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 FATIMA.....The beginning ....
 Devotion to the Immaculate Heart
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Stormy
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Posted - Jul 09 2005 :  1:03:48 PM  Show Profile Send Stormy a Private Message
Devotion to the Immaculate Heart

The intimate association of the Immaculate Heart of the Mother with the Sacred Heart of the Son, indeed their unity in the Plan of the Father, is the essential doctrinal feature of the Message of Fátima. From the first message of the Angel we are pointed to it.

Pray with me. "My God, I believe, I adore, I hope and I love you, and I ask pardon for those who do not believe, do not adore, do not hope and do not love you." The Hearts of Jesus and Mary are attentive to your prayers.

Here we see that it is the Hearts of Jesus and Mary which await, and mediate, the prayer of reparation to God requested by the Angel. This can only be understood by a profound reflection on the doctrines of the Trinity, the Incarnation and the Redemption. By such a reflection the objective reality of Mary's role within the economy of salvation can be understood.

We must first start with the Trinity as it exists within Itself, apart from its works. The doctrine of the Divine Processions tells us that Life and Love, Truth and Goodness, all that the Persons of the Trinity are by their sharing of the one Divine nature, proceeds from the Father, to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit (the Spirit of the Father and the Son). From all eternity these eternal processions of the Son and the Holy Spirit take place, with the Eternal Father as their ultimate Source.

This Order of Procession within God establishes the Order of the Missions of the Divine Persons, that is of their external works - Creation, Redemption, Sanctification/Glorification. God who is the same "yesterday, today and forever" acts outside Himself according to the reality of His own interior life, stamping His works with the image of that Life. Thus, these works proceed from the Father, through the Son and are effected by the power of their Love, the Holy Spirit. This Order is why all formal liturgical prayer is directed "to the Father, through the Son, in the Holy Spirit," as that is how all good things come to us.

After the Fall of Adam and Eve, the Father promised a new Woman from whom would come a new Adam, the Redeemer to undo the sin of the old Adam (Genesis 3:15). In the fullness of time the Father effected the Incarnation of the Son by the Holy Spirit (Luke 1:35). This Divine Spirit brought about the union of the human nature, taken from Mary alone, and the Divine nature, in the Second Person of the Trinity, the Word. It was thus from Mary's Immaculate flesh, preserved from original and person sin by the foreseen merits of her Son and "full of grace" (Luke 1:28), that the New Adam was created. The renewal of the universe was begun in the new Adam and the New Eve, the Woman and her Seed, as all the Fathers of the Church testify.

We thus begin to see the intrinsic connection of Jesus and Mary, a connection that transcends natural motherhood, since its purpose from the beginning is a supernatural one, the Redemption of the human race. Thus, there is nothing merely natural about the conception of the Mother or the generation of the Son. Both are supernatural, as was the creation of Adam and Eve in Divine Justice. Mary, therefore, immediately assumes the supernatural role assigned her, to accompany her Son at every step of the Redemption as the first redeemed (pre-redeemed, as has been said) and His most faithful disciple (Matthew 12:48-50, Luke 1:48, John 2:5). Her motherhood is not a natural one, nor are her sons natural sons, but supernatural one (Isaiah 7:14, 1 Samuel 2:1-10, Luke 1:46-55), subjects of the supernatural Kingdom in which she is the Queen Mother, since she is Mother of the King. For this reason from the throne of the Cross the King confided the beloved disciple, and every disciple (we are all beloved), to the motherhood of the Woman, the New Eve (John 19:27).

The mysterious role of the New Eve also has an eschatological dimension. This is the branch of theology dealing with the Last Things (Death, Judgment, Heaven, Hell), and thus also with the destiny of the creation as a whole, the New Heavens and the New Earth (2 Peter 3:13, Revelation 21). The Church, the Bride of Christ, is not yet fully formed, all the redeemed have not yet come into her. At the End the numbers of the just will be complete and the Marriage Feast of the Lamb will take place, when God will be "all in all" (1 Corinthians 15:28, Revelation 19:9). We can only faintly conceive the degree of union with God and participation in His own Divine Life that this will entail. The Lord reveals this union as nuptial, like the complete sharing of Bridegroom and Bride. This is why the Sacrament of Matrimony is a this-worldly sign pointing to the union of love between Christ and the Church (Ephesians 5:21-33).

This eschatological dimension of the relationship of Christ and the Church is already fully realized in the union of Jesus and Mary in Heaven. Mary has achieved (including bodily glory) what the rest of the Church is moving toward. The New Adam and the New Eve have gone before us and already hold everything in common which will be shared with all the just in the Wedding Feast. This no more devalues Christ's unique role as the God-man who alone can merit infinitely, then does the common goods of husband and wife devalues the role of the breadwinner. They are of one heart and one mind, a bond of love which is not possessive. This nuptial reality is beautifully shown by the symbolism of the Two Hearts associated with the message of Fátima.

The rest of the messages which touch upon the role of the Immaculate Heart reinforce the sense already implicit in the first message of the Angel. In the second apparition he would say, associating Mary explicitly with the Plan of Salvation,

Pray. Pray. the Hearts of Jesus and Mary have merciful designs upon you.

Finally, in the third apparition he will teach the children a prayer of reparation that implores of the Trinity the conversion of poor sinners,

through the infinite merits of His Sacred Heart and the Immaculate Heart of Mary...

This prayer, much clearer in the Portuguese and without the equivocation of some English translations ("intercession" of the Immaculate Heart), suggests the prefect union of the two Hearts described above. What are Christ's by divinity and redemptive purchase are Mary's by grace and cooperation. Nothing is lacking to their union, save the absorption of the creature into the creator. Just as in the union of Christ's human and divine natures each nature remains what it is, the human sweetly subject to the divine. So Mary remains ever the creature subject to her Divine Spouse. We will likewise remain creatures when we come to share in this ineffable union of Bridegroom and Bride in eternity.

To Jesus through Mary,
Craige
"Now there stood by the Cross of Jesus, MARY, HIS MOTHER" who by Her perfect assistance at HIS FIRST MASS on Calvary became our model...to whom we now offer the prayer that she may help us to stand more worthily by the "CROSS OF JESUS" Our Sunday Mass.

Come Holy Spirit ...Come by the means of the powerful intercession of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, your well beloved Spouse.

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Posted - Oct 25 2008 :  8:47:06 PM  Show Profile Send n/a a Private Message
DEVOTION TO THE IMMACULATE HEART OF MARY:
"Jesus wishes to establish devotion to my Immaculate Heart in the world. I promise salvation to those who embrace it." (June 13, 1917)

FIRST SATURDAY DEVOTIONS, which include:

reception of Holy Communion, and Confession (within 8 days before or after)
pray five decades of the Rosary
spend 15 minutes in meditation on the mysteries of the Rosary.
(All the above to be offered up in reparation for sins and ingratitude against the Immaculate Heart of Our Lady.)
OFFERING IN REPARATION THE SACRIFICES, TRIALS AND CROSSES OF LIFE, especially those sacrifices involved in keeping God’s Commandments, and in fulfilling the duties of one’s state in life — offering them through the Immaculate Heart of Mary in reparation to the Divine Majesty so offended by sin, and for the conversion of sinners.
“Sacrifice yourselves for sinners and say often whenever you make a sacrifice: ‘O Jesus, it is for love of You, for the conversion of sinners, and in reparation for the offenses committed against the Immaculate Heart of Mary.' " (Our Lady—July 13, 1917)
“Pray much and make sacrifices for sinners, for many souls go to hell because there is no one to make sacrifices for them." (Our Lady—August 19, 1917)

CONSECRATION TO THE IMMACULATE HEART OF MARY. Any formula may be used which expresses a sincere confiding of oneself without reserve.



Grace Mizzi
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Posted - Oct 25 2008 :  8:48:24 PM  Show Profile Send n/a a Private Message
The message of Fatima
The following is a brief consideration of Our Lady’s three requests: penance, prayer and devotion to her Immaculate Heart.
PENANCE

In the Gospels the word penance means a conversion of one’s life, a turning away from sin, and a turning back to God. As Our Lady insisted at Fatima: “Men must amend their lives, and ask pardon for their sins. . . . They must no longer offend Our Lord, Who is already so much offended.” The Fatima message is a call for men to give up sinful practices which grieve God and draw down His chastisements on the world, and to make reparation for them. Commenting on Our Lady’s request for penance, Sr. Lucia wrote: “The part of the last apparition which has remained most deeply imprinted on my heart is the prayer of our heavenly Mother begging us not to offend any more Almighty God, Who is already so much offended.”

Jacinta, too, shortly before her death remarked: “If men only knew what eternity is, how they would make all possible efforts to amend their lives . . . mortification and sacrifice give great pleasure to Our Divine Lord."

In August of 1917 Our Lady told the children, “pray much and make sacrifices for sinners, for many souls go to hell because there is no one to make sacrifices for them.” As to the kinds of sacrifices Our Lady was asking, she revealed to Sr. Lucia on one occasion: “The good Lord is allowing Himself to be appeased . . . but He Himself complains most bitterly and sorrowfully about the small number of souls in His grace who are willing to renounce whatever the observance of His laws requires of them.“

“Many persons,” Sr. Lucia explained, “feeling that the word penance implies great austerities, and not feeling that they have the strength for great sacrifices, become discouraged and continue a life of lukewarmness and sin.” Then she said Our Lord explained to her: “The sacrifice required of every person is the fulfillment of his duties in life and the observance of My law. This is the penance that I now seek and require.”

In this materialistic culture in which we live, almost heroic virtue is required to be faithful to the duties of the Christian life. Yet, over and above those sacrifices “required of every person,” the children of Fatima practiced many little acts of mortification and renunciation on their own initiative. It is hoped that many devotees of Our Lady will not be content with the minimum required and will not pass up opportunities of voluntary mortification, placing in the hands of Our Lady the fruits of the little trials, frustrations and irritations of each day accepted with patience and resignation.

It was in this same spirit that the Angel spoke to the children in 1916: “Offer up everything in your power as a sacrifice to the Lord in reparation for the sins by which He is offended, and in supplication for the conversion of sinners . . . More than all else, accept and bear with resignation the sufferings that God may send you.”

PRAYER

Besides a call to penance Fatima is in a special way a call for the Rosary. So central is the Rosary to the Fatima message that Our Lady chose to identify herself as “The Lady of the Rosary.” In each of the six apparitions she asked for the daily Rosary, and especially as an instrument of world peace. As she revealed in the third apparition: “You must recite the Rosary every day in honor of Our Lady of the Rosary to obtain peace for the world and the end of the war for only she can obtain this.” In this Our Lady renewed her request for the prayer she gave to the Church centuries before, a prayer that has proven a powerful weapon against the enemies of Christianity as history testifies.

When asked about the importance of the Rosary, Sr. Lucia responded: “My impression is that the Rosary is of greatest value not only according to the words of Our Lady at Fatima, but according to the effects of the Rosary one sees throughout history. My impression is that Our Lady wanted to give ordinary people, who might not know how to pray, this simple method of getting closer to God.”

The Rosary is basically a gospel prayer, and for those who pray it properly, it is, as Sr. Lucia said, “a simple method of getting closer to God.” But to pray it properly requires that each decade be a reflection on some aspect of the joyful, sorrowful or glorious mysteries of our redemption. Without that meditation, the Rosary would become monotonous repetition. As Pope Paul VI wrote in MARIALIS CULTUS: “Without this (contemplation) the Rosary is a body without a soul, and its recitation is in danger of becoming a mechanical repetition of formulas.” In praying the Rosary we can well take Our Lady as a model, for as the Scriptures tell us, “Mary kept all these words, pondering them in her Heart.”

The Rosary is a simple form of prayer that can be prayed by the young or old, the learned or the uneducated, the saint or the sinner. Each can adapt it to his or her own capacity. It is so pleasing to Our Lady, because it brings us to review again and again the life of Christ, the mysteries of our redemption. As Pope Paul VI pointed out, it not only recalls to mind these mysteries, but stimulates the will to draw from them the norms of living. That is, it not only points out the way, but helps us to obtain the graces needed to follow in that way.

After repeatedly asking for the daily Rosary, and identifying herself as "The Lady of the Rosary,” the Blessed Mother terminated the final apparition by showing the children three separate tableaux symbolizing the entire message of the Rosary. The first was a vision of the Holy family — representing the joyful mysteries; the second a vision of Our Lady of Sorrows — representing the sorrowful mysteries; and the third a vision of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel — representing the glorious mysteries.


The Rosary may seem like an insignificant thing in the light of the magnitude of the evils of today’s world, but it is the weapon given to us by Our Lady. She merely asks our cooperation, and she will do the rest. It is like the slingshot of David that killed the mighty enemy because the power of God was behind it. Thus, as the saying goes, he who prays the Rosary has the power of God in his hand.

DEVOTION TO THE IMMACULATE HEART OF MARY

In 1916, a year before the apparitions of Our Lady, the Angel of Peace appeared to the children to prepare them for things to come. “The Hearts of Jesus and Mary have designs of mercy for you,” he said. “Offer unceasingly to the Most High prayer and sacrifices.”

In the second apparition the following year (June 13) Our Lady let the children know that “Jesus wishes to establish throughout the world devotion to my Immaculate Heart.” Several times in the June and July apparitions Our Lady spoke of this devotion, as we shall see; and soon there began to burn in their hearts (especially Jacinta’s) a deep love for the Hearts of Jesus and Mary.

Shortly before Jacinta went to the hospital where she was to die, she said to Lucia: “In a short time now I am going to heaven. You are to stay here and say that God wishes to establish in the world the devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. . . . Tell everybody that God grants graces through the Immaculate Heart of Mary, and that they must ask them from her. Tell them that the Heart of Jesus wishes that by His side should be venerated the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Tell them to ask peace through the Immaculate Heart of Mary; God has placed it in her hands. Oh that I could put into the heart of everybody the flame that I feel burning within my breast and which makes me love so much the Heart of Jesus and the Heart of Mary.”

June 13, 1917

Lucia asked Our Lady if she would take them to heaven. Our Lady answered: “Yes, I will take Jacinta and Francisco soon. You, however, are to stay here a longer time. Jesus wants to use you to make me known and loved. He wants to establish the devotion to my Immaculate Heart in the world. I promise salvation to those who embrace it, and their souls will be loved by God as flowers placed by me before His throne.”

When Lucia asked if she were going to be left alone, Our Lady responded: “No, my daughter. Does this cause you to suffer a great deal? I will never leave you, my Immaculate Heart will be your refuge and the way that will lead you to God.”

As the Blessed Mother uttered these words she extended her hands and in the rays of light that shone from them, the children saw themselves as if submerged in the Divine presence. Jacinta and Francisco were on the side of the light that was ascending to Heaven, while Lucia was in the light that seemed diffused over all the earth. In the palm of her right hand was a Heart pierced with thorns; and the children understood that it was the Immaculate Heart of Mary, so offended by the sins of mankind and pleading for reparation.

July 13, 1917

“Sacrifice yourselves for sinners; and say often when you make some sacrifice, ‘My Jesus, it is for love of You, for the conversion of sinners, and in reparation for sins committed against the Immaculate Heart of Mary.'”

After showing the children a vision of hell, Our Lady said to them: “You have seen hell where the souls of poor sinners go. To save them, God wishes to establish throughout the world devotion to my Immaculate Heart. If people do as I shall ask many souls will be saved, and there will be peace. . . . But if people do not cease offending God . . . another and more terrible war will begin. When you see a night illumined by an unknown light, know that this is the great sign that God gives that the chastisement of the world for its many transgressions is at hand through war, famine, persecution of the Church and of the Holy Father."

“To prevent this, I shall come to ask the consecration of Russia to my Immaculate Heart, and Communions of reparation on the first Saturdays. If my requests are heard, Russia will be converted and there will be peace. If not, she will spread her errors throughout the world, fomenting wars and persecution of the Church. The good will suffer martyrdom; the Holy Father will suffer much; different nations will be annihilated. But in the end my Immaculate Heart will triumph. The Holy Father will consecrate Russia to me, which will be converted, and some time of peace will be granted to humanity."

NOTE: From the above, we must not think of the Five First Saturdays merely in terms of personal salvation, of receiving "at the hour of death the graces necessary for salvation;” but also in terms of world peace, of avoiding the terrible social consequences mentioned above by Our Lady.
December 10, 1925

The visits of Our Lady to Lucia did not end with those in 1917. In fact it was only through later apparitions that Lucia received permission to make known some of the messages revealed in 1917.

While Lucia was in her room at the convent of the Sisters of St. Dorothy, Our Lady and the Child Jesus appeared to her. Resting her right hand on Lucia’s shoulder, the Blessed Mother held in her other hand a Heart surrounded by sharp thorns. The Divine Child was the first to speak to Lucia: “Have pity on the Heart of your most Holy Mother. It is covered with thorns with which ungrateful men pierce it at every moment, and there is no one to remove them with an act of reparation.”

Then Our Lady made known her request for Communions of reparation: “My daughter, look at my Heart encircled with the thorns with which ungrateful men pierce it at every moment by their blasphemies and ingratitude. Do you at least try to console me and announce in my name that I promise to assist at the hour of death with the graces necessary for salvation all those who, on the first Saturday of five consecutive months, go to Confession and receive Holy Communion, recite the Rosary and keep me company for 15 minutes while meditating on the mysteries of the Rosary with the intention of making reparation to me.”


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Every sin, great and small, is an offense against God for which reparation must be made. Yet, so dear is the Heart of Mary to her Divine Son, and so much is He pained at the offenses and blasphemies against her Immaculate Heart that, as Fr. Thomas McGlynn, O.P. expresses in his book VISION OF FATIMA:

"God has told us now, through Fatima, that we can make reparation to Him if we repair the sufferings we have caused her. The Heart that received the fullness of participation in the divine life, that knew the affections of a mother for Jesus Christ during the years at Nazareth, that went through the agony of seeing Him die, that honors Him in heaven more than all the rest of creation, is now gloriously proclaimed by Him through Fatima."

CONSECRATION TO THE IMMACULATE HEART OF MARY
“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.”

By our consecration we promise to become dependent on Mary in all things: to offer all our prayers and oblations to God through Mary, and to seek every gift from God through Mary. And we do this with the greatest confidence. Since she is our mother, she knows our needs better than we; and since she is Queen of Heaven, she has immediate access to the infinite treasury of graces in the Kingdom of her Divine Son.

Mary is not only the Mother of Jesus, Son of the Eternal Father; she is also Mother of all the Father’s adopted children. As their Mother, she has been given the role of molding them into the likeness of Jesus.

Every work of grace, every increase of grace, is a work of the Holy Spirit; but as in the Incarnation of the Divine Word God used human instruments, so does He in the sanctification of each individual soul. As He chose Mary as the instrument through whom He would come to us, so He chose Mary as the instrument through whom we should go to Him. And both the mystery of God coming to us through Mary, and our being led to God through Mary, is a work of the Holy Spirit. So when we speak of Mary’s unique role in our sanctification, she is but the instrument the Holy Spirit uses in sharing with us the divine life of grace. It is in this sense that Mary fashions us into the likeness of Christ.

However, that this transformation — through Mary’s help — be accomplished in a notable degree, there must be an awareness of her role in our sanctification, a confidence in her maternal concern and in her power under God, a surrender of oneself into her hands, and a fervent, frequent and confident seeking of her aid. This usually comes through some form of consecration to the Mother of God.

At Fatima Our Lady asked for consecration to her Immaculate Heart, a consecration which, among other things, calls for the devotion of the Five First Saturdays, which includes the Rosary, meditation and Communions of reparation — all done in reparation to her Immaculate Heart. It involves a striving to fulfill her requests for prayer and sacrifices for the conversion of sinners and in reparation for offenses against the Divine Majesty. In a word, it involves a striving to fulfill all that she asked for at Fatima, and trying to bring others to heed her requests.

Living that consecration means becoming an apostle of Mary, striving to imitate her virtues, and to place in her hands the flowers of little sacrifices of reparation for the salvation of souls, so that we might strengthen her hand against the attacks of the Evil One, and hasten the day of the triumph of her Immaculate Heart. To everyone who makes that consecration and sincerely tries to live it, the words of Our Lady to the child Lucia at Fatima would also apply: “I will never leave you; my Immaculate Heart will be your refuge, and the way that will lead you to God.”

If consecration to Mary “tends essentially to union with Jesus, under the guidance of Mary,” as Pope Pius XII pointed out, we must remember that any gradual transformation into Christ requires a gradual loving acceptance of a greater share in His redeeming Cross.

So when we offer ourselves to Mary to lead us, to form us into the likeness of her Son, we are offering to let her lead us along the way of the Cross.

Our Blessed Mother’s great concern is the salvation of the souls of her children, many of whom are being lost. She looks for generous souls among her
MARY’S CALL to PRAYER AND PENANCE
by Pope John Paul II
The following is taken from the Homily by Pope John Paul II at Fatima, May 13, 1982, one year to the day after the attempt on his life in St. Peter’s square in Rome.

. . . . In the light of the mystery of Mary’s spiritual motherhood, let us seek to understand the extraordinary message, which began May 13, 1917, to resound throughout the world from Fatima, continuing for five months until October 13 of the same year.


Convert and repent
The Church has always taught and continues to proclaim that God’s revelation was brought to completion in Jesus Christ, who is the fullness of that revelation, and that “no new public revelation is to be expected before the glorious manifestation of our Lord.” (Dei Verbum, 4) The Church evaluates and judges private revelations by the criterion of conformity with that single public revelation.

If the Church has accepted the message of Fatima, it is, above all, because that message contains a truth and a call whose basic content is the truth and the call of the Gospel itself.

“Repent, and believe in the Gospel!” (Mk 1:15) These are the first words that the messiah addressed to humanity. The message of Fatima is, in its basic nucleus, a call to conversion and repentance, as in the Gospel. This call was uttered at the beginning of the 20th century and it was thus addressed particularly to this present century. The Lady of the message seems to have read with special insight the “signs of the times,” the signs of our time.

Recommends the Rosary
The call to repentance is a motherly one. At the same time it is strong and decisive. The love that “rejoices in the truth” (1 Cor. 13) is capable of being clear-cut and firm. The call to repentance is linked, as always, with a call to prayer. In harmony with the tradition of many centuries, the Lady of the message indicates the Rosary, which can rightly be defined as “Mary’s prayer,” the prayer in which she feels particularly united with us.

She herself prays with us. The Rosary prayer embraces the problems of the Church, of the See of Saint Peter, the problems of the whole world. In it we also remember sinners, that they may be converted and saved, and the souls in purgatory.

The words of the message were addressed to children, ages seven to ten. Children, like Bernadette of Lourdes, are particularly privileged in these apparitions of the Mother of God. Hence, the fact that also her language is simple, within the limits of their understanding. The children of Fatima became partners in dialogue with the Lady of the message and collaborators with her. One of them is still living.

When Jesus on the Cross said: “Woman, behold, your son," (Jn 19:26) in a new way He opened His mother’s Heart, the Immaculate Heart, and revealed to it the new dimensions and extent of the love to which she was called in the Holy Spirit by the power of the sacrifice of the Cross. . . .

In the light of a mother’s love, we understand the whole message of the Lady of Fatima. The greatest obstacle to man’s journey toward God is sin, perseverance in sin and, finally, denial of God. The deliberate blotting out of God from the world of human thought. The detachment from Him of the whole of man’s earthly activity. The rejection of God by man.

In reality, the eternal salvation of man is only in God. Man’s rejection of God, if it becomes definitive, leads logically to God’s rejection of man, to damnation. (Mt. 7:23;10:33)

Can the Mother, who . . . desires everyone’s salvation, keep silence on what undermines the very basis of their salvation? No, she cannot.

So, while the message of Our Lady of Fatima is a motherly one, it is also strong and decisive. It sounds severe. It sounds like John the Baptist speaking on the banks of the Jordan. It invites to repentance. It gives a warning. It calls to prayer. It recommends the Rosary.

The message is addressed to every human being. The love of the Savior’s Mother reaches every place touched by the work of salvation. Her care extends to every individual of our time and to all the societies, nations and peoples. Societies menaced by apostasy, threatened by moral degradation. The collapse of morality involves the collapse of societies.

Meaning of consecration
. . . . The heart of the Blessed Mother . . . calls us. She not only calls us to be converted; she calls us to accept her motherly help to return to the source of redemption.

Consecrating ourselves to Mary means accepting her help to offer ourselves and the whole of mankind to Him who is holy, infinitely holy. . . .

God’s holiness showed itself in the redemption of man, of the world, of the whole of mankind, and of the nations: a redemption brought about through the Sacrifice of the Cross. “For their sake I consecrate myself,” Jesus had said. (Jn 17:19)

By the power of the redemption the world and man have been consecrated. They have been consecrated to Him who is infinitely Holy. They have been offered and entrusted to Love itself, merciful Love.

The Mother of Christ calls us, invites us to join with the Church of the living God in the consecration of the world. In this act . . . mankind as a whole, the nations and each individual person are presented to the Eternal Father with the power of the redemption won by Christ. They are offered in the Heart of the Redeemer which was pierced on the Cross.

Rooted in the Gospel
The appeal of the Lady of the message of Fatima is so deeply rooted in the Gospel and the whole of Tradition that the Church feels that the message imposes a commitment on it.

It has responded through the Servant of God, Pius XII (whose episcopal ordination took place precisely on May 13, 1917), who consecrated the human race and especially the peoples of Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

Was not that consecration his response to. . . the call of Fatima?

In its dogmatic Constitution on the Church and its pastoral Constitution on the Church in the Modern World, the Second Vatican Council amply illustrated the reasons for the link between the Church and the world of today.

Furthermore, its teaching on Mary’s special place in the mystery of Christ and the Church bore mature fruit in Paul VI’s action in calling Mary "Mother of the Church," thus indicating more profoundly the nature of her union with the Church and of her care for the world, for mankind, for each human being and for all the nations. . . .

This brought a further deepening of understanding of the meaning of the act of consecrating that the Church is called upon to perform with the help of the heart of Christ’s mother and ours.

Many going astray
Today John Paul II, successor of Peter, continuer of the work of Pius, John, and Paul, and in particular heir of the Second Vatican Council, presents himself before the Mother of the Son of God in her shrine at Fatima. In what way does he come?

He presents himself, reading again with trepidation the motherly call to penance, to conversion, the ardent appeal of the Heart of Mary that resounded at Fatima in 1917. Yes, he reads it again with trepidation in his heart, because he sees how many people and societies — how many Christians — have gone in the opposite direction to the one indicated in the message of Fatima.

Sin has thus made itself firmly at home in the world and denial of God has become widespread in the ideologies, ideas and plans of human beings.

For this very reason the evangelical call to repentance and conversion, uttered in the Mother’s message, remains ever relevant. It is still more relevant than it was in 1917. It is still more urgent.

The successor of Peter presents himself here also as a witness to the immensity of human suffering, a witness to the almost apocalyptic menaces looking over the nations and mankind as a whole. He is trying to embrace these sufferings with his own weak human heart, as he places himself before the mystery of the Heart of the Mother, the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

In the name of these sufferings and with awareness of the evil that is spreading throughout the world and menacing the individual human being, the nations, mankind as a whole, Peter’s successor presents himself here with greater faith in the redemption of the world, in the saving Love that is always stronger, always more powerful than any evil.

My heart is oppressed when I see the sin of the world and the whole range of menaces gathering like a dark cloud over mankind, but it also rejoices with hope as I once more do what has been done by my predecessors, when they consecrated the world to the Heart of the Mother, when they consecrated to that Heart those peoples which particularly need to be consecrated. Doing this means consecrating the world to Him who is infinite Holiness.

This Holiness means redemption. It means a love more powerful than evil. No ‘’sin of the world” can ever overcome this Love.

Once more this act is being done, Mary’s appeal is not for just once. Her appeal must be taken up by generation after generation, in accordance with the ever new “signs of the times.” It must be unceasingly returned to. It must ever be taken up anew. . . .

Yes, truly we can repeat: “O daughter, you are blessed by the Most High God above all women on earth . . . walking in the straight path before our God . . . you have avenged our ruin.” (Judith 13:18-20)

Truly, indeed, you are blessed.

Yes, here and throughout the Church, in the heart of every individual and in the world as a whole may you be blessed, O Mary, our sweet Mother.



Grace Mizzi
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Send Oh Lord Holy Apostles into your church“Christ has no body but yours, no hands butyours, no feet but yours.Yours are the eyes through which Christ’scompassion must look upon the world.Yours are the feet with which He is to go about
doing good.Yours are the hands with which He is to bless us now.”St. Theresa of Avila
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