a book entitled “Il Papa di Fatima” (The Fatima Pope). Here is a link to a Zenit news article about it: http://www.zenit.org/article-16013?l=english.

  36. Mark of the Vine says:

    God willing, I’ll be there next week. This’ll be my first time seeing a Pope IRL. I have grown quite fond of HH BXVI. :-)

  37. I think the the heart of the Fatima message is being lost amidst these scandal theories involving the “Fourth Secret”.

    Am I to assume that Cardinal Bertone lied to the world?

    Am I to assume that Cardinal Capovilla lied to the world?

    Antonio Socci is also one of Italy’s greatest Medjugorje promoters. As a real skeptic of Medjugorje apparitions, I take anything he has to say about any apparition with a grain of salt.

    I have a problem with apparition claims, or claims made about authentic apparitions begin to cause division in the Church. The discussions surrounding the purported “Fourth Secret” have caused nothing but division.

  38. JonM says:

    @ Johnny Domer,

    Technically yes, you could ignore private revelation and still be able to receive God’s grace.

    Practically, it is hard for me to imagine successfully doing so without the Rosary frequently and special devotions from time to time.

    Our Lady of Guadalupe led to the most rapid conversions ever. Sr. Menendez’s diary has helped illustrate the importance of Adoration. Important indulgences are a direct result of private revelation (such as Divine Mercy.)

    The world is not static and so with new problems or questions about doctrine, God is gracious to periodically give new spiritual weapons.

    As I wrote in the first post, private revelation always supports and buttresses public revelation.

  39. prsuth33 says:

    Sr. Lucia was given explicit instructions by her bishop to write the contents of the third secret on paper. The Virgin Mary appeared to Sr. Lucia confirming that it was God’s will that it be done. However, Sr. Lucia could not–I repeat–could not write the contents for over two months. The Virgin had to appear to her specifically to help her in this regard. Now, remember, Sr. Lucia saw a vision of Hell. She said she would have died had she not known that she was already going to Heaven. However, she had no problem writing down the contents of that vision ALONG WITH THE WORDS DESCRIBING THE VISION GIVEN BY THE VIRGIN MARY. Now, are you going to tell me that that secret, which Sr. Lucia could not write due to its graphic nature, was the assassination attempt of Pope John Paul II? I ain’t the sharpest knife in the drawer but something isn’t adding up here.

    The following is information I have copied from another site and it is self-explanatory:

    First of all, we know that in 1952 Father Schweigl was sent by Pius XII to interview Sister Lucy about the Secret. After this interview, Father Schweigl told Frere Michel, in a letter to him, that the Secret “has two parts: one concerns the Pope. The other, logically—-although I must say nothing—-would have to be the continuation of those words ‘In Fatima the dogma of the faith will always be preserved.’” That is just one of many pieces of evidence.

    The 1960 press release announcing that the Third Secret would not be revealed in that year states that “it is most likely that the letter will never be opened, in which Sister Lucy wrote down the words that Our Lady confided as a secret to the three little shepherds.” The same press release states that one of the reasons given by the unnamed “very reliable Vatican circles” for suppressing the Secret is that “the Church … does not pledge herself to guarantee the veracity of the words which the three little shepherds claim to have heard from Our Lady.” The Vatican never contradicted this press release, which was circulated to the entire world. Now, the text of the Third Secret vision published on June 26, as I have noted, does not contain any words spoken by Our Lady, but only the vision. Where are these “words which Our Lady confided as a secret,” referred to in the 1960 press release?

  40. Elly says:

    Catholicmidwest- can you explain what scenarios you are reffering to by

    “There are a lot of scenarios-a whole lot of scenarios-around this matter, and pretty much none of them are good” ?

    Thanks,
    Elly

  41. mpm says:

    I agree with others who find these controversies oppressive and distracting. I’ve been aware of the Fatima events since I was a pre-teen, and my clearest take-away is that we are asked to do “Penance! penance! penance!” (in the Angel’s words) for ourselves and other poor sinners. I cannot control what Popes and cardinals do, but I can pray the rosary and do penance, even physical penance like the children did — Our Lady did not tell them ‘No, we don’t do that anymore’, she told them ‘don’t wear those [tight] belts when you go to bed’ — for “poor sinners” (including myself).

    I am even more interested to hear what the Holy Father wants to tell us at Fatima, after reading the following from the 50th anniversary Mass homily of Pope Paul VI:

    Our first intention is the Church: One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic. (…) The Council awakened many new energies in the heart of the Church; it opened up more perspectives in her teaching, and called all her children to clearer awareness, closer cooperation, and more active apostolate. It is our deep desire that these great benefits and this profound renewal should be preserved and developed. What damage would be done, if an arbitrary interpretation, not authorized by the Magisterium of the Church, diverted that awakening to concerns divorced from her traditional and constitutional form, and replaced the theology of the truly great teachers of the faith with private, passing ideologies, that aimed to remove from the norm of faith everything that modern thinking, often devoid of the true light of reason, does not understand or appreciate, and were to alter the apostolic desires of redemptive charity into an acquiescence with the negative forms of a profane mentality and worldly morals! [Paul VI, Homily at Mass at Fatima, May 13, 1967]

    No, there was no internet in those days, Virginia!

  42. Ellen says:

    Honestly, I don’t get all het up about Marian prophesies. I honor her and pray to her every day, but some of the Marianists are too odd for me. They remind me of fundmentalists who zealously comb through the Bible for End Times clues.

    As for art – my favorite depictions of Our Lady are the Our Lady of Perpetual Help icon (the original, not the one that’s been sweetened up) and Our Lady of Guadaloupe.

  43. GregH says:

    Ellen,

    I agree. I find this 3rd secret speculation a huge waste of time.

  44. chironomo says:

    It’s a more than curious aspect of human nature that we are bored and dismissive of things that we know to be fact, and yet we are intrigued and compelled to have our lives shaped by those things that we don’t or can’t ever know…but I guess that’s why they call it “Faith”.

  45. Andrew says:

    Fr Z.

    By your comment in red “or at least part of the Third Secret” might this be giving support to the likes of Fr Gruner (who was suspended a divinis by the Congregation for the Clergy for disobedience), Antonio Socci, Chris Ferrara, John Vennari and others who say the third Secret hasn’t been fully revealed?

    That position seems to me to be at variance with the position outlined by the Magisterium of the Church in the CDF (which was then headed by Cardinal Ratzinger) document entitled “The Message of Fatima, which came out in 2000.

    In the theological commentary written by Cardinal Ratzinger; he opens this up by saying, “A careful reading of the text of the so-called third “secret” of Fatima, published here in its entirety long after the fact and by decision of the Holy Father, will probably prove disappointing or surprising after all the speculation it has stirred. No great mystery is revealed; nor is the future unveiled.”

    To me it is the height of arrogance to say that this man who was elected the Vicar of Christ a few years later, was lying, as these interlocutors seem to imply.

  46. Henry Edwards says:

    It looks like this is my excuse this year for posting once again (and the day following the EF feast of Pius V) a link to a 2004 fictional account of an “intense” announcement at Fatima by John Paul II’s successor:

    I Had A Dream
    http://www.christianorder.com/features/features_2004/features_feb04.html
    “Then in an announcement which stunned the congregation, the new Pope announced that the “prolonged experiment” of the “Novus Ordo” Mass would be rapidly phased out and although, as his predecessors had pointed out, it is a valid Mass, he had no doubt that the great sacramental gifts of the Tridentine Mass, the “Mass for all times” formulated by St Pius V, would soon once again be embraced universally. “

    Not that I myself think that this is even remotely what Pope Benedict will do, should do, or indeed could do even if he wanted to, now or ever at Fatima or anywhere else.

    But it’s fun to dream (isn’t it?) of a chance to go back to the wrong fork in the road and start over at the point when the new liturgical springtime envisioned at Vatican II was hijacked.

  47. Monica says:

    Just a note about the idea of consecrating Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary in conjunction with Eastern Orthodox patriarchs. I would love to see this too, but the Eastern Orthodox do not hold the Immaculate Conception as an article of faith.
    Thus a consecration to her Immaculate Heart would be theologically problematic for the Eastern Orthodox.

  48. irishgirl says:

    I’ve been to Fatima four times, all in the 1980s. I’ve been interested in it since I was in my pre-teens, especially after Pope Paul VI’s visit in 1967. It was due to reading about Our Lady’s message that I took up on my own the praying of the Rosary, which I do daily.

    But all this speculation about a so-called ‘Fourth Secret’ gives me a headache. I go by what Sister Lucia said after the Secret was revealed in 2000, ‘There are no more secrets.’ I never subscribed to theories by people like Father Gruner (who, as Andrew states, was suspended by Rome), John Vennari, and Fr. Paul Kramer (his book was sold in the bookstore I worked at). I believe that the Consecration of Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary was done on March 25, 1984; again, as Sister Lucia said at the time, ‘God will keep His word.’ What Catholics should do now is to LIVE the Message of Fatima-that ‘living it’ will bring down the graces needed for the peace of the world and the complete conversion of Russia! We have not done our part, that’s why we have all the moral and spiritual problems that plague us today!

    I pray for the safety of our present Holy Father Benedict XVI to Fatima next week. In fact, this will be the first papal visit without the presence of Sister Lucia.

  49. This is the kind thing that concerns me (quoting mfranks @8:20 yesterday). mfranks writes, first quoting another commenter:

    Torch621 comments: “Sister Lucia herself has confirmed that the consecration was carried out.” Isn’t it entirely plausible that she was coerced into making such a comment by superiors?

    Coerced by her superiors?

    This is the problem – in order to accept these scandal theories, we can only be led to have suspicion for people without just cause. This is called rash judgment and it can turn into calumny real easy.

    I have heard it both ways: Some claim it was Sr. Lucia who was coerced, while other claim that Capovilla was tirelessly ambushed by Socci until he told him what he wanted to hear, then allegedly coerced by some Vatican official into refuting what Socci attributed to him.

    This is all inuendo. Where is the objectivity?

    The greatest fruits of works like Socci is division, distraction from the heart of the Fatima message, suspicion of Church hierarchy – some of it objectively sinful if it involves rash judgment and calumny.

    I believe strongly in Fatima. I don’t think those particular fruits are what the Blessed Virgin Mary intended by appearing.

    I hope the “intense message” the Holy Father delivers is one that clarifies these things on Marian interests that are creating so much division in the Church. Most especially, I hope people will focus on approved apparitions like Fatima through the Holy Father’s drawing attention to it. It is amazing how many times people have been to the site of unapproved apparitions, yet have never set foot in Fatima or Lourdes. Why? “The Blessed Mother isn’t appearing there any longer”.

    We need some serious catechesis on Marian devotion according to the teachings of the Church and I hope it comes while the Holy Father is in Fatima.

  50. doanli says:

    Offering my headache today to the conversions of fellow sinners, Holy Poor Souls in Purgatory, and the offenses to God by ungrateful people; as the angel at Fatima (and our Blessed Mother) requested.

  51. prsuth33 says:

    Our Lady came and called for the consecration of Russia not the world. Every single consecration made from Venerable Pius XII to Venerable Pope John Paul II consecrated the world, not Russia. How about I make Chicken Paprikas (my favorite) but I don’t add the chicken? Sr. Lucia testified to this on many occasions, stating that heaven was still awaiting the consecration of Russia by name. In 2000, Cardinal Tomko said (to Inside the Vatican) Russia was never mentioned by name as to not offend the Russian Orthodox.
    Finally, is it a sin to question the veracity of the hierarchy in certain circumstances? Sr. Lucia said that there would be a “diabolical disorientation” in her private letters. Let me use one example. As Cardinal Ratzinger, Pope Benedict XVI was approached by ABC’s Brian Ross in 2002 concerning the Maciel scandal. Before slapping the reporter’s hand, then Cardinal Ratzinger said “Oh, no, I am not so much informed.” C’mon folks. That was being disingenuous at best. I know, you don’t air dirty laundry to the world, but he was well aware of the scandal and the charges against Maciel. In his 1984 interview, Cardinal Ratzinger said the message pertained to the dangers of the faith of the Christian and the world. In the 90’s, he did a complete about face. Things just don’t add up here.

  52. Tominellay says:

    Socci writes for a living, fooling with Medjugorje when he’s not fooling with Fatima. He seems to know what sells and what will keep the name Socci in the news.

  53. Fr. Terry Donahue says:

    “A careful reading of the text of the so-called third ‘secret’ of Fatima, published here in its entirety long after the fact and by decision of the Holy Father, will probably prove disappointing or surprising after all the speculation it has stirred.”

    Joseph Card. Ratzinger, Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, The Message of Fatima – Theological Commentary, May 13, 2000, http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/congregations/cfaith/documents/rc_con_cfaith_doc_20000626_message-fatima_en.html

    (emphasis mine)

  54. marylua says:

    que Dios bendiga a nuestro santo Padre y que sea toda una bendición el encuentro con nuestra madre de Fatima.. Que escriba en su corazón con tinta que nunca se logre quitar;la necesidad de consagrar a Rusia a su inmaculado corazón y que pronto veamos realizada la petición de nuestra madre del cielo para bien de nuestra alma y el alma de mucho,muchos mas..

    Que Dios uno y trino bendiga abundantemente a Benedicto XVI
    que el Espíritu Santo lo mantenga fuerte,firme y Fiel a su amor de siempre.
    que lo bendiga y proteja de los lobos malos.
    que la divina providencia le provea de todo lo necesario para hacer de esta Iglesia una Iglesia Santa digna de nuestro divino Redentor.
    que ella, nuestra Madre la Reina del Cielo y la Tierra lo mantenga por siempre bajo su amparo maternal y protector.

    Que su amor sea renovado una y otra vez y que como las águilas emprenda su vuelo hacia la búsqueda y el encuentro de la gracias divina y reformadora para quitar lo que se tiene que quitar y logremos con la ayuda de toda la familia espiritual tener una liturgia donde el alma se nutra verdaderamente de su amado Señor y donde el alma pueda vivir plenamente su cielo aquí en la tierra.

    Donde se le de todo el Honor y la Gloria, donde el enfermo logré llegar y encontrar remedió para su enfermedad ó pena, donde nada ni nadie sea mas importante, donde verdaderamente se le de todo el Honor y la Gloria por siempre a quien solo Honor y Gloria merece,amen.

  55. Re: spiritual difficulties

    Just on the normal human level, it is often difficult for a writer to describe something that he’s seen. How do you encapsulate an intense emotional and sensory experience? How do you tell what’s important and what’s not, or make others understand it?

    Hell is horrible, but really, there’s not much to it. You already know what’s important about it — that you don’t want to go there.

    A vision of the possible future, on the other hand, would be much more ticklish to describe. Exactly how much detail would you see? Should you describe faces? What if you saw strange machines? How much did God directly impress upon your mind, and how much was your own imaging powers reacting to it? What would be helpful for people to know?

    Besides all that, it had to be a pretty darned depressing vision. There are things I’ve seen that I have no desire to write about, and I haven’t seen any great amount of human suffering. Most mystics go through a lot of “dark night” stuff, too with their health and perceptions and actions; so if it wasn’t God’s will that Sr. Lucia write until a certain moment, she probably wouldn’t be able.

    What’s surprising is that we get anything reported back about visions and apparitions.

  56. SkiingCatholic2010 says:

    Some find it hard to believe that the top officials of the hierarchy is lying to us about Fatima, and rightly so. It’s a bold claim. But there’s bold evidence for it.

    Father Joseph Schwiegl interrogated Sr. Lucy on Sep. 22, 1952 under express orders of the Pope. Here’s what he said about the Third Secret. Draw your own conclusions.

    “I cannot reveal anything of what I learned at Fatima concerning the Third Secret, but I can say that it has two parts: One concerns the Pope; the other logically (although I can say nothing) would have to be the continuation of the words: ‘In Portugal the dogma of the Faith will always be preserved.'” -Father Joseph Schwiegl, Sep 22, 1952

  57. SkiingCatholic2010 says:

    Father Z, I don’t know what your thoughts are on this matter. You might not want me posting this, so feel free to take it down, but this is the video that convinced me we don’t have the full story on Fatima.

    http://fatimaondemand.org/en/index.php/special-productions/the-secret-still-silenced

  58. MichaelJ says:

    As I recall, Sr. Lucia was asked twice whether Pope John Paul II consecration (1984, I think) fulfilled Our Lady’s request. The first time, she answered no (it did not meet the requirements) and the second time she said yes. It may also (my memory’s a bit fuzzy) be that these were two separate events, but that the actions taken by the Pope were the same.

    In either case, one does not need to be a paranoid conspiracy theorist, distrusting and caluminating the hierarchy to believe that something is amiss.

    Given then, that Sr. Lucia has given conflicting testimony, what is the next logical step for a faithful Catholic? How about compare what Our Lady actually asked for with what His Holiness John Paul II actually did?

    On a related note, I am bewildered by the eagerness of many to defer to an “expert”. If Our Lady’s words were faithfully reproduced and published, what special insight does Sr. Lucia have to determine if the request was met?

    Finally, His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI could put this entire controversy to rest. What harm would come by consecrating Russia (by name in union will all of the Bishops) again?

    Those that believe that it was not done, will now be satisfied that it has finally been done, and those that believe that it was done will think that it has been done again. Problem solved.

  59. prsuth33 says:

    “A careful reading of the text of the so-called third ‘secret’ of Fatima, published here in its entirety long after the fact and by decision of the Holy Father, will probably prove disappointing or surprising after all the speculation it has stirred.”

    Joseph Card. Ratzinger, Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, The Message of Fatima – Theological Commentary, May 13, 2000, http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/congregations/cfaith/documents/rc_con_cfaith_doc_20000626_message-fatima_en.html

    (emphasis mine)
    Comment by Fr. Terry Donahue

    Fr. Donahue,

    With all due respect, do you have any idea why the Vatican document uses Sr. Lucia’s Third Memoir as a source as opposed to the updated Fourth Memoir from 1941? Further, Sr. Lucia wrote the words of Our Lady which started “In Portugal, the dogma of the faith will always be preserved, etc.” However, that document has never been released. The vision, yes. The words of Our Lady accompanying the vision, no.

  60. THREEHEARTS says:

    As a papal catholic the interpretation of Most Holy Mary’s words and the meaning of the arch-angelic exposition of the Most Holy Eucharist is very prideful. First the Prayer of the Angel of Peace Michael should be prayed so often. It states heaven’s opinion on the sacrileges and blasphemies offered by us in the Eucharist. No one takes it into account. Secondly all you conceited priests and prelates tell me who Mary sees as Bishops. That is as Shakespeare would say, “Aye! there’s the rub” Mary our Mother and Queen sees all the bishops of the world (her words) all those of the Apostolic Persuasion, as bishops. This includes orthodox schismatics and is probably if we are to believe the Holy Father’s knowledge of Fatima one of the reasons the excommunication of the Greek Orthodox was lifted. It, Fatima, was a direct command, nice request for unity under the elder brother of our faith, as Mary sees it. To think that Mary did not include of all nations Russia is the thought of simpletons singing sweet songs of seduction like the nightingale as it claims its victims in the dark. The next prideful theology is that the consecration is not valid. Of course it is but due to the frailties of mankind it was not complete. View the consecration by interpreting the theology of merits. We ascend higher with each completed act of charity. Not all the bishops agreed and though some did and acted in union with the Holy Father not all bishops in the Papal Church did let alone those who are Orthodox and of an Apostolic Succession.

    Therefore we must believe the consecration took place but not all the virtues of the priesthood were in it. Without that demand of Grace and Russia included the results of the Consecration is like the consecration weak and almost ineffectual. But like the Church teaches the grace is still there and will only be applied when all concerned are in union with the Holy Father. So convert the orthodox into our papal Church and we will see the complete fruits of the atonement sacrifice

  61. kat says:

    When Sister Lucy asked Our Lady the purpose or reason for the Consecration of Russia, to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, Our Lady responded (and I’m not trying to quote verbatim, this is from memory) that “Our Lord wishes the world to recognize and give devotion to My Immaculate Heart;” that the world will recognize that by that consecration, peace will come into the world.

    Our Lord wants His Mother to get the honor that is her due.

    A comment and a question: Our Lady promised PEACE TO THE WORLD when the consecration is made. So…for those who believe that the consecration of Russia to Her Immaculate Heart has been fulfilled as Our Lady requested: “with the Holy Father, in union with ALL THE BISHOPS OF THE WORLD at the same time”, I’m just askin: Is Our Lady a liar? Cuz I haven’t seen any world peace since those consecrations have been performed by the Popes.

    And please, don’t tell me the lack of a “World War” is the peace Our Lady promised. There has been no period of peace; NOR EVEN MORE IMPORTANTLY, the recognition by the world (not even of all Catholics, for heaven’s sake) and due honor given, to Mary’s Immaculate Heart.

    I don’t believe Our Lady is a liar; if she promises world peace, it will be something we can all enjoy, and all will recognize that it was through that consecration peace came. These are the words of Our Lady, and Our Lord through her. Regardless of any human being’s fallacies, THEY do not lie.

  62. KevinSymonds says:

    I read Socci’s book several months ago. My thoughts are still developing but one thing I noticed is that Socci is deeply rooted in an Italian quirk called “dietrology”–that is, seeing controversies or conspiracies behind every little event that happens.

    I myself have seen this quirk live and in person over the question of St. Peter’s bones.

    Then there is the thorny issue of Socci’s dependancy upon Kramer’s book “The Devil’s Final Battle.” That book is flawed in critical places and I regret–and if my memory serves–to say that Socci takes some of the flawed areas as gospel truth.

    Perhaps I’ll write something up and publish it for all to see and hopefully put some of this nonsense to rest.

    Peace!
    -Kevin J. Symonds

  63. prsuth33 says:

    Kat, you bring up a great point. Our Lady said “In the end, the Consecration to my Immaculate Heart will be made, Russia will be converted and a period of peace will follow.” It has been 26 years since the alleged consecration that was accepted by heaven. Has Russia converted? Honestly, can anyone say that Russia has converted? 145 million people, give or take, live in Russia. 500,000 are Catholic. Is that conversion? The average Russian woman will have 8 abortions. Is that peace? For every 10 live births there are 13 abortions. Sorry, that is not peace or conversion.

  64. prsuth33 says:

    The former Cardinal Ratzinger, who conferred face-to-face with Bishop Ito in Rome concerning the Akita apparitions, told Howard Dee, the former Philippines Ambassador to the Vatican, that the Message of Fatima and the Message of Akita are “essentially the same.” In that case, one would expect to find in the Fatima message something “essentially the same” as the Akita message of October 13, 1973, the very anniversary of the Miracle of the Sun at Fatima. The following is the approved message from Akita:

    “As I told you, if men do not repent and better themselves, the Father will inflict a terrible punishment on all humanity. It will be punishment greater than the deluge, such as one will never have seen before. Fire will fall from the sky and will wipe out a great part of humanity, the good as well as the bad, sparing neither priests nor faithful. The survivors will find themselves so desolate that they will envy the dead. The only arms that will remain for you will be the Rosary and Sign left by My Son. Each day recite the prayers of the Rosary. With the Rosary, pray for the pope, the bishops, and the priests.

    The work of the devil will infiltrate even the Church in such a way that one will see cardinals opposing cardinals, bishops against other bishops. The priests who venerate Me will be scorned and opposed by their conferees…churches and altars sacked, the Church will be full of those who accept compromise and the demon will press many priests and consecrated souls to leave the service of the Lord. The demon will be especially implacable against souls consecrated to God. The thought of the loss of so many souls is the cause of My sadness. If sins increase in number and gravity, there will be no longer pardon for them.”

  65. KevinSymonds says:

    prsuth33, I heard that Sr. Lucia herself addressed the question of Russia’s conversion and what this meant.

  66. Igne says:

    Johnny Domer has hit the nail on the head.

  67. Geremia says:

    Maybe this will make more people aware of the Our Lady of Akita apparitions in Japan. They were in 1973, right after “the temple of doom” (a.k.a. the SCOTUS) decided Roe v. Wade earlier that year in January.

    Although Catholics are not obliged to believe in any Marian apparitions, this one’s third message is very apropos to our current times, especially because U.S. bishops are divided over upholding Can. 915, which pertains to withholding communion from those who are “obstinately persevering in manifest grave sin,” e.g., pro-abortion politicians.

    Here’s an excerpt from the third message, October 13, 1973:

    “The work of the devil will infiltrate even into the Church in such a way that one will see cardinals opposing cardinals, bishops against bishops. The priests who venerate me will be scorned and opposed by their confreres…churches and altars sacked; the Church will be full of those who accept compromises and the demon will press many priests and consecrated souls to leave the service of the Lord.
    […]
    “Pray very much the prayers of the Rosary. I alone am able still to save you from the calamities which approach. Those who place their confidence in me will be saved.”

    Also, from a Catholic Culture article:

    Howard Dee, former Philippine ambassador to the Vatican, said in a 1998 interview with Inside the Vatican magazine: “Bishop Ito [the local bishop, now deceased] was certain Akita was an extension of Fatima, and Cardinal Ratzinger personally confirmed to me that these two messages, of Fatima and Akita, are essentially the same.”

    I wonder if he would mean that the 3rd secret of Fatima is essentially the same as the third message of Akita, partially quoted above?

  68. Jakub says:

    Fr. Z, I do like the image/icon posted @ Vivificat…

    http://vivificat1.blogspot.com/2009/12/icon-of-mother-of-god-of-fatima.html

  69. robtbrown says:

    Kat, you bring up a great point. Our Lady said “In the end, the Consecration to my Immaculate Heart will be made, Russia will be converted and a period of peace will follow.” It has been 26 years since the alleged consecration that was accepted by heaven. Has Russia converted? Honestly, can anyone say that Russia has converted? 145 million people, give or take, live in Russia. 500,000 are Catholic. Is that conversion? The average Russian woman will have 8 abortions. Is that peace? For every 10 live births there are 13 abortions. Sorry, that is not peace or conversion.
    Comment by prsuth33

    You make it seem like a vending machine: Put in the consecration to the Immaculate Heart, and conversions start coming out. Just because she said Russia will be converted doesn’t mean that it will be converted soon–or even in our lifetime.

  70. prsuth33 says:

    Robtbrown = I’m sorry if I made the consecration sound like a vending machine. But, I do take the words of Our Lady seriously. I’m no expert on Guadalupe but I think that can be used as an example. Within a relatively short period of time, what, some 13 million Aztecs converted to Catholicism. I think the time was less than 10 years. Persecution and injustice continue in Russia with regard to Catholicism. Sects of Protestantism are sprouting up (some 5,000), Buddhism, Islam, Russian Orthodox. Meanwhile, the persecution of the Catholic Church in Russia continues unabashed.

  71. kat says:

    Kat, you bring up a great point. Our Lady said “In the end, the Consecration to my Immaculate Heart will be made, Russia will be converted and a period of peace will follow.” It has been 26 years since the alleged consecration that was accepted by heaven. Has Russia converted? Honestly, can anyone say that “Russia has converted? 145 million people, give or take, live in Russia. 500,000 are Catholic. Is that conversion? The average Russian woman will have 8 abortions. Is that peace? For every 10 live births there are 13 abortions. Sorry, that is not peace or conversion.
    Comment by prsuth33″

    “You make it seem like a vending machine: Put in the consecration to the Immaculate Heart, and conversions start coming out. Just because she said Russia will be converted doesn’t mean that it will be converted soon—or even in our lifetime.”

    Then the promise and Our Lady’s words would mean nothing. She certainly is not going to allow Russia to be consecrated to her, and then ignore that country for 25+ years and allow all those souls to be lost after it belongs to her. She said that OUR LORD WILL USE THE CONVERSION OF RUSSIA after the consecration to let EVERYONE be able to see and give honor to Our Lady for it. If Russia converts 30+ years later, there would be no very obvious relationship between the act and the conversion, which could then be accounted for by other means.

    Portugal’s bishops consecrated their country to the Immaculate Heart in 1931, and they themselves claimed that it was only a miraculous answer from that consecration which saved them from Communism, the Spanish Civil War, and World War II. The history of that time is fascinating, and the turn around of the Faith in that country was QUICK and can only be miraculous. There is a video currently on the internet that you can watch regarding this history of Portugal after its consecration, for those interested. There is no earthly reason why they were spared from these calamities that devastated most of Europe.

  72. KevinSymonds says:

    I would like to point something out.

    Our Lady spoke conditionally. “IF my requests are heeded, Russia will be converted and there will be peace.”

    Her requests were not heeded (in time) and Russia spread her errors.

    Question: How does the fact of the errors of Russia having been spread compare with the 1984 consecration?

    In other words, the errors of Russia have had time to spread and take root in the world. Once Russia/the world was consecrated (“in the end, the Holy Father will consecrate Russia to me”), how does that weigh with the promise of peace to take place after the consecration? Is it the same peace that would have taken place if the consecration was done earlier as requested or is it a different peace now that the errors have spread?

    -Kevin J. Symonds

  73. prsuth33 says:

    I don’t know how to highlight or bold statements. Below is the official text of the second secret (or second part of the great secret).

    Text of Second Part of Secret

    To save them [poor sinners who are on the road to hell], God wishes to establish in the world devotion to My Immaculate Heart. If what I say to you is done, many souls will be saved and there will be peace. The war is going to end; but if people do not cease offending God, a worse war will break out during the reign of Pius XI. When you see a night illumined by an unknown light, know that this is the great sign given you by God that He is about to punish the world for its crimes, by means of war, famine, and persecutions against the Church and against the Holy Father.

    To prevent this, I shall come to ask for the consecration of Russia to My Immaculate Heart, and the Communion of Reparation on the First Saturdays. If My requests are heeded, Russia will be converted and there will be peace; if not, she will spread her errors throughout the world, causing wars and persecutions against the Church. The good will be martyred, the Holy Father will have much to suffer, various nations will be annihilated.

  74. KevinSymonds says:

    There’s something right there. The prevention of Russia’s errors were not just about the consecration of Russia, but also the Five First Saturday devotion.

    “To prevent this, I shall come to ask for the consecration of Russia to My Immaculate Heart, and the Communion of Reparation on the First Saturdays.”

    Donal Anthony Foley did a good job of highlighting this in his book on Marian Apparitions.

  75. Igne says:

    The Creed, the Sacraments and Tradition are enough for everyone. Fatimaolatry ends up being gnostic and occult all too often. Fatima’s ‘revelations’ are non-essential.

  76. robtbrown says:

    Robtbrown = I’m sorry if I made the consecration sound like a vending machine. But, I do take the words of Our Lady seriously.

    I also take them seriously, and that’s why I don’t insert any adverbs to fit my own interpretation.

    I’m no expert on Guadalupe but I think that can be used as an example. Within a relatively short period of time, what, some 13 million Aztecs converted to Catholicism. I think the time was less than 10 years. Persecution and injustice continue in Russia with regard to Catholicism. Sects of Protestantism are sprouting up (some 5,000), Buddhism, Islam, Russian Orthodox. Meanwhile, the persecution of the Catholic Church in Russia continues unabashed.
    Comment by prsuth33

    Not the same. The Guadalupe apparitions were given in Mexico to a member of the indigenous people. The apparitions concerning the conversion of Russia happened in Portugal.

  77. robtbrown says:

    “You make it seem like a vending machine: Put in the consecration to the Immaculate Heart, and conversions start coming out. Just because she said Russia will be converted doesn’t mean that it will be converted soon—or even in our lifetime.”

    Then the promise and Our Lady’s words would mean nothing. She certainly is not going to allow Russia to be consecrated to her, and then ignore that country for 25+ years and allow all those souls to be lost after it belongs to her.

    You’re right.

    And God wouldn’t allow His people to wander 40 years in the desert before they arrived at the Promised Land.

    And He certainly would not allow 40+ years of anti-Catholic nonsense in the Church following a Council in which the Vicar of Christ invoked the intercession of the Mother of God.

    No . . . wait a minute.

    She said that OUR LORD WILL USE THE CONVERSION OF RUSSIA after the consecration to let EVERYONE be able to see and give honor to Our Lady for it. If Russia converts 30+ years later, there would be no very obvious relationship between the act and the conversion, which could then be accounted for by other means.
    Comment by kat

    Disagree. The rest of the world has a better sense of the past than Americans do. (“History is bunk” and “History is just one damned thing after another”–attributed to Henry Ford).

    I stood with my Latin class on the place where Julius Caesar was assassinated more than 2000 years ago. As we were reading of the murder, a window opened and someone asked whether we knew how many times Caesar was stabbed.

    In patientia vestra possebitis animas vestras.

  78. catholicmidwest says:

    The secrets of Fatima are a strange thing, a very cradle Catholic thing. Not only that, they usually seem to be very garbled to me. A lot of cradle Catholic stuff comes across that way though–just not very specific and very goofy.

    That said, these secrets-coming from an approved apparition, after all-appear to say:

    *1st secret*: There is a hell and anyone could go there. (no argument there, but also no mystery–scripture says as much; perhaps this was merely meant as a reminder. OK. Fair enough. Except for the fact that it seems gratuitous to scare the pants off 3 little kids like that. Just sayin’.)

    *2nd secret*: WW1 will end and another one will begin (not much of a mystery considering this secret was divulged by Lucia in 1941 and WWII was already in progress in Europe). All the Russia stuff that we know about is in this secret which did appear to deal with the middle of the 20th century (pre-PJP2 papacy time frame), so I have no idea what all the howling over the consecration of Russia is, except for the fact that the alarm was out in the Church over communism big time. It was a big deal with 3 consecutive popes: Pacelli, Roncalli, Montini. Not a word about the Nazis though, bloodthirsty pseudo-messianist bastards that they were. Odd.

    *3rd secret*: Supposedly not known, so I don’t know what Russia has to do with this secret. Nothing, I suspect. This is the one that was supposed to be released in 1960 etc. This is the one of interest now: post-WWII.

    Just reading the information that exists around, a lot of people have seen the secret, albeit most of them ordained. I mean really it’s hardly a secret in some locales. Even Cdl Ratzinger had quite a bit to say about it, and there are news articles to prove it. (Apparently he never thought he’d be pope.) Enough has been said that it can be surmised that it’s something like Akita–ie knock it off or disaster will ensue. Corruption from within the church, etc. I’m not sure what else we need to know.

    The release of the secret (so-called secret?) in 2000 was a mystery. The documents surrounding that make even less sense than the gobbledegook that is Fatima lore itself. Those documents are just not coherent. Sorry, but it’s the truth. Perhaps they were just an obligatory response peeled off to satisfy the notoriety raised by Sodano. Who knows what that was about? Really.

    PS, I too am a bit repelled by the Pavlov-like vending machine mentality that accompanies this stuff. I also think that the power that comes with this is easy to use, and I’m very sure I’m not the first one who’s thought of that.

    I’m also a bit repelled by the fact that I don’t need Fatima to tell me that there’s a lot of corruption in Rome (and the Church in general, including the USCCB). It’s disgusting and it makes it necessary to really watch what’s going on or get taken, even in the Church. Sad but true. I do not doubt that some clerics no longer believe. At. All. Ordained men who don’t believe are very, very, very dangerous.

  79. catholicmidwest says:

    And perhaps even more dangerous are those who still believe, but take their marching orders from within or, even worse, from the powers of evil, disorder & chaos.

  80. Andrew says:

    To bring some perspective to this discussion, I was a very good friend of the late Fr Robert Fox (who died earlier this year), founder of the Fatima Family Apostolate, and previously the Blue Army Cadets of Our Lady of Fatima.

    One time he was being interviewed on FOX News about Fatima and a caller phoned in articulating some of the typical Gruneresque arguments which have been advanced here, ie the collegial consecration to Russia hasn’t been done properly, and the Third Secret hasn’t been properly revealed.

    Father answered the caller not by debunking any of these arguments but just by asking the person, “Do you say a meditative rosary every day? Do you make the First Five Saturdays of Reparation to the Immaculate Heart of Mary as Our Lady asked, do you make sacrifices for sinners? The caller on the other end was silent.

    Fr Fox often reminder his readers what Pius XII said that “Fatima is a reaffirmation of the Gospels.” The Gospels are the Good News of Jesus Christ, not the bad news! It is essentially a positive message very much in line with what Our Lord tried to preach when He was on the earth.

    Politicizing the message of Fatima, is a distortion of its contents, sometimes resulting in an ugly sensationalism and distracts people from following its true message which is prayer, penance, reparation, and personal consecration to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

    This false attitude has also given currency to a number of unapproved and nutty apparitions that push this line to excess of the “vengeful Virgin”. (I think of Bayside and Necedah in particular!)

    Even the final message of Akita (a church approved apparition at the local level) looks suspiciously like a dubious and discredited version of the Third Secret of Fatima in the German journal New Europe, which was published in 1963 and circulated for years afterwards, causing a lot of people to ignore what the apparitions to the children were all about.

    I hope and pray Pope Benedict when he is in Fatima will above all preach the timeliness of its message, which too few have an interest in following.

    To whet our appetite, why don’t we recall the beautiful homily Pope John Paul II gave in Fatima when beatifying the two little shepherds Franciso & Jaccinta Marto on May 13, 2000. This is the most beautiful testimony regarding the spirituality of the brother and sister.

    I always felt the most extraordinary part of this homily is when Pope John Paul thanks Blessed Jacinta (a little girl)for her prayers and sacrifices for the Holy Father, whom she saw suffering greatly.

    This is a message which resonates in the light of recent attacks on Pope Benedict but as the official interpretation of the Third Secret says, one can see in this the martyrdom of several Popes.

    http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/john_paul_ii/travels/documents/hf_jp-ii_hom_20000513_beatification-fatima_en.html

  81. robtbrown says:

    catholicmidwest,

    I have often wondered the significance that the apparitions were at Fatima, who was the daughter of Mohammed.

  82. Andrew says:

    robtbrown,

    Fatima is indeed Mohammed’s daugther, a fact that Archbishop Fulton Sheen always drew attention too, when talking about Our Lady of Fatima

    But the Fatima in Portugal is actually named after a Muslim princess named Fatima, who later on became a Christian. Her baptismal name was Oureana, from whence the name of the provincial town Ourem (where Fatima is located in) is derived from.

  83. robtbrown says:

    But the Fatima in Portugal is actually named after a Muslim princess named Fatima, who later on became a Christian. Her baptismal name was Oureana, from whence the name of the provincial town Ourem (where Fatima is located in) is derived from.
    Comment by Andrew —

    And the Muslim princess was named Mohammed daughter. The fact that she became Christian is also significant.

  84. robtbrown says:

    Should be : named after the Mohammed’s daughter.

  85. Sedgwick says:

    What, not a word about the Fatima Conference occurring at this very moment in Rome, organized by Father Gruner? Being monitored very carefully, no doubt, by the Vatican?

    http://www.fatimachallenge.com/

  86. catholicmidwest says:

    I still don’t get the whole consecration of Russia thing. That was part of the 2nd secret, not the 3rd. If you read the 2nd secret carefully, minding your pronouns, it really does appear to pertain to the middle of the 20th century. Now, the 3rd secret may be something else again, but the Russia thing is in the 2nd secret.

    Andrew,
    I appreciate your assertion that the Rosary is really about the Gospels, and that Fatima is really about prayer. This is absolutely true. Unfortunately, that’s often not how discussion of it appears, particularly when it gets shrill.