Thursday, 10 October 2013

Pope Francis consecrates the world to the Immaculate Heart of Mary On October 13th 2013 after the Holy Mass

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England and Wales: 18 February 2017

Ireland: 15 August 2013 BACKGROUND   HOMILY

Philippines: 8 June 2013

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USA: 11 November 2006

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Lebanon and Middle East in Fatima: 25 June 2017

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Santa Rosa, California USA: 9 - 10 December 2017

Tasmania - Hobart Australia: 13 May 2017

Fatima Consecration - Chronology - EWTN

Consecration of the World to the Immaculate Heart of Mary

Brazil May 2019


IN THIS CENTENARY JUBILEE YEAR OF THE FATIMA APPARITIONS, MANY NATIONS AND DIOCESES ARE DOING THE ACT (OR RENEWAL) TO THE IMMACULATE HEART OF MARY, 
PLEASE TRY FOR THIS IN YOUR AREA TOO

"The Immaculate alone has from God the promise of victory over Satan. She seeks souls that will consecrate themselves entirely to her, that will become in her hands forceful instruments for the defeat of Satan and the spread of God's kingdom."---St. Maximilian Kolbe
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BRIEF EXPLANATION OF THE CONSECRATION


To consecrate our person, our family, our parish, our diocese, our nation, our world to God through the Immaculate Heart of Mary is to PREPARE OURSELVES TO OFFER TO GOD our being and possessions, all that we were, are and will be, our virtues and our sins, our strengths and our weaknesses, our unfaithfulness, in an OBLATION OF LOVE, imitating Jesus Christ who totally gave himself to the Eternal Father on the Cross.

We become true DISCIPLES AND APOSTLES of Jesus following Mary’s steps. Consecration is the most important spiritual lesson in Fatima. To repair the damage caused by sin we have to offer ourselves to the Good Lord, we have to become other John’s, other beloved disciples that will restore God’s majesty and glory diminished by the sins of the world.

We will repair the offences against His Love, and the terrible damage against the Mystical Body of Christ, the Church that suffers and bleeds so much for so many of her children! This is the infinite spiritual power of CONSECRATION based on Christ’s merits and the superabundant treasures of GRACE AND MERCY mentioned in the Apparition of Tuy. (On 13 June 1929, while Sister Lucia adored the Blessed Sacrament at midnight, the Most Holy Trinity appeared to her accompanied by the Immaculate Heart of Mary).

Through His Passion, Death on the Cross and Resurrection, and through our collaboration and participation in His GRACE AND MERCY, our souls will be loved by God in a special way, with a love of predilection.

On June 13th, 1917, Our Lady of Fatima said to Lucia: “Jesus wishes to use you in making me known and loved. He wishes to spread in the world the devotion to my Immaculate Heart (Communion of Reparation of First Saturdays). I promise salvation to those who embrace this devotion and those souls will be loved by God, like flowers placed by me to adorn His throne… My Immaculate Heart will be your refuge and the way that will lead you to God.”

So it will be for us too! Let us consecrate ourselves and all we care for to the Immaculate Heart of Mary! The world is fragile. We must hand it over to the Heart of our Spiritual Mother; we must confide our fate and that of humanity to the DIVINE PROVIDENCE!

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One of the least understood parts of the message of Fatima, is the request made by the Blessed Virgin Mary, that people consecrate themselves to her Immaculate Heart.  Yet, this consecration really is very easy to understand; is a perfectly natural request for our Heavenly Mother to make of her children; and give her a very powerful weapon for offsetting evil, saving souls and the world, and preserving peace.

According to St. Louis de Montfort, and many other saints, Almighty God has established His Blessed Mother as Mediatrix of All Graces; that all the treasures of Heaven have been placed in her care, to dispense "to whom she wills, as much as she wills, as she wills, and when she wills."  (True Devotion, No. 25).  Some say this will be the next dogma to be defined by the Church.  The Mexican Hierarchy already has petitioned the Holy See to this end.  The word "consecrate" means to set aside for a particular purpose and no other.  For example, the chalice the priest uses in the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, is a consecrated object, and cannot be used for anything else.  The Blessed Mother is asking us to do the same thing—reserve ourselves exclusively for her use.  Each of us has a free will.  We can be consecrated for good or evil.  For good, by giving ourselves to God, through His Mother, in leading Christian lives and obeying the Commandments.  For evil, by giving ourselves up to the pleasures and sins of the world.  

Mary is asking us to give ourselves to Jesus through her, so she can protect us against the snares of the devil, who is trying to destroy our souls for all eternity.  In an apparition to a young girl in Germany in 1946 the Blessed Mother reportedly stated:  "If you consecrate yourselves to me without reserve, I shall take care of all the rest."  Isn't it logical that, in proportion to our love for Mary, and the degree to which we live our consecration to her, she in turn, will pour out upon us the infinite treasures of Heaven, spiritual and material, which God has placed at her disposal?  The Little Flower once wrote:  "The treasures of a Mother belong to her children; and I am thy child, O, Dear Mother Mary."  (Daily Thoughts from the Little Flower)  And the greatest treasure Mary gives those who truly are her children, is her Divine Son, Jesus Christ, and happiness with Him forever.

Mary Wants to Protect Us

From a purely practical point of view, the Mother of God wants us to consecrate ourselves to her Immaculate Heart for two reasons:  (1) To protect us and our families in the momentous days ahead; (2) To get help from us to save sinners from Hell.

When we consecrate ourselves to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, we are, in effect, placing ourselves, our homes and our families under Our Lady's protection, admitting that we need her help in the dangers ahead—be they spiritual or physical.  At the same time, we give to her our prayers, sacrifices and merits from good works that she may use to help save many souls from Hell—including our own.

Anyone who has ever lived on a farm knows that, when a storm arises, the mother hen usually runs out and tries to gather all the little chickens under her wings.  If they remain there, they may look out and be frightened at the thunder, lightening and rain, but they have nothing to fear, for the mother hen will protect them. 

It is the same with our Blessed Mother.  We are all her children.  She loves us very much.  She does not want to see any harm come to us, any more than we want to see our children harmed.  She has promised a great triumph of her Immaculate Heart.  There are indications this may come soon.  But before it comes, there is liable to be a period of storm and danger.  The Blessed Mother can see this coming, even if we cannot.  So our Heavenly Mother is hurrying about as fast as she can, trying to gather all her children, who will listen, under her mantle of protection while there is still time.  Those who will do so, by granting her requests and consecrating themselves to her, may look out in the days to come, and may be frightened at what they may see.  This may include the destruction of cities, but, especially the despair of those who will have built their hopes in material security, and will see their castles come tumbling to the ground.  Yet the Blessed Mother tells her children they will have nothing to fear, for she will protect them spiritually and materially, come what may.

Another very important reason, is to get help to save the souls of dying sinners from Hell.  At Fatima, after Our Lady had shown the three children the horrible vision of Hell, she stated sadly:  "Many poor sinners go to Hell because they have no one to pray or make sacrifice for them.  To help save them, God wishes to establish in the world the devotion to my Immaculate Heart."

What Consecration Does

When we consecrate ourselves to Mary Immaculate, in proportion to how completely we live this consecration, all our thoughts, words, actions, prayers, suffering, merits from our good works, and the fulfillment of daily duties, take on a stupendous increase in value.  Then, the Blessed Mother can do much more with all these things than if we are not consecrated.  This can be explained by various examples.

In the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, the priest uses three ingredients: water, wine and a host or wafer of bread.  The total monetary value of these is very low.  Yet, when the priest pronounces the words of consecration, these articles take on an infinite value, and become the Body and Blood of Our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.  Then, tremendous graces flow through Them for the salvation of souls.  We cannot see the change, but our faith tells us it has taken place.

Our thoughts, words, actions, prayers, and sacrifices, of themselves, certainly are not very powerful in trying to save a world from destruction or many souls from Hell.  Yet, when we consecrate ourselves to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, all we give her increases greatly in value; Mary herself adds the extra value in proportion to our degree of consecration.  We cannot see the change, any more than we can see the change of the bread and wine into the Body and Blood of Our Lord.  Yet Mary assures us that it takes place, and she is able to accomplish much more with what we have given her.  Thus, those consecrated to Mary could be the means of buying the grace of salvation for many of other souls.  It often has been said: "For the sake of the few, many will be saved."

It is also logical that if we help Mary save other souls, she will help us save our own.  Our Lord once told Sister Josepha Menendez (The Way of Divine Love) that if He finds one soul in a family, who lives for His sake, gives Him all that He asks, sacrifices herself for Him and does not count the cost—in other words, is totally consecrated to Him—for the sake of that one, He will save all the members of that soul's family, so long as they are willing to be saved.  If the soul does not wish to be saved in spite of the graces God may give, then that soul will not be saved.  But there may be many in a family, away from God through fear, ignorance, pride, misunderstanding, weakness, or other reasons, who truly would like to be at peace with Him.  All these, for the sake of the one totally given to God, can be saved.

Mary Purifies Our Gifts

The same is true of those totally consecrated to Mary; for, as St. Louis de Montfort writes, when we consecrate ourselves to her, we really consecrate ourselves to Jesus through Mary.

There are many good souls who do not like the idea of going to Jesus through Mary.  They want to go directly to "headquarters"—to Jesus, Himself—with their petitions and offerings.  They do not seem to realize that, when they approach Our Lord directly, they are going on their own merits alone.  No matter how good they may be, their prayers and offerings cannot possibly have the same value as would be the case if they placed them in the hands of Mary.  In proportion to their consecration of love for her, Mary would add many merits of her own.  She would then present their offering or request to God. 

 Having lived with Jesus 30 years, Mary, more than anyone else, certainly knows the way to His Heart.  If we place our cares, needs and gifts in her hands she will cleanse and purify them, and add what is necessary to make them pleasing and acceptable in the sight of Almighty God, Our Father.  Thus, we stand a much better chance of having our requests granted.  If we do not get what we ask—because it may not be for our spiritual good—then Mary will obtain for us other needed graces.  One way or the other, we will not be turned away empty-handed.

As we have written so often, no devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary is a true devotion if it does not lead the soul closer to Jesus and more frequent reception of the Sacraments, and obedience to God's Laws.

Jesus and Mary are NOT in competition with each other.  Rather, both are as one in desiring, seeking and working for the salvation of souls.  The Blessed Virgin Mary was given to us as our Mother, at the foot of the Cross, out of the providence, love and mercy of God for all poor sinners.

At Fatima Our Lady revealed not just her will, but the WILL OF ALMIGHTY GOD, concerning devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary, when she said:  "Tell everybody that God gives graces through the Immaculate Heart of Mary.  Tell them to ask graces from her, AND THAT THE SACRED HEART OF JESUS WISHES TO BE VENERATED TOGETHER WITH THE IMMACULATE HEART OF MARY.  Ask them to plead for peace from the Immaculate Heart of Mary, for the Lord has confided the peace of the world to her."  
COURTESY: http://www.marys-touch.com/history/consecration.htm
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POPE CONSECRATES WORLD TO IMMACULATE HEART OF MARY
2013-10-13 Vatican Radio             SEE BELOW FOR PHOTOS
The Pope celebrated mass in St Peter’s square this morning in honour of the Marian Day, an event organised as part of the Year of Faith on the anniversary of the final apparition of the Blessed Virgin Mary at Fatima (13th of October 1917). He also consecrated the world to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.
Please find below the full text of Pope Francis’ homily in English translation.


In the Psalm we said: “Sing to the Lord a new song, for he has done marvellous things” (Ps 98:1). Today we consider one of the marvellous things which the Lord has done: Mary! A lowly and weak creature like ourselves, she was chosen to be the Mother of God, the Mother of her Creator.
Considering Mary in the light of the readings we have just heard, I would like to reflect with you on three things: first, God surprises us, second, God asks us to be faithful, and third, God is our strength.
FIRST: GOD SURPRISES US. The story of Naaman, the commander of the army of the king of Aram, is remarkable. In order to be healed of leprosy, he turns to the prophet of God, Elisha, who does not perform magic or demand anything unusual of him, but asks him simply to trust in God and to wash in the waters of the river. Not, however, in one of the great rivers of Damascus, but in the little stream of the Jordan. Naaman is left surprised, even taken aback. What kind of God is this who asks for something so simple? He wants to turn back, but then he goes ahead, he immerses himself in the Jordan and is immediately healed (cf. 2 Kg 5:1-4). There it is: God surprises us. It is precisely in poverty, in weakness and in humility that he reveals himself and grants us his love, which saves us, heals us and gives us strength. He asks us only to obey his word and to trust in him.
This was the experience of the Virgin Mary. At the message of the angel, she does not hide her surprise. It is the astonishment of realizing that God, to become man, had chosen her, a simple maid of Nazareth. Not someone who lived in a palace amid power and riches, or one who had done extraordinary things, but simply someone who was open to God and put her trust in him, even without understanding everything: “Here I am, the servant of the Lord; let it be with me according to your word” (Lk 1:38). That was her answer. God constantly surprises us, he bursts our categories, he wreaks havoc with our plans. And he tells us: trust me, do not be afraid, let yourself be surprised, leave yourself behind and follow me!
Today let us all ask ourselves whether we are afraid of what God might ask, or of what he does ask. Do I let myself be surprised by God, as Mary was, or do I remain caught up in my own safety zone: in forms of material, intellectual or ideological security, taking refuge in my own projects and plans? Do I truly let God into my life? How do I answer him?
In the passage from Saint Paul which we have heard, the Apostle tells his disciple Timothy: remember Jesus Christ. If we persevere with him, we will also reign with him (cf. 2 Tim 2:8-13). 


THIS IS THE SECOND THING: TO REMEMBER CHRIST ALWAYS – to be mindful of Jesus Christ – and thus to persevere in faith. God surprises us with his love, but he demands that we be faithful in following him. We can be unfaithful, but he cannot: he is “the faithful one” and he demands of us that same fidelity. Think of all the times when we were excited about something or other, some initiative, some task, but afterwards, at the first sign of difficulty, we threw in the towel. Sadly, this also happens in the case of fundamental decisions, such as marriage. It is the difficulty of remaining steadfast, faithful to decisions we have made and to commitments we have made. Often it is easy enough to say “yes”, but then we fail to repeat this “yes” each and every day. We fail to be faithful.
Mary said her “yes” to God: a “yes” which threw her simple life in Nazareth into turmoil, and not only once. Any number of times she had to utter a heartfelt “yes” at moments of joy and sorrow, culminating in the “yes” she spoke at the foot of the Cross. Here today there are many mothers present; think of the full extent of Mary’s faithfulness to God: seeing her only Son hanging on the Cross. The faithful woman, still standing, utterly heartbroken, yet faithful and strong.
And I ask myself: am I a Christian by fits and starts, or am I a Christian full-time? Our culture of the ephemeral, the relative, also takes its toll on the way we live our faith. God asks us to be faithful to him, daily, in our everyday life. He goes on to say that, even if we are sometimes unfaithful to him, he remains faithful. In his mercy, he never tires of stretching out his hand to lift us up, to encourage us to continue our journey, to come back and tell him of our weakness, so that he can grant us his strength. This is the real journey: to walk with the Lord always, even at moments of weakness, even in our sins. Never to prefer a makeshift path of our own. That kills us. Faith is ultimate fidelity, like that of Mary.


THE LAST THING: GOD IS OUR STRENGTH. I think of the ten lepers in the Gospel who were healed by Jesus. They approach him and, keeping their distance, they call out: “Jesus, Master, have mercy on us!” (Lk 17:13). They are sick, they need love and strength, and they are looking for someone to heal them. Jesus responds by freeing them from their disease. Strikingly, however, only one of them comes back, praising God and thanking him in a loud voice. Jesus notes this: ten asked to be healed and only one returned to praise God in a loud voice and to acknowledge that he is our strength. Knowing how to give thanks, to give praise for everything that the Lord has done for us.
Take Mary. After the Annunciation, her first act is one of charity towards her elderly kinswoman Elizabeth. Her first words are: “My soul magnifies the Lord”, in other words, a song of praise and thanksgiving to God not only for what he did for her, but for what he had done throughout the history of salvation. Everything is his gift. If we can realise that everything is God’s gift, how happy will our hearts be! Everything is his gift. He is our strength! Saying “thank you” is such an easy thing, and yet so hard! How often do we say “thank you” to one another in our families? These are essential words for our life in common. “Excuse me”, “sorry”, “thank you”. If families can say these three things, they will be fine. “Excuse me”, “sorry”, “thank you”. How often do we say “thank you” in our families? How often do we say “thank you” to those who help us, those close to us, those at our side throughout life? All too often we take everything for granted! This happens with God too. It is easy to approach the Lord to ask for something, but to go and thank him: “Well, I don’t need to”.
As we continue our celebration of the Eucharist, let us invoke Mary’s intercession. May she help us to be open to God’s surprises, to be faithful to him each and every day, and to praise and thank him, for he is our strength. Amen.


POPE FRANCIS: SAY YES TO GOD LIKE MARY
2013-10-13 Vatican Radio
(Vatican Radio) Over 100 thousand people came to St Peter’s Square on Sunday to see Pope Francis consecrate the world to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.
The statue of Our Lady of Fatima, which had been brought to the Square the evening before, took centre stage as the Holy Father made an act of Devotion in front of her. In prayer he said, “We are confident that each of us is precious in your sight, guard our lives in your arms: bless and strengthen every desire for goodness.”It was the culmination of a morning in which the Pope celebrated Mass on this, the feast of Our Lady of Fatima. The devotion to Our Lady was very much in evidence as many of those present held up images of Mary and clasped in their hands miniature statues of Our Lady of Fatima as they listened to the Pope’s homily.
Pope Francis who is well known for his devotion to the Blessed Virgin said that it was a day to consider one of the marvelous things Mary had done, that was “to be chosen to be the Mother of God”.Taking Sunday’s liturgy as his inspiration, Pope Francis reflected on three things. They were that God surprises us, God asks us to be faithful and God is our strength.


Referring to Mary the Holy Father said God surprised Mary, but despite this she was able to say, “Here I am, the servant of the Lord, be it done onto me according to your word.” The Pope went on to say that God does surprise us, he wreaks havoc with our plans, but he also says “trust me, do not be afraid”.In his second reflection “God asks us to be faithful” Pope Francis explained that God is loving, but he also “demands that we be faithful in following him”. Mary was that faithful follower, he continued, she said her “yes” to God both in moments of joy and sorrow.” The Holy Father then said, our duty is to “walk with God always, even in moments of weakness, even in our sins. That, he added, is what is means to be “a full-time Christian.”
In his third point, “God is our Strength”, Pope Francis said that Mary gave praise and thanks to God . She did this, the Pope stressed because, “Everything is his gift. He is our strength!” He also underlined the importance of not taking things for granted and asked people to remember, three key words, sorry, excuse me and thank you. .As the statue of Our Lady of Fatima watched over the many thousands in St Peter’s Square, the Pope in his Angelus took the opportunity to say “Thank You” to those who had come from near and far for this weekend of faith dedicated to Mary Our Mother. 

PRAYER OF CONSECRATION TO THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY


VATICAN CITY, October 13, 2013  - Here is the translation
of the prayer of consecration recited by Pope Francis in consecrating the world to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

"Blessed Virgin Mary of Fatima, with renewed gratitude for your maternal presence, we unite our voices to all generations that proclaim you blessed. 
We celebrate in you the great works of God, who never gets tired of drawing close to humanity, afflicted by evil and wounded by sin, to cure and save it. 
Welcome with a mother’s benevolence this act of consecration that we make today, entrusted before your image so beloved by us. 
Welcome our life in your arms. 
Bless and strengthen every wish of goodness. 
Revive and nourish the faith. 
Support and illuminate hope. 
Bring forward and nourish charity. 
Guide us all on the path of holiness. 
Show us your favorite love for the smallest and the poor, for the excluded and for those who suffer, for sinners and for those who are lost. 
Gather them all under your protection and give them to your Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ. 
Amen."

Perpetual consecration refers to the fact that this is the most important act of the virtue of religion and that by the infinite merits of Jesus Christ, the Consecration made is valid from now to eternity! By virtue of the authority of the Church, this Consecration Entrusts a particular Diocese, in this case, perpetually, to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. The same happened with the Collegial Consecration performed by Saint John Paul II precisely on March 25, 1984, whose validity extends to eternity!!! It is in the text by St. John Paul II.

25th March 2017, the Solemnity of the Incarnation (Annunciation) and the 33th Anniversary of the Collegial Consecration of the world to the IHM, that saved us from a terrible nuclear war and provided for the collapse of the Soviet Union, the fall of the Iron Curtain, the reunification of Germany and the fall of the Berlin Wall, and so on, that Saint John Bosco called “the New Marian Lepanto at the end of the 20th  Century.” (Chapter 11 of Prof Americo's book THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY IN TODAY’S CHURCH).
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2013-10-12 Vatican Radio
(Vatican Radio) A Marian prayer vigil was held on Saturday evening in St. Peter's Square, with a special catechesis by Pope Francis. The statue of Our Lady of Fatima from the Portuguese shrine was flown to Rome for the event. The Pope was scheduled to consecrate the world to Our Lady during a Mass on Sunday.
His prepared catechesis is re-produced below.

CATECHESIS OF THE HOLY FATHER: “THE FAITH OF MARY” MARIAN VIGIL
(Saturday, 12 October 2013)

Dear Brothers and Sisters,
We are all gathered for this event of the Year of Faith devoted to Mary, Mother of Christ and of the Church, our Mother. The statue of Our Lady, which has come from Fatima, helps us to feel her presence in our midst. Mary always brings us to Jesus. She is a woman of faith, a true believer. What was Mary’s faith like?

1. The first aspect of her faith is this: Mary’s faith unties the knot of sin (cf. Lumen Gentium, 56). What does that mean? The Fathers of the Second Vatican Council took up a phrase of Saint Irenaeus, who states that “the knot of Eve’s disobedience was untied by the obedience of Mary; what the virgin Eve bound by her unbelief, the Virgin Mary loosened by her faith” (Adversus Haereses, III, 22, 4).
The “knot” of disobedience, the “knot” of unbelief. When children disobey their parents, we can say that a little “knot” is created. This happens if the child acts with an awareness of what he or she is doing, especially if there is a lie involved. At that moment, they break trust with their parents. How often does this happen! Then the relationship with their parents needs to be purified of this fault; the child has to ask forgiveness so that harmony and trust can be restored. Something of the same sort happens in our relationship with God. When we do not listen to him, when we do not follow his will, we do concrete things that demonstrate our lack of trust in him – for that is what sin is – and a kind of knot is created deep within us. These knots take away our peace and serenity. They are dangerous, since many knots can form a tangle which gets more and more painful and difficult to undo.
But nothing is impossible for God’s mercy! Even the most tangled knots are loosened by his grace. And Mary, whose “yes” opened the door for God to undo the knot of the ancient disobedience, is the Mother who patiently and lovingly brings us to God, so that he can untangle the knots of our soul by his fatherly mercy. We might ask ourselves: What knots do I have in my life? Do I ask Mary to help me trust in God’s mercy, in order to change?

2. A second aspect is that Mary’s faith gave human flesh to Jesus. As the Council says: “Through her faith and obedience, she gave birth on earth to the very Son of the Father, without knowing man but by the overshadowing of the Holy Spirit” (Lumen Gentium, 63). This was a point on which the Fathers of the Church greatly insisted: Mary first conceived Jesus in faith and then in the flesh, when she said “yes” to the message God gave her through the angel. What does this mean? It means that God did not want to become man by ignoring our freedom; he wanted to pass through Mary’s free assent, her “yes”.
But what took place most singularly in the Virgin Mary also takes place within us, spiritually, when we receive the word of God with a good and sincere heart and put it into practice. It is as if God takes flesh within us; he comes to dwell in us, for he dwells in all who love him and keep his word.
Let us ask ourselves: Do we think about this? Or do we think that Jesus’ incarnation is simply a past event which has nothing to do with us personally? Believing in Jesus means giving him our flesh with the humility and courage of Mary, so that he can continue to dwell in our midst. It means giving him our hands, to caress the little ones and the poor; our feet, to go forth and meet our brothers and sisters; our arms, to hold up the weak and to work in the Lord’s vineyard, our minds, to think and act in the light of the Gospel; and especially our hearts, to love and to make choices in accordance with God’s will. All this happens thanks to the working of the Holy Spirit. Let us be led by him!

3. The third aspect is Mary’s faith as a journey. The Council says that Mary “advanced in her pilgrimage of faith” (Lumen Gentium, 58). In this way she precedes us on this pilgrimage, she accompanies and sustains us.
How was Mary’s faith a journey? In the sense that her entire life was to follow her Son: he is the way, he is the path! To press forward in faith, to advance in the spiritual pilgrimage which is faith, is nothing other than to follow Jesus; to listen to him and be guided by his words; to see how he acts and to follow in his footsteps; to have his same sentiments of humility, mercy, closeness to others, but also his firm rejection of hypocrisy, duplicity and idolatry. The way of Jesus is the way of a love which is faithful to the end, even unto sacrificing one’s life; it is the way of the cross. The journey of faith thus passes through the cross. Mary understood this from the beginning, when Herod sought to kill the newborn Jesus. But then this experience of the cross became deeper when Jesus was rejected and Mary’s faith encountered misunderstanding and contempt, and when Jesus’ “hour” came, the hour of his passion, when Mary’s faith was a little flame burning in the night. Through the night of Holy Saturday, Mary kept watch. Her flame, small but bright, remained burning until the dawn of the resurrection. And when she received word that the tomb was empty, her heart was filled with the joy of faith: Christian faith in the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. This was the culmination of Mary’s journey of faith, and that of the whole Church. What is our faith like? Like Mary, do we keep it burning even at times of difficulty and darkness? Do I have the joy of faith?

This evening, O Mary, we thank you for our faith, and we renew our entrustment to you, Mother of our faith.


POPE FRANCIS: MARY'S FAITH UNTIES THE KNOT OF SIN
2013-10-12 Vatican Radio
(Vatican Radio) Thousands of pilgrims were in Saint Peter’s Square Saturday evening to join Pope Francis in venerating the original statue of Our Lady of Fatima. The statue made its journey to Rome as the celebrations for the Feast of Our Lady Fatima, which is October 13. Pope Francis will preside over Mass on Sunday morning, and the recitation of the Rosary before the statue. He will then consecrate the world to Mary’s Immaculate Heart.
During the evening’s event, the Pope welcomed the statue, which was processed through Saint Peter’s Square, and led the faithful in reciting the Seven Sorrows of Mary. The Holy Father then offered a reflection which focused on the Blessed Mother’s faith, explaining that her “faith unties the knot of sin.”Sin, he says, is “is a kind of knot created deep within us,” and these knots “take away our peace and serenity.”

It was Mary’s “yes” which “opened the door for God to undo the knot of the ancient disobedience.”She is “the mother who patiently and lovingly brings us to God so that he can untangle the knots of our soul by his fatherly mercy.”
The Pope also reflected on how it was Mary’s faith that “gave flesh to Jesus.”Believing in the Incarnation, Pope Francis continued, “means giving him our flesh with the humility and courage of Mary, so that he can continue to dwell in our midst.”
The Holy Father then reflected on Mary’s faith as a journey, saying how “she precedes us on this pilgrimage, she accompanies and sustains us.”To say that her faith is a journey is to say that “her entire life was to follow her Son.”

Mary understood that the journey of the faith passes through the Cross, from the time Herod sought to kill the newborn Jesus until his passion and death on the Cross. “And when she received word that the tomb was empty, her heart was filled with the joy of faith: Christian faith in the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.”
Pope Francis concluded his address by turning to the statue of Our Lady of Fatima, saying: “we thank you for our faith, and we renew our entrustment to you, Mother of our faith. 
2013-10-11 Vatican Radio
(Vatican Radio) As a Marian weekend takes place here in the Vatican, in the context of the Year of Faith, the original statue of Our Lady of Fatima will be brought here on Saturday 12th of October for the occasion.
A statue with a precious crown which famously has the bullet with which Blessed John Paul II was shot at in Saint Peter’s Square encased in it. You may remember how the date of this attempt on his life took place on the 13
th of May, the same date as that of the first apparition of Our Lady to the three Fatima shepherd children back in 1917. And how this Polish Pontiff believed it was through her intercession that his life had been spared on that occasion. Hence his symbolic gesture of encasing the bullet in the crown as a sign of thanksgiving for the grace received.
But on Saturday this statue is back in Saint Peter’s Square on another significant date regarding the Fatima apparitions : the 13
th of October. The date when in 1917 Our Lady appeared to the three shepherd children from the hamlet of Aljustrel for the final time, in what is known as ‘the miracle of the sun ‘ .
At the time the three children, Francisco, Jacinta and Lucia, had predicted that a miracle would take place on that spot, at that particular time, “so that everyone would believe”, in a message which they had received from heaven.The Bishop of Fatima of the day wrote in his Pastoral Letter on the Miracle: “thousands upon thousands of persons…saw all the manifestations of the sun…a phenomenon which no astronomical observatory registered and thus was not natural…persons of every category and social class, believers and unbelievers as well as journalists of the principal Portuguese newspapers..”
Courtesy: http://www.news.va/en/news/fatima-the-story-of-the-miracle-of-the-sun

PHOTOS: Courtesy Vatican and Santuario de Fatima Facebook sites
1 Statue of our Lady of Fatima on the journey to Rome



2 Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI hosts the statue of
our  Lady of Fatima at the convent where he resides
3 Rosary offered by Fatima shrine to Holy Father Francis
Following the Marian ceremony in St. Peter's Square, the effigy of the Virgin of Fatima was transported by helicopter to the Roman Sanctuary of Our Lady of Divine Love

4 Long live the Pope and the Ave of Fatima in St. Peter's Square being sung as the Image travels through the crowd to get to the Pope

5 Our Lady of Fatima being carried around St.Peter's Square
6 Pope Francis arrived in St Peter's Sq., the statue of Our Lady of Fatima is now reaching the altar after being carried around the square. The Holy Father will shortly start the Marian Catechesis


9 Pope Francis puts rosary at the foot of the statue of our Lady
10 Pope thanks to Mary for her faith


Pope Francis doing the Consecration of the world to Our Lady of Fatima

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THE ORIGINAL STATUE OF FATIMA TO VISIT ROME
Vatican City, 11 October 2013 (VIS) – This morning, a press conference was held in the Holy See Press Office to present the key event of the Year of Faith, the Marian Day, which is scheduled to take place in Rome on 12 and 13 October. The speakers at the conference were Archbishop Rino Fisichella, Bishop Jose Octavio Ruiz Arena, and Msgr. Graham Bell, respectively president, secretary and under-secretary of the Pontifical Council for Promoting the New Evangelisation.

In his address, Archbishop Fisichella, stated that at the beginning of the Year of Faith it was decided that it would be fundamental to retrace the history of our faith, and for this reason Benedict XVI placed in the foreground the figure of Mary, who represents for believers the first response of complete and total faith, in which we fully abandon ourselves to God. Therefore, on Saturday 12 October the original statue of Our Lady of Fatima will arrive in Rome, and will return to Fatima on Sunday evening. The archbishop emphasised the importance of this event, recalling that “the statue never leaves the shrine, except in the case of entirely exceptional and extraordinary events. The last time was during the Great Jubilee of the year 2000 when, on 13 May, Blessed John Paul II carried out the act of consecration to the Virgin. … The date of 13 October has been chosen as it recalls the final appearance of the Virgin to the three shepherd children in 1917”.

As is traditional in these events, on Saturday morning there will be a pilgrimage to the Tomb of Peter and in the afternoon, Pope Francis' catechesis. In the afternoon St. Peter's Square will open to pilgrims at 2.30 p.m. At 3 p.m. there will be a moment of reflection, and at 4 p.m. the procession of the Virgin around the square will begin. In accordance with tradition, pilgrims are asked to wave with white handkerchiefs as the statue of the Virgin of Fatima passes. At 5 p.m. the Holy Father will greet the statue of the Virgin in front of the Basilica. Following a moment of prayer in St. Peter's Square, the statue will be transported to the Santuario del Divino Amore, where an all-night prayer vigil will take place. On Sunday morning, the Virgin will return to the Vatican where the procession across St. Peter's Square will be repeated at 9.30 a.m., followed by Holy Mass celebrated by Pope Francis. Finally, the Pope will carry out the act of consecration to the Virgin and will pray the Angelus with the pilgrims present.

It is expected that over 150,000 pilgrims from all over the world will participate, with international representations from 48 countries.






INTERVIEW WITH THE INTERNATIONAL PRESIDENT OF THE WORLD APOSTOLATE OF FATIMA (A PUBLIC INTERNATUIONAL ASSOCIATION OF THE FAITHFUL PERMANENTLY APPROVED BY THE HOLY SEE)

Next October 13th, in Rome, Pope Francis will consecrate the world to the Immaculate Heart of Mary in the presence of the original statue of Our Lady of Fatima, coming from the Sanctuary of Fatima.  We have asked Prof. Américo Ortiz, International President of the World Apostolate of Fatima, to expand for us the meaning of the consecration to the Immaculate Heart of Mary in the context of Our Lady’s message in Fatima.     

Prof. Américo, what is the essence of the Fatima message?

The soul and essence of the Message of Fatima is the Immaculate Heart of Mary. This maternal heart revealed its secrets at Fatima, showing the little shepherds the wonders of God’s love and mercy. Through the Immaculate Heart of Mary, the Fatima seers experienced the mystery of God and were immersed in God as in an infinite ocean of love. The light that came out of the Immaculate Heart of Mary was God himself and in this light they could see themselves as in the best of mirrors. Lucia, Jacinta and Francisco contemplated the mystery of the Most Blessed Trinity, receiving a special understanding of God’s nature, and at the same time were able to receive a special understanding of their own nature, of their own conscience. This was necessary to prepare the children for their mission on earth.

The theme of the Immaculate Heart crosses over the whole message of Fatima, including Lucia’s visions in Spain, can you explain this?

Indeed. On 13 June 1929, the Immaculate Heart of Mary appeared to Sister Lucia at Tuy, Spain.  Our Lady had promised her on 13 July 1917 that she would come to remind us of the practice of the First Saturday’s devotion and the consecration to her Immaculate Heart as the two providential means offered to the modern world to achieve peace and the salvation of numerous sinners.

While Sister Lucia adored the Blessed Sacrament at midnight, the Most Holy Trinity appeared to her accompanied by the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Lucia received lights about this mystery that she was not allowed to reveal. Our Lady said: “The moment has come when God asks the Holy Father, in union with all the Bishops of the world, to make the consecration of Russia to my Immaculate Heart, promising to save it by this means.”

By the word “consecration” is meant “entrustment”. Our Lady requested the entrustment of Russia and the world to her Immaculate Heart. Those nations in most need of God’s mercy must be entrusted to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. God has confided peace and the salvation of poor sinners to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. The fate of the world is in her maternal Heart.

The statue of the Immaculate Heart of Mary at Fatima has a globe hanging on a chain from her neck just below her heart. It symbolizes the world and its fate “entrusted” to her maternal heart. It is a perpetual reminder to her and to us: Do not be afraid. Our fate is “entrusted” to her maternal heart. And the heart of a mother is the safest place to be for a little child.


Was Our Lady’s request for the consecration of Russia and the world to Her Immaculate Heart already done and accepted by God? 

Yes, it was. Pope John Paul II, the Great, understood better than anyone else the significance of this Apparition of Tuy. In his coat of arms is the motto: “Totus Tuus” (All yours, Mary), taken from St. Bernard’s act of consecration to our Blessed Mother. So, the beloved Holy Father, Blessed John Paul II, proceeded to entrust the world to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, with a special mention of Russia and of those nations in most need of God’s mercy, that is, in most need of conversion. The entrustment took place at St. Peter’s Square on March 25, 1984 in union with the vast majority of the Catholic Bishops of the world (even Orthodox Bishops were united with the pope’s act). This was the collegial consecration requested by Our Lady of Fatima in her apparition at Tuy and its effects at a crucial moment in history were incommensurable: The fall of the Berlin wall, the fall of the Soviet atheistic empire, the opening of the countries under the Iron Curtain to faith and religion, to the Church and to Evangelization — all in a peaceful manner!

Prof. Américo, what do you have to say to those that claim the consecration was not done as requested by Our Lady?

Those who do not believe that the petition of Our Lady of Fatima was answered by Blessed John Paul II, when he consecrated Russia and the world to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, on March 25, 1984, at St. Peter’s Square, are either lacking trust in God’s mercy or ignorant of the facts accomplished by this consecration. As this consecration was duly made, the Soviet Union collapsed a short time afterwards without the shedding of blood; Eastern Europe was opened to the Gospel of Jesus Christ and the Berlin Wall broken down, making possible the re-unification of Germany. All of these events are signs of the beginning of the triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary announced at Fatima. Indeed, the real possibility of a terrible nuclear world war was prevented with the cessation of the Cold War.

As humanity is free to accept God’s will or to reject it, we must say that the triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary is directly proportional to the response to grace and mercy from her children. Grace and mercy are granted but we must accept them or else the promised triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary may be delayed or hastened, diminished or expanded, according to our generosity and faith!

Does it mean that the history of the world is to be understood in the eyes of faith? 

Of course, those who do not have faith cannot accept God’s intervention in history. But there is not a better explanation for these qualitative changes in the socio-political scenario than the fulfilment of God’s promise of salvation to His people through His beloved Mother.

Meanwhile we must all be thankful to the Good Lord for his great intervention in history at the end of the twentieth century, a true new Marian Lepanto. Peace was granted for us to accept it and work to construct it. We must collaborate with God’s graces! Instead of doubting the authenticity of the 1984 collegial consecration of Russia and the world to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, we must increase our effort, through faith, hope and charity, to extend the Kingdom of God on earth by encouraging all to know and live the authentic requests of the Message of Fatima: daily meditation of five mysteries of the Rosary; sanctification of our daily duties; consecration to God through the Immaculate Heart of Mary, and the Communion of Reparation on the consecutive Five First Saturday’s of the month.

What does it really mean when we say “entrustment through the Immaculate Heart of Mary”?

To entrust our person, our family, our nation, our world to God through the Immaculate Heart of Mary is to prepare ourselves to offer God our being and possessions, all that we were, are and will be, our virtues and our sins, our strengths and our weaknesses, in an oblation of love, imitating Jesus Christ who totally gave himself to the Eternal Father on the Cross. We become true disciples and Apostles of Jesus following Mary’s steps. Entrustment is the most important spiritual lesson in Fatima. To repair the damage caused by sin we have to offer ourselves to the Good Lord, we have to become other John’s, other beloved disciples that will restore God’s majesty and glory diminished by the sins of the world. We will repair the offences against His Love, and the terrible damage against the Mystical Body of Christ, the Church that suffers and bleeds so much for so many of her children! This is the infinite spiritual power of ENTRUSTMENT based on Christ’s merits, the superabundant treasures of GRACE AND MERCY mentioned in the apparition of Tuy. Through His Passion, death on the Cross and Resurrection, and through our collaboration and participation in His grace and mercy, our souls will be loved by God in a special way, with a love of predilection.

On June 13th, 1917, Our Lady of Fatima said to Lucia: “Jesus wishes to use you in making me known and loved. He wishes to spread in the world the devotion to my Immaculate Heart. I promise salvation to those who embrace this devotion and those souls will be loved by God, like flowers placed by me to adorn His throne… My Immaculate Heart will be your refuge and the way that will lead you to God.” So, it will be for us too! Let us entrust ourselves and all we care for to the Immaculate Heart of Mary! The world is fragile. We must hand it over to the Heart of our spiritual Mother; we must confide our fate and that of humanity to Divine Providence. 

Prof. Américo, can you comment of Pope Francis’s closeness to the Fatima message?        

Yes, let us recall that at his request, Pope Francis’ petrine ministry was consecrated to Our Lady of Fatima by Cardinal Polycarpo, Patriarch of Lisbon, and all the bishops of Portugal, at the shrine of Fatima, on 13 May 2013.
Then, on October 12, 2013 he will celebrate the Marian Day in St. Peter’s Square, “a new Marian Pentecost for Marian Associations pertaining to the Pontifical Council for the Laity to focus on the New Evangelization of the world as the most important mission of the Universal Church”. Then, on Sunday 13, 2013, the Holy Father will renew the consecration of the world to the Immaculate Heart of Mary before the original statue of Our Lady of Fatima brought from the Little Chapel of Apparitions at the Fatima Shrine. This renewal of the entrustment of the fate of the Church and the world to God’s grace and mercy, through the Immaculate Heart of Mary, will occur on the 96th anniversary of the Miracle of the Sun at Fatima. It is very important for the Church to renew these spiritual ephemerides with great faith calling to conversion all in most need of God’s mercy! 



What is missing then for the promised triumph of the Immaculate Heart in the world? 

What is still missing is our total correspondence with God’s grace, our absolute self-donation in the service of God; our dynamic action to make other people know and live the Message of Fatima in their own lives! Let us be brave and acknowledge our own faults! After all, the world will not be saved without our own collaboration! The act of consecration to God through the Immaculate Heart of Mary symbolizes the will of the Church and of all human beings of good will to come closer to God, to accept His laws and commandments in their own lives. There is no magic in the words of the consecration. What we must seek is that the words of the consecration will be a reality in our own lives! Then, and only then, will we experience the triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary in its full splendor! Our Lady of the Rosary of Fatima, Queen of Peace, pray for us!


October 2014
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"Consecration to the Mother of God," says Pope Pius XII, "is a total gift of self, for the whole of life and for all eternity; and a gift which is not a mere formality or sentimentality, but effectual, comprising the full intensity of the Christian life - Marian life." This consecration, the Pope explained, "tends essentially to union with Jesus, under the guidance of Mary."
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In the last apparition the woman revealed her name in response to Lucia’s question: “I am the Lady of the Rosary.”



That same day, 70,000 people had turned out to witness the apparition, following a promise by the woman that she would show the people that the apparitions were true. They saw the sun make three circles and move around the sky in an incredible zigzag movement in a manner which left no doubt in their minds about the veracity of the apparitions. By 1930 the Bishop had approved of the apparitions and they have been approved by the Church as authentic.




The messages Our Lady imparted during the apparitions to the children concerned the violent trials that would afflict the world by means of war, starvation, and the persecution of the Church and the Holy Father in the twentieth century if the world did not make reparation for sins. She exhorted the Church to pray and offer sacrifices to God in order that peace may come upon the world, and that the trials may be averted.




Our Lady of Fatima revealed three prophetic “secrets,” the first two of which were revealed earlier and refer to the vision of hell and the souls languishing there, the request for an ardent devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, the prediction of the Second World War, and finally the prediction of the immense damage that Russia would do to humanity by abandoning the Christian faith and embracing Communist totalitarianism. The third “secret” was not revealed until the year 2000, and referred to the persecutions that humanity would undergo in the last century: “The good will be martyred; the Holy Father will have much to suffer; various nations will be annihilated'”. The suffering of the popes of the 20th century has been interpreted to include the assassination attempt on Pope John Paul II in 1981, which took place on May 13, the 64th anniversary of the apparitions. The Holy Father attributed his escape from certain death to the intervention of Our Lady: “... it was a mother's hand that guided the bullet's path and in his throes the Pope halted at the threshold of death.”




What is the central meaning of the message of Fatima? Nothing different from what the Church has always taught: it is, as Cardinal Ratzinger, now Pope Emeritus Benedict the XVI, has put it, “the exhortation to prayer as the path of “salvation for souls” and, likewise, the summons to penance and conversion.”




Perhaps the most well known utterance of the apparition of Our Lady at Fatima was her confident decalaration that “My Immaculate Heart will triumph”. Cardinal Ratzinger has interpreted this utterance as follows: “The Heart open to God, purified by contemplation of God, is stronger than guns and weapons of every kind. The fiat of Mary, the word of her heart, has changed the history of the world, because it brought the Saviour into the world—because, thanks to her Yes, God could become man in our world and remains so for all time. The Evil One has power in this world, as we see and experience continually; he has power because our freedom continually lets itself be led away from God. But since God himself took a human heart and has thus steered human freedom towards what is good, the freedom to choose evil no longer has the last word. From that time forth, the word that prevails is this: “In the world you will have tribulation, but take heart; I have overcome the world” (Jn 16:33). The message of Fatima invites us to trust in this promise.

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