Updated: May 12, 2022
About the Apparition
On May 13th we honor the the Marian apparition that took place in Fatima, Portugal. The six apparitions began in 1917 to three small children; Lucia, 9, Francisco, 8, and Jacinta, 6. Over the course of the apparitions Our Lady gave the children messages that warned of the harm we were inflicting upon ourselves and the world due to our sin: plagues, war, persecution, and the loss of many souls. She told the children to pray constantly for the conversion of sinners.
On May 13, 1917 an apparition "of a woman all in white, more brilliant than the sun" showed herself to the children saying, "please don't be afraid of me, I am not going to harm you...I come from Heaven." The woman was described as wearing a white mantle with gold trim, and holding a rosary in her hand. She told the children to devote themselves to saying the rosary, because through this prayer they could bring peace to the world and an end to war. At the end of the apparitions she revealed her name to Lucia saying, " I am the Lady of the Rosary."
Later that day 70,000 people came to witness the apparition the children had described regarding the woman in white. Our Lady promised that she would show everyone that the apparitions were true and this is where we get the phrase, the sun danced at Fatima. The entire crowd saw the sun make three circles and move around the sky in a zigzag, dispelling any doubt they may have held towards the children. By 1930 the apparitions had been approved by the Catholic Church as authentic.
The Three Secrets of Fatima
1. The first part is the vision of hell.Our Lady showed us a great sea of fire which seemed to be under the earth. Plunged in this fire were demons and souls in human form, like transparent burning embers, all blackened or burnished bronze, floating about in the conflagration, now raised into the air by the flames that issued from within themselves together with great clouds of smoke, now falling back on every side like sparks in a huge fire, without weight or equilibrium, and amid shrieks and groans of pain and despair, which horrified us and made us tremble with fear. The demons could be distinguished by their terrifying and repulsive likeness to frightful and unknown animals, all black and transparent. This vision lasted but an instant.
You have seen hell where the souls of poor sinners go. To save them, God wishes to establish in the world devotion to my Immaculate Heart. If what I say to you is done, many souls will be saved and there will be peace.
2. The war is going to end: but if people do not cease offending God, a worse one will break out during the Pontificate of Pius XI. When you see a night illumined by an unknown light, know that this is the great sign given you by God that he is about to punish the world for its crimes, by means of war, famine, and persecutions of the Church and of the Holy Father. To prevent this, I shall come to ask for the consecration of Russia to my Immaculate Heart, and the Communion of reparation on the First Saturdays.
3. According to the interpretation of the “little shepherds,” which was also confirmed recently by Sister Lucia, “the Bishop clothed in white” who prays for all the faithful is the Pope. As he makes his way with great difficulty towards the Cross amid the corpses of those who were martyred (Bishops, priests, men and women Religious and many lay people), he too falls to the ground, apparently dead, under a hail of gunfire.After the assassination attempt of 13 May 1981, it appeared evident that it was “a mother’s hand that guided the bullet’s path,” enabling “the Pope in his throes” to halt “at the threshold of death.
After the two parts which I have already explained, at the left of Our Lady and a little above, we saw an Angel with a flaming sword in his left hand; flashing, it gave out flames that looked as though they would set the world on fire; but they died out in contact with the splendor that Our Lady radiated towards him from her right hand: pointing to the earth with his right hand, the Angel cried out in a loud voice: ‘Penance, Penance, Penance!’
Celebrating the Feast of Our Lady of Fatima with Prayer, Food, & Activities!
1. Try a Portuguese dish in honor of where the apparition took place.
2. Cut and arrange a fruit platter to look like the sun. This makes for a healthy snack that can be jazzed up with fruit dip.
3. Make Sun Dried Tomato Pasta as a play on the association with the sun dancing at Fatima.
1. Make a bright and cheery playlist and have a dance party.
2. Watch "Fatima" with your sun inspired snack tray.
3. During the Fatima apparition, there was an "Angel of Peace," donate to Catholic Charities or a local initiative or cause that supports peace in your community.
1. Mary revealed herself as Our Lady of the Rosary, pray a rosary alone or invite friends & family to join you.
2. Dedicate yourself to the Five First Saturdays devotion.