Our Lady of Fátima
100th Anniversary, 13th May 2017
On 13 May 1917, nine year old Francisco Marto (11 Jun 1908–4 Apr 1919), seven year old Jacinta Marto (11 Mar 1910–20 Feb 1920), and their cousin Lucia Santos (28 Mar 1907– 13 Feb 2005), who was ten years old, were herding their families’ sheep, when they saw a woman “brighter than the sun, shedding rays of light clearer and stronger than a crystal goblet filled with the most sparkling water and pierced by the burning rays of the sun.”
As foretold by Our Blessed Mother, Jacinta and Francisco both died not long after the Marian apparitions, falling ill during the world-wide Influenza outbreak that began in 1918. Lucia, survived the outbreak, and lived a very long life. The Blessed Virgin had told her that her purpose was to spread the word of the Fatima apparitions, and make them known to the world. Lucia became a Discalced Carmelite Nun, and died in 2005 at the age of 97.
Canonization of Francisco and Jacinta Marto
Francisco and Jacinta Marto, who were beatified by Pope St. John Paul II in 2000, will be canonized by the Holy Father, Pope Francis, on 13 May 2017, the 100th Anniversary of the first Fátima apparition.
The Miracle of the Sun
Our Blessed Mother appeared to the three shepherd children six times between 13 May and 13 October 1917, each time revealing to the children visions, exhorting them to pray the Rosary, and to make sacrifices on behalf of sinners. During the final apparition, attended by tens of thousands, a miracle occurred. According to many eyewitnesses, the sun danced in the sky, not like the sparkling of a heavenly body, but in a mad whirl.
"… The silver sun, enveloped in the same gauzy grey light, was seen to whirl and turn in the circle of broken clouds … The light turned a beautiful blue, as if it had come through the stained-glass windows of a cathedral, and spread itself over the people who knelt with outstretched hands … people wept and prayed with uncovered heads, in the presence of a miracle they had awaited. The seconds seemed like hours, so vivid were they."―Reporter for the Lisbon newspaper O Dia.
Consecration of Russia
On 13 June 1929, Sr. Lucia of Fátima (Lucia Santos) experienced a vision in which the Blessed Virgin said that it was God’s will that the Pope, in union with all the Bishops of the world, consecrate Russia to her Immaculate Heart.
Requests of Our Lady
- Penance—that we make reparation for our sins, and to give up sinful practices that grieve God.
- Prayer—a call to pray the Rosary daily.
- Devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary—On the first Saturday of five consecutive months, to go to Confession and receive Holy Communion, pray the Rosary, and meditate for 15 minutes on the mysteries of the Rosary, with the intention of making reparations to Our Blessed Mother.