Damien F. Mackey
No, with error now unleashed, the problem had become universal. ‘Russia’s errors’ had now become the world’s errors, and so the entire world now (Russia included) had needed to be consecrated to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.
One hundred years of Fatima (1917-2017), as it now stands, afford us with an ideal opportunity for pausing and reflecting back on how history has unfolded in connection with the series of Marian apparitions at the Cova da Iria (Fatima, Portugal), and in Spain (Pontevedra and Tuy). And the best is yet to come.
But perhaps, also, the worst - though we now have the three privileged seers, Lucia, Jacinta and Francisco, in heaven (a further promise of Our Lady) - two of whom (Jacinta and Francisco) have already been canonised as saints - to assist us in our sorely troubled times.
History has witnessed, fully in accordance with what Our Lady of the Rosary had foretold at Fatima in 1917, the end of one World War and then another, far worse one preceded by the ‘strange and unknown light’ (seen in 1938). See my:
The Great Solar Miracle: Fatima October 13, 1917. Part Three: The ‘Unknown Light’ of 1938
Since then there have been many further wars and revolutions, culminating in today’s terrorism. The wisdom of the Church in approving the Fatima apparitions in 1930 is manifest in the fact that Fatima constitutes true prophecy, with its predictions being progressively and inevitably fulfilled. One of the most spectacular fulfilments was of course the ‘Miracle of the Sun’ on October 13, 1917, foretold, to the very month, hour and minute, and witnessed by almost 100,000 people. See my:
The Great Solar Miracle: Fatima October 13, 1917
The Great Solar Miracle. Fatima October 13, 1917. Part Two: Shedding Light on Joshuan Miracle of Sun
‘Spread of Error’
Our post-World War era (from 1945) corresponds exactly with the spreading of “error” throughout the world (Sr. Lucia’s comment in 1946). For unfortunately, due to humanity’s sinful stubbornness, the consecration of Russia for which Our Lady asked as early as 1929, was not done back then.
“It will be late”, as Our Lord had lamented. More than half a century “late” in fact, in 1984. (Though some insist that the requested consecration has not yet been accomplished. I shall come back to that). Thus the Pandora’s Box full of every conceivable form of “error” was flung wide open, seemingly with nothing capable of shutting it. The succession of Holy Fathers since has had “much to suffer”, as Our Lady had foretold, from persecution without, and even within, the Church. One pope, saint John Paul II, was in fact shot and almost killed by an assassin. This was on the 13th of May, 1981, and the pope recognized that he had been saved by the intercession of Our Lady of Fatima.
The long-awaited Third Secret of Fatima, first opened in 1960, during the pontificate of pope John XXIII, was finally revealed to the public 40 years later, in 2000. It disappointed some, amongst whom there were those who have claimed that it has not yet been fully revealed by the Church. It was however interpreted by the competent ecclesiastical authorities, who then regarded it as referring basically to C20th events.
So, was that the end of Fatima, perhaps to be updated now by more recent Marian revelations for the Third Millennium?
No it was, in a sense, only just the beginning.
Today error is rampant, with even the good being affected by it. For example, some Christian scientists are still clinging to, and promoting, out-dated evolutionary views, even while other authoritative Christian scientists are courageously exposing the false science in all of this and warning that evolutionary theory is anti-Design. See e.g. my:
It is in fact one of the greatest errors of our time, a false idea with enormous consequences.
Today it is often hard to find clear guidance anywhere. We are tossed about on a sea of calamitous storms. So our world today desperately needs to be re-orientated towards that “fixed point of reference” which is the Virgin Mary (John Paul II’s encyclical Redemptoris Mater), the unfailing “Star of the Sea”.
And Fatima still has a central rôle to play in the final outcome.
Perhaps the answer to What, now, in the Third Millennium?, has been answered by Vox Populi, whose contention is that a popular groundswell movement to urge the papacy to proclaim that Fifth Marian Dogma, Mary as Mediatrix, and its successful attainment, will be the spiritual catalyst needed for the triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, which must inevitably mean the triumph of Divine Mercy.
Legion of Mary founder, Frank Duff, had been an enthusiast for the doctrine as he had incorporated it into his Legion of Mary handbook. “Perhaps if his beatification gets a run on it may tie in with the popular request for a definition”.
Frits Albers of the Australian Marian Academy of the Immaculate Conception (AMAIC) wrote it into the AMAIC’s very Constitution in 1988, with reference to “Redemptoris Mater”: ““Mary present in mankind …” In every extension, and wherever the Mystery of Christ is at work! A future Pope will not have much difficulty in reading in these words an expression of how Tradition sees Mary as the ‘Mediatrix of all Graces’.”
What might give me pause, though, to become in any way involved in some worldwide push to have the pope proclaim a Fifth Marian Dogma would be that this would remind me of the efforts of those who, over the years, have kept insisting that the pope fulfil Our Lady of the Rosary’s wishes and collegially consecrate Russia to the Immaculate Heart.
Fr. N. Gruner’s dubious Fatima apostolate is at the forefront of this campaign.
For I am entirely of the conviction that pope John Paul II had fulfilled the conditions for this collegial act in his 1984 Consecration, or ‘Act of Entrustment’, and that Sister Lucia had personally confirmed that this solemn and universal act of consecration corresponded to what Our Lady wished (“Sim, està feita, tal como Nossa Senhora a pediu, desde o dia 25 de Março de 1984”: “Yes it has been done just as Our Lady asked, on 25 March 1984”: Letter of 8 November 1989).
Hence, I believe that any further discussion or request was without basis.
See further my discussion of this in my book:
The Five First Saturdays of Our Lady of Fatima
in which reasons are given for why I think that the Consecration had been properly achieved.
Ultimately it is the Church (not the seers) that interprets revelations and visions.
From time to time one may even have discerned notes of disappointment in Sr. Lucia’s own comments, but she always wisely submitted to the Church’s judgment. Her obedience was always a strong trait, as with all holy people. It is a virtue quite lacking, though, amongst the ‘seers’ of the false and unapproved apparitions, and indeed amongst their followers.
The need for the Church to interpret private revelations requires to be underlined. The three Fatima children, and those present at the Cova da Iria on 13th October 1917, were anticipating a miracle at midday, Portuguese time. But Heaven has its own timetable, and the Miracle actually occurred at midday solar time.
It was a miracle for the whole word!
A similar sort of human miscalculation is thus possible in the case of the Consecration. On a human level, one may well query that the Consecration has not been achieved, apart from the contentious issue that pope John Paul II did not make it specifically a consecration of Russia. For, despite the initial and spectacular collapse of communism a few years after 1984 (and many attribute this largely to John Paul II), the world does not appear to be showing the signs of finding its way back to God. On the contrary, error, as I have noted, is increasingly rampant. But that is to be expected.
The Consecration was done late, after all the errors had been unleashed. The 1984 Consecration was like a brake whose retarding effect though will take time to become fully manifest. We now have to work at undoing the error. The call for the Fifth Marian Dogma by the faithful may indeed be an essential part of this work. John Paul II, who was an astute discerner of what the Holy Spirit was saying to the Churches, probably realised that it was no longer sufficient to consecrate only Russia, which would have fulfilled the conditions back in the early C20th. No, with error now unleashed, the problem had become universal. ‘Russia’s errors’ had now become the world’s errors, and so the entire world now (Russia included) had needed to be consecrated to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.
Some of the so-called Marian apparitions, including Akita (Japan) which is supposed to have been approved (even by pope Benedict XVI), speak of fearful catastrophes, including “hurricanes of fire”, with enormous loss of life - Akita apparently tells of “a great punishment, worse than the Flood”, with the living envying the dead. A glimpse of that, perhaps, has been in the news media in the past weeks [this was originally written back in 1990] with unstoppable fires raging throughout southern California, including Malibu, home to film stars. This hecatomb, “fanned by 160 km/h [Santa Ana] winds and bone-dry conditions”, has been described as “the Perfect Storm”, even “the Beast”, and, yes, “Hurricanes of Fire”, with more than 1600 houses and businesses destroyed and over half a million people evacuated.
“Just like the end of the world”, screamed one headline, above a fiery red scene of “Hellfire”, as it was also described. “San Diego firefighter Mitch Mendler said he had lost count of the number of houses that had burned. “It was nuclear winter – it was like Armageddon”, he said”.
But catastrophes like this are only a preview, or what Our Lord had called “the birth pangs” (Matthew 24:8). Fatima does not talk just about land and houses burning, with only a small loss of human life, as in southern California, but about “the annihilation of several entire nations”. That means probably millions of people. This was conditional, of course, preceded by an “If …”.
Sadly, however, as we are so painfully aware, Our Lady of Fatima is not really being heeded.
Did John Paul II have this in mind when he, discussing the state of our modern world, warned of the possibility of “a ‘new flood’”?
John Paul II’s ‘Act of Entrustment’
As is well known, pope John Paul II immediately after the assassination attempt, thought of consecrating the world to the Immaculate Heart of Mary and he himself composed his “Act of Entrustment”, which was to be celebrated in the Basilica of Saint Mary Major on 7 June 1981, the Solemnity of Pentecost, the day chosen to commemorate the 1600th anniversary of the First Council of Constantinople and the 1550th anniversary of the Council of Ephesus. Since the Pope was unable to be present, his recorded Address was broadcast. The following is the part which refers specifically to the Act of Entrustment:
“Mother of all individuals and peoples, you know all their sufferings and hopes. In your motherly heart you feel all the struggles between good and evil, between light and darkness, that convulse the world: accept the plea which we make in the Holy Spirit directly to your heart, and embrace with the love of the Mother and Handmaid of the Lord those who most await this embrace, and also those whose act of entrustment you too await in a particular way. Take under your motherly protection the whole human family, which with affectionate love we entrust to you, O Mother. May there dawn for everyone the time of peace and freedom, the time of truth, of justice and of hope”…..
In order to respond more fully to the requests of Our Lady of Fatima, the Holy Father desired to make more explicit during the Holy Year of the Redemption the Act of Entrustment of 7 May 1981, which had been repeated in Fatima on 13 May 1982. On 25 March 1984 in Saint Peter’s Square, while recalling the fiat uttered by Mary at the Annunciation, the Holy Father, in spiritual union with the Bishops of the world, who had been “convoked” beforehand, entrusted all men and women and all peoples to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, in terms which recalled the heartfelt words spoken in 1981:
“O Mother of all men and women, and of all peoples, you who know all their sufferings and their hopes, you who have a mother’s awareness of all the struggles between good and evil, between light and darkness, which afflict the modern world, accept the cry which we, moved by the Holy Spirit, address directly to your Heart. Embrace with the love of the Mother and Handmaid of the Lord, this human world of ours, which we entrust and consecrate to you, for we are full of concern for the earthly and eternal destiny of individuals and peoples. In a special way we entrust and consecrate to you those individuals and nations which particularly need to be thus entrusted and consecrated.
‘We have recourse to your protection, holy Mother of God!’ Despise not our petitions in our necessities”.
The Pope then continued more forcefully and with more specific references, as though commenting on the Message of Fatima in its sorrowful fulfilment:
“Behold, as we stand before you, Mother of Christ, before your Immaculate Heart, we desire, together with the whole Church, to unite ourselves with the consecration which, for love of us, your Son made of himself to the Father: ‘For their sake’, he said, ‘I consecrate myself that they also may be consecrated in the truth’ (Jn 17:19). We wish to unite ourselves with our Redeemer in this his consecration for the world and for the human race, which, in his divine Heart, has the power to obtain pardon and to secure reparation.
The power of this consecration lasts for all time and embraces all individuals, peoples and nations. It overcomes every evil that the spirit of darkness is able to awaken, and has in fact awakened in our times, in the heart of man and in his history. How deeply we feel the need for the consecration of humanity and the world—our modern world—in union with Christ himself! For the redeeming work of Christ must be shared in by the world through the Church.
The present Year of the Redemption shows this: the special Jubilee of the whole Church.
Above all creatures, may you be blessed, you, the Handmaid of the Lord, who in the fullest way obeyed the divine call!
Hail to you, who are wholly united to the redeeming consecration of your Son!
Mother of the Church! Enlighten the People of God along the paths of faith, hope, and love!
Enlighten especially the peoples whose consecration and entrustment by us you are awaiting. Help us to live in the truth of the consecration of Christ for the entire human family of the modern world.
In entrusting to you, O Mother, the world, all individuals and peoples, we also entrust to you this very consecration of the world, placing it in your motherly Heart.
Immaculate Heart! Help us to conquer the menace of evil, which so easily takes root in the hearts of the people of today, and whose immeasurable effects already weigh down upon our modern world and seem to block the paths towards the future!
From famine and war, deliver us.
From nuclear war, from incalculable self-destruction, from every kind of war, deliver us.
From sins against the life of man from its very beginning, deliver us.
From hatred and from the demeaning of the dignity of the children of God, deliver us.
From every kind of injustice in the life of society, both national and international, deliver us.
From readiness to trample on the commandments of God, deliver us.
From attempts to stifle in human hearts the very truth of God, deliver us.
From the loss of awareness of good and evil, deliver us.
From sins against the Holy Spirit, deliver us, deliver us.
Accept, O Mother of Christ, this cry laden with the sufferings of all individual human beings, laden with the sufferings of whole societies.
Help us with the power of the Holy Spirit to conquer all sin: individual sin and the ‘sin of the world’, sin in all its manifestations.
Let there be revealed, once more, in the history of the world the infinite saving power of the Redemption: the power of merciful Love! May it put a stop to evil! May it transform consciences! May your Immaculate Heart reveal for all the light of Hope!”…..
The Five First Saturdays
(Communion of Reparation)
St. Paul said (1 Corinthians 9:16): “Woe to me if I do not preach the Gospel!”
And French philosopher Jacques Maritain said: “Woe to me if I do not Thomistize” [proclaim the doctrine of St. Thomas Aquinas].
Perhaps I must say: “Woe to us if we do not promote the Five First Saturdays”; a compendium of the Gospels (and also a purifying practice enabling for those called to Thomistize to do it well).
Perhaps, as with the Book of Esther, the critical world situation will come down to “the hour and moment and day of decision before God and among all the nations” (Mordecai’s Dream, 10:11), with Almighty God snatching the victory seemingly from the jaws of defeat.
The practice of the ‘Five First Saturdays’ is certainly going to be an integral part of this victory.