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The ‘Urgency of the Hour’ during the Jubilee Year of Mercy

The Call to Fatima - Basilica of the Holy RosaryThe ‘Urgency of the Hour’ during the Jubilee Year of Mercy

Last month’s article in the Catholic Voice sparked a chain of support from members of the Legion of Mary, Alliance of the Two Hearts and many others wanting to help to spread more intensely the Fatima message during 2016 / 2017. One lady from Northern Ireland sponsored our Five First Saturday ad in the Fermanagh Herald. Other newspapers contacted us seeking to put the Five First Saturday ad in seven leading local newspapers around the country. At times like this, we wish we knew somebody who won the lotto. On the 13th February 2016, we received an email from Sr Lucia’s private doctor, Dr Branca Paul from Coimbra in Portugal and she says: “Please keep going with all your hearts doing your best, working in “GOD´S FARM”. We have to be patient and persevere in our lives”. With this encouragement, we wish to share some more insight into the writings left behind by Servant of God Sr Lucia.

13th February 2005

On this date 11 years ago, Sr Lucia passed away to her eternal reward. Dr Branca Paul and the Carmel sisters in Coimbra Portugal asked us after her death to double the efforts to spread the Five First Saturday and daily Rosary devotions. Servant of God Sr Lucia stated, “Whether the world has war or peace depends on the practice of this devotion, along with the consecration to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. This is why I desire its propagation so ardently, especially because this is also the will of our dear Mother in Heaven.”.

Six years ago, we both personally witnessed Pope Benedict XVI on the 13th May 2010 in Fatima praying before the statue of Our Lady and making the following request “May the seven years which separate us from the Centenary of the Apparitions hasten the expected Triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary for the Glory of the Most Holy Trinity”. Are we witnessing the fruits of the Holy Father’s prayer unfolding before us, when on the 12th February 2016,  after 1000 years, Pope Francis and the head of the Russian Orthodox Church met for the first time in Cuba to open the way for unity and world peace?

No matter what happens in the future, Our Lady still requires our corporation and is ready to assist us in this great battle for souls. Our Lady is inviting each one of us to enter with joy and immense hope into the secure refuge of Her Immaculate Heart and promising us that in the end Her Immaculate Heart of Mary will Triumph. The Rosary and the Five First Saturday devotions are all interlinked to help expediate the Triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

 

Five First Saturday Devotion

Why did Our Lady ask for the Five First Saturday devotion? Our Blessed Lord answered that question when He appeared to Sr. Lucia. He explained that it was because of the five offenses and blasphemies against the Immaculate Heart of Mary, namely:

(1) blasphemies against her Immaculate Conception,

(2) against her perpetual virginity,

(3) against the divine and spiritual maternity of Mary,

(4) blasphemies involving the rejection and dishonouring of her images, and

(5) the neglect of implanting in the hearts of children a knowledge and love of this Immaculate Mother.

Our Lady of Fatima requested the daily Rosary and Five First Saturday devotion. “If what I ask is done, many souls will be saved.” Since Her request is largely ignored, we continue to witness many wars and persecutions of the Church, including the Holy Father. The good are being martyred and various nations are annihilated. (The daily Rosary and the Five First Saturday devotion bring graces for the individuals, families, Bishops and Priests, religious and for each nation).

The role of the Priest and the Laity 

The key elements of the Five First Saturday devotion are captured with the story of the child Jesus appearing to Sr Lucia only emphasises the urgency of the Five First Saturday devotion for our time. What makes this devotion so beautiful is that Our Lady invites her beloved priests to promote it in the parish. Without the priests, three components of this devotion cannot take place namely: Confession, Mass and Holy Communion. Our Lady wisely incorporated the priests in this grace filled devotion to protect Her flock, just like Our Lady did over 2000 years ago for the first apostles.

Five First Saturday Devotion role of the priest is to:    

  1. Hear Confession: The confession can be made eight days before or after the First Saturday, provided that Holy Communion is received in the state of grace and that it should be offered in reparation.
  2. Offer Mass and Holy Communion: Before receiving Holy Communion, it is likewise necessary to offer the Mass in reparation to Our Lady.

Five First Saturday Devotion role of the laity is to:

  1. Go to confession, attend Mass, receive Holy Communion and recite the Holy Rosary and to do 15-minute meditation:-To comply with the request of Our Blessed Mother, it must be offered in reparation and said properly while meditating. Also offered in reparation, the meditation may embrace one or more mysteries; it may include all, taken together or separately. This meditation should be the richest of any meditation, because Our Lady promised to be present when she said “…those who keep me company….”.

To those who faithfully follow Our Lady’s requests for the Five First Saturdays, she has made a wonderful promise: “I promise to assist at the hour of death with the graces necessary for salvation.”.

After completing the Five First Saturdays, one may continue the devotion simply to console the Immaculate Heart of Our Lady. A tender love of Our Blessed Mother will lead one to do all he/she can to make reparation for the sins which pierce Her Immaculate Heart.

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The Daily Rosary  

For six months from May to October, on the 13th day in 1917, the Virgin Mary invited us to recite the daily Rosary, in which the three children would be made humble witnesses to the heart of God in a long-suffering World War I at that time.

The life of Sr Lucia, Francisco and Jacinta, the little shepherds of Fatima, is a love story of grace and mercy from Heaven to all of humanity. The heavenly peace plan for the world was given to three children to spread the power and beauty of the Most Holy Rosary.

The Carmel Nuns in Coimbra recently shared the following insight with us.“The spontaneous reply by Lucia, Jacinta and Francisco in 1917, which ‘the Lady welcomed as the first fruits of Her Message, that is confirmed by the Virgin with an immense light that penetrated the innermost parts of the three children, making them see themselves in this light that was God. This light, in which they receive in June 1917 will also prepared them to receive the secret that was revealed in July 1917: in a succession of images unveiled by the Lady, the children understood that God is not indifferent to our human history; that sin is indifferent to the heart of God; that God’s heart is still merciful and is always in search of humanity entangled in their terrible events.”

One hundred years later pilgrims come to Fatima in hope and turn their gaze to Our Lady of the Rosary. This is, and should be the refuge of millions of human suffering. Today the world continues to rage wars and there is the gigantic struggle of good against evil. This is how the 20th century came to be known.

Those of us who are open to receive the light from the heart of God are invited by Our Lady to join in the daily Rosary, the Five First Saturday devotion and by offering their sacrifice in reparation of sin. What each nation needs in the 21st century is God’s Grace and Mercy.

Pope Francis and the ‘Urgency of the Hour’  

We  recall in the Holy Scriptures how Jonah was sent to Nineveh to preach a warning and a message of repentance to the very sinful people of that city, boldly preaching Forty days and the great city of Nineveh will be destroyed”. To their great credit, together the Ninevites fasted and repented of their sins and “When God saw what they did, how they turned from their evil way, God repented of the evil which he had said he would do to them; and he did not carry it out”. [Jonah 3: 1-10]

For our time, Pope Francis has issued from (8th December 2015 to 20th November 2016) the Jubilee Year of Mercy for the whole world. This special occasion is normally celebrated every 25 years in order to allow each generation to experience at least one during their lifetime. This time the special year was called nine years earlier than required indicating ‘the urgency of the hour’ for the Mercy of God. After being elected Pope, Francis said “Mercy is the best thing we can feel; it changes the world.” In this regard, Pope Francis is following the path of Jonah, asking us all to repent, repair our lives and do penance. One of the central messages of Fatima according to Servant of God Sr Lucia is summarised in the last words of Our Lady in Fatima on 13th October 1917, “Do not offend the Lord our God anymore, because He is already so much offended”.

Like the Ninevites, all nations need to contemplate the mystery of mercy so that we may become a more effective sign of the Father’s action in our lives. Pope Francis suggests for the Jubilee Year to invocate Jesus with a short prayer “Merciful Jesus, I trust in You.” or “Jesus, Son of the Living God, have mercy on me a sinner”.

Pope Francis has also granted the Jubilee Indulgence for those who do corporal works of mercy: to feed the hungry, give drink to the thirsty, clothe the naked, welcome the stranger, heal the sick, visit the imprisioned, bury the dead, and also those who do spiritual works of mercy: to counsel the doubtful, instruct the ignorant, admonish sinners, comfort the afflicted forgive offences, bear patiently those who do us ill and pray for the living and the dead.

St Faustina:

Taken from her diary, Saint Faustina reminds us what God wants for our time.  To Saint Faustina Kowalska Jesus told her: “In the Old Covenant I sent prophets wielding thunderbolts to My people. Today I am sending you with My Mercy to the people of the whole world. I do not want to punish suffering mankind, but I desire to heal it, pressing it to My Merciful Heart. I use punishment when they themselves force Me to do so; My hand is reluctant to take hold of the sword of justice. Before the Day of Justice I am sending the Day of Mercy. (#1588)…..“I am prolonging the time of mercy for the sake of sinners. But woe to them if they do not recognize this time of My visitation” [Diary of St. Faustina, # 1160]

An open invitation

We encourage Irish Bishops, Priests and various religious groups like the Legion of Mary, Alliance of The Two Hearts, World Fatima Apostolate and Marian Movement of Priests to double their efforts to spread the Five First Saturdays and daily rosary devotions during the Jubilee Year of Mercy / 100th anniversary of Fatima in 2016 / 2017. We invite the laity to promote and display the Five First Saturday devotion in their community, so that God’s graces and mercy is more widely known and loved.

In answer to the call by Pope Francis, The Call to Fatima team is available to give parish presentation on Fatima in 2016. Sr Lucia’s books / DVD’s are also available srluciacalltofatima@gmail.com or by phone + 353-87-2229135 Blog www.thecalltofatima.wordpress.com

 

Spiritual exercises for Lent:Day 7

Spiritual exercises for Lent:Day 7

 Peace be with you!

-And with your Spirit!

Today, if we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other-that man, that woman, that child is my brother or my sister. If everyone could see the image of God in his neighbour, do you think we would still need tanks and generals?

                                                                                                Mother Teresa of Calcutta

Please pray for peace in the world!

Happy Christmas to you all

An Irish Christmas Blessing

The light of the Christmas star to you
The warmth of home and hearth to you
The cheer and good will of friends to you
The hope of a childlike heart to you
The joy of a thousand angels to you
The love of the Son and God’s peace to you.

Dear The Call to Fatima blog readers,

Wishing you a very joyful, peaceful and blessed  Christmas to you and all your families!

May the birth of Jesus Child transpire your hearts, so you can bring the Good News to all the nations!

                                                            Warmest Winter Greetings,

                                                         The Call to Fatima team

The Power of Prayer by Sister Lucia

Prayer is necessary for all, and we must all pray, whether our prayer is vocal, mental or contemplative.
Vocal prayer– that is addressed to God in words.
Mental prayer– talk to God about the subject on which you are meditating, for example, an increase in faith, humility, charity or a spirit of sacrifice, in order to overcome our repugnances and difficulties, defects and temptations.
Contemplative prayer– even closer intimacy with God, in which those practising in it enter more deeply into presence of God within them, abandoning themselves more intimately to the work of the grace, light and love of God within them. Wrapped in a supernatural atmosphere, the soul allows itself to be imbued, raised up and transformed by the action of God within it, purifying and absorbing it.

There is another kind of prayer: it is the “Prayer of our work”, of the performance of all the duties in our state in life in a spirit of humble submission to God, because it was He who imposed on us the law of work.
There is nothing on earth which can be compared to the happiness experienced by a soul in intimate union with God!
“Ask and it will be given to you, seek and you shall find, knock and it will be opened to you (Mt7, 7-8)

Ash Wednesday, 9th March 2011

Ash Wednesday is a day of repentance and it marks the beginning of Lent, 40 days of prayer, fasting, works of charity and silence, because in silence we can meet God more often.

Take your time to read the Bible more to understand a Word of God, encourage others to pray, for example, start a family Rosary, if it is not yet in your family, watch not the Television, but religious films and documentaries, give a hand to those who are looking for help and support, try to escape noise and hassle to be in quite with Jesus in the Most Holy Sacrament, perhaps you have a possibility to attend daily Mass or go to the retreat, all we want to say is, treat yourself spiritually. Your soul is worth it to have a spiritual renewal during this special Lent time!

Have a blessed and spiritually fulfilled 40 days!

Catholic Conference on Fatima at University College Cork

Catholic Conference on Fatima

The Call to Fatima

“Lead all souls to heaven”

by William A. Thomas

The first ever conference on the Call to Fatima was held at University College Cork on Saturday the 30th of October 2010. This conference came about as a result of a workshop which was organised by Miss Solvita Kivlina on the 4th anniversary of the death of Sister Lucy on the 14th of February 2009 at All Hallows College in Dublin.

The Conference was opened by Father Michael Maher SM who is a Marist priest and who has a passionate devotion to Our Lady. He explained to delegates that the apparitions of Our Lady in Fatima in 1917 to three young children are probably the most dramatic and urgent intervention of Our Lady to suffering humanity, broken by sin and rejection of God’s love and salvation.

three little shepherds of Fatima 1917The three children chosen by Heaven to deliver this message were Lucia Dos Santos and her cousins Jacinta and Francisco Marto who were brother and sister aged 9, 8, and 6 respectively. The first apparitions happened in 1916 when an Angel appeared to them and taught them several profound prayers that they should recite informing them that the “Hearts of Jesus and Mary were attentive to the voice of their supplications.”

The Angel who described himself as the Angel of Portugal appeared on two more occasions to prepare the children to “offer sacrifices continually to the Most High” and to make everything that they did a sacrifice which was offered in reparation “for the sins by which God is offended and as a petition for the conversation of sinners.” On the 13th of May in 1917 Our Lady appeared to the three young children who were minding sheep at the Cova da Iria, which was a very large field in Fatima not far from Aljustrel where the children lived.

Father Michael Maher, narrator in The Call to Fatima film www.thecalltofatima.com After the introductory talk Father Maher led the delegates in reciting the holy Rosary while giving passionate meditations on each mystery, admonishing delegates to never abandon the Rosary. In between each decade world renowned Irish soprano Louis Irvine sang sacred songs to the delight of the delegates who were moved by the beauty of her voice and her dedication to her music which gave great honour to Our Lady.

The Conference had some 400 delegates from every corner of Ireland north and south, and who were all enrolled in the Brown Scapular once the holy Rosary was completed. Delegates were also told that 9 nine priest were available for confessions and that a special chapel had been prepared for Eucharistic adoration throughout the day.

Conference organiser was Thomas McCormack a Dublin based Film Producer and Managing Director of Euro Finance Group whose motto is “When goodness is put before profit.” He told delegates that Sister Lucy had received millions of letters throughout her life asking questions related to the message of Fatima. He explained that from the time of the apparitions in 1917 to the day she died in 2005 at the age of 97, many people were concerned by various aspects of their faith, their lives and their involvement or lack thereof in the life and mission of the Church.

Thomas McCormack, the producer / director of The Call to Fatima film Sister Lucy had decided to write a book entitled “Calls from the Message of Fatima.” This book McCormack said “summarised all the questions that people had and were continuing to ask about their faith and what if any, had Fatima to do with them” he said. The book, he continued was her response to the millions of letters which she wanted to respond to personally to but was unable, so with the permission of the Holy See, Sister Lucy put pen to paper and wrote in the style of a long letter, addressed to all those who had written to her concerning their doubts, desires and difficulties, and in living up with greater fidelity what was asked of them from Heaven. The most important message of this book Thomas Mc Cormack told attentive delegates was contained on page 207 of the 304 page book, which concerned the 10 commandments. He went on to say that this call was the kernel and chief aim of the message of Fatima. “Sister Lucy was told by Our Lady to learn how to read, in order that she could write down the message and transmit it to the Church, who would give it its full approval before giving the message to the entire world- sadly he said only 4% of the world’s population know about it.

In speaking to the children in Fatima, he went on, Our Lady told them” I will tell you who I am and what I want” and later she would reveal Herself as the Lady of the Rosary. Ironically, McCormack stated “that in the last show of “Questions and Answers” hosted by John Bowman of RTE, the audience was asked what Ireland should do now that it was facing the abyss- to which the unanimous answer was that we should return to the 10 commandments and to prayer.

Therefore the laity has a big role to play in promoting the faith in parishes and in other areas he said. “I have taken this book the “Calls” of Sister Lucy and have put its essential contents in DVD film and translated it into 12 languages for the benefit of those who don’t read or don’t want to read” said an impassioned McCormack “so that the important message of Fatima is spread throughout the world for the Glory of God, the honour of Our Lady and the salvation of souls. The book and DVD “Calls to Fatima” have the full authorisation and approval of the Sacred Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, the Carmelite Nuns of Coimbra, and the Sacred Sanctuary of Fatima.

The DVD recently won first prize at the Saint Maximillian Kolbe International Film Festival. Delegates to the Conference were also given a gift pack containing a rosary beads, scapular hymn sheet and prayers.

Sister Angela Coelho, Vice-Postulator for Blessed Jacinta and Francisco The main guest speaker was Sister Angela de Fatima Coelho, who is not only a religious Sister but a medical doctor and has been appointed by the Holy See as Vice-Postulator of Blessed Francisco and Jacinta Marto who were both beatified by the Venerable Servant of God, Pope John Paul II (The Great) on the 13th of May in 2000 in Fatima.

Having introduced herself in perfect English and with a most wonderful personality she tells delegates about “her children” Jacinta and Francisco. “the main source of what we know about Francisco and Jacinta comes from Sister Lucy” she said, “but there were other sources like their family and the parish priest of Fatima Father Manuel Ferreira but it was Sister Lucy who knew them better than everyone” she said.

“There are two doors into the Fatima message one is the “Calls to Fatima” and the other is the “lives and understanding of the little children to whom Our Lady entrusted the message” said Sister Angela. Noting that Pope John Paul II called Fatima not only the “School of Mary” but the “School of Sanctity” to which we are called.”

Later Sister described that what the children did was enough to become saints, that is, they just did what Our Lady had asked them to and that as Saints they are models for us to imitate. “ We are just waiting now for one approved miracle to petition the Holy Father to canonise these two children who will be the youngest saints ever canonised by the Catholic Church, all the other work is done – We have one miracle which we are investigating at the moment, but I am waiting for something more profound and obvious so that there can be no doubts.”

In summing up the lives of Jacinta and Francisco Sister Angela told the delegates that the children of Fatima were just normal kids who worked hard and played, doing their household chores and being obedient to their parents. Jacinta she said was “over-sensitive with games and as such, games could only be played according to the rules of Jacinta.” However after the apparitions of Our Lady, which endured for 13 years in the case of Sister Lucy until 1929 in Tuy, the children accepted that the centre of their lives was no longer themselves but Our Lady and through Her, Jesus.

Quoting again from Pope John Paul II‘s book on the Rosary, Sister Angela told the conference that in praying the Rosary, the Pope called it his daily meeting with Mary. The profound changes that took place in the lives of the children of Fatima came about through the power of the Rosary and the Lady of the Rosary. Francisco was so moved by what the Angel told him to “Console your God” that after this, the young 9 year old would spend two hours in silent adoration before the Blessed Sacrament in his local parish Church.

Francisco, Sister Angela stated “received sufficient graces that he could understand the hierarchy of truths about God- when asked if he loved the Angel, he said he did, but he loved our Lady more and then again he loved Jesus even more than that, and that he experienced Jesus in his heart following that beautiful light that came into his heart from the hands of Our Blessed Lady. Noting that Our Lady had asked the children is they would undertake to suffer in reparation to God for the terrible sins of humanity and to make sacrifices for the conversion of sinners, especially after the vision of hell and with it the Devil and souls who had died in the state of mortal sin “The children responded with an immediate yes” said Sister Angela “because Jesus offers His Cross to his friends” What followed saw the three children arrested and placed in jail for 3 days of mental torture having being told they would be burned alive in a big fire.

The children suffered much abuse afterwards by unbelieving crowds of people who came day and night looking for them. But they knew what was going on Sister Angela and offered it up. Eventually Francisco died at home surrounded by his family but assured as was Jacinta that Our Lady would come for them and bring them to heaven.

Jacinta no longer over sensitive, but now offering to undertake even more sufferings especially for the Holy Father, whom she had seen alone in his chapel with his hands on his face and he was crying, later she saw him kneeling in front of a statue of Mary praying and finally as all three children saw “the Bishop in White” who was killed by soldiers.

Jacinta suffered and died alone in Lisbon in an isolation ward of a hospital offering up her sufferings right until the last minute when Our Lady fulfilled Her promise and came for her and brought her straight to heaven Sister Angela told a tearful conference who were deeply moved by the inside story of the love and dedication of the little seers of Fatima.

Sister Lucia dos Santos at the Carmel Monastery in Coimbra “Sister Lucy had her share of sufferings also” Sister Angela told the conference, who in place of Doctor Branka Paul, who was Sisters Lucy’s personal Doctor for the last 15 years of her life and who could not attend the conference due to the fact that her own mother was dying in hospital, gave her message. “She was told by the bishop of Fatima that she would have to leave home, take a new name, go to another country and never tell anyone who she was, and in addition to that, never to write directly to her family but only through a designated person- This type of suffering was very hard and Lucy didn’t want to do it, she cried day and night at the thought, and promised to disobey the bishop, however Sister continued, Lucy ran back to the Cova and cried, telling Our Lady that she would disobey the bishop- When Our Lady came, and placing Her hand on Lucy’s shoulder, reminded Lucy of her promise to make sacrifices for the conversation of sinners, Lucy did what the Bishop had requested.

Finally Sister Angela referred to the apparition of the Blessed Trinity and Our Lady in Tuy in Spain in and the request of Our Lady for a new devotion that God wanted for the world and that was devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

Part of this devotion is to go to Mass on the first five Saturday’s of the month, sacramental confession, recite the holy Rosary, while meditating on its mysteries for at least 15 minutes and to receive holy communion that is to be offered up in reparation for all the blasphemies, sacrileges and outrages by which the Immaculate Heart of Mary is offended. This Sister Lucy of Jesus and of the Immaculate Heart of Mary did until the day Our Lady and Jacinta and Francisco came for her on the 13th of February 2005 at the age of 97.

The Irish bishops have asked for a “Year of Renewal” for Ireland to include Adoration, Confession, prayer and Reparation, it is a pity that they did not recommend the book and DVD “Calls to Fatima” as a personal companion to that year of renewal because this book encompasses all that they ask in a most eminent way.

The conference concluded with benediction and holy mass and in keeping with that beautiful Fatima tradition delegates waved their white handkerchiefs at the departing statue of Our Lady of Fatima which was brought to Cork by devotees from the diocese of Kerry. Many delegates asked when the next conference might be, and early indications are that it will be held in Dublin in May of 2011.

Further information can be obtained from; The Call to Fatima, 32 Manor Street, Dublin 7. Ireland .Telephone ( 00353) 01 8690039. Fax (00353) 1 8690336.

Website/// http://www.thecalltofatima.com

E-mail /// info@eurofinancegroup.ie

Blog/// http://www.thecalltofatima.wordpress.com

Prayer for the Church in Ireland

Our Lady of Knock, Queen of Ireland, Co.MayoPrayer for the Church in Ireland

God of our fathers,
renew us in the faith which is our life and salvation,
the hope which promises forgiveness and interior renewal,
the charity which purifies and opens our hearts
to love you, and in you, each of our brothers and sisters.

Lord Jesus Christ,
may the Church in Ireland renew her age-old commitment
to the education of our young people in the way of truth and goodness, holiness and generous service to society.

Holy Spirit, comforter, advocate and guide,
inspire a new springtime of holiness and apostolic zeal
for the Church in Ireland.

May our sorrow and our tears,
our sincere effort to redress past wrongs,
and our firm purpose of amendment
bear an abundant harvest of grace
for the deepening of the faith
in our families, parishes, schools and communities,
for the spiritual progress of Irish society,
and the growth of charity, justice, joy and peace
within the whole human family.

To you, Triune God,
confident in the loving protection of Mary,
Queen of Ireland, our Mother,
and of Saint Patrick, Saint Brigid and all the saints,
do we entrust ourselves, our children,
and the needs of the Church in Ireland.

Amen.

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