26 07 2012

A hostel for the sick was begun at the site in Fatima in 1924.  In 1927, the Stations of the Cross were built on the mountain road.  And then in 1928, a foundation stone was laid for the basilica that has since been built.  There are also more chapels, hospitals and other facilities there.

Thousands of pilgrims come to Fatima every year.  In 1930, the Catholic Church officially recognized the apparitions ofOur Lady and granted a papal indulgence to those who come to Fatima.  There was such a large crowd in 1946 for the coronation of the statue of Our Lady of Fatima that the entrance had to be closed.

The two youngest children of the Marto family, Jacinta and Francisco, both died from the influenza epidemic.  Francisco was the 8th child in the family and Jacinta the ninth.  Francisco died at home after much suffering.  Jacinta died in a hospital, also after much suffering.  When asked if she would like to see her mother before she died, Jacinta replied that her family would not live long and they would all meet in Heaven soon.  Our Lady had wanted two of her sisters to become nuns.  But her mother did not want it and Jacinta had said that Our Lady would soon take them to Heaven.  Shortly after that, her two sisters died.

In 1935, the bodies of Jacinta and Francisco were reinterred in the basilica.  Both Francisco and Jacinta were declared venerable by Pope John Paul II in a Fatima ceremony on May 13, 1989. The Pope also declared them ‘blessed’ on May 13, 2000.  Jacinta is the youngest non-martyred child ever to be beatified.

Lucia dos Santos was the youngest of seven children in her family.  Our Lady had told Lucia that she wanted her to remain in this world in order to spread the devotion to The Immaculate Heart of Mary.  Sister Lucia became a member of the Sisters of St. Dorothy.  In 1948, Lucia left the Dorothean order and joined the Discalced Carmelite Order in the convent of Santa Teresa in Coimbra, Portugal.  She was given the name of Lucia of  The Immaculate Heart.  She had been deaf, blind and ailing for several years before she died in her room at the convent at the age of 97 on February 13, 2005. Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger ordered her cell sealed off. It is said this was because Sister Lucia had continued to receive more revelations and any evidence of this would be needed if she was canonized.

Before this, Pope Paul VI made a fiftieth anniversary pilgrimage on the date of the first apparition of Our Lady.  He and Sister Lucia prayed together at the shrine at that time.  In 1987 on the Feast of Our Lady of Fatima, Pope John Paul II came to the shrine to thank the Virgin Mary for saving his life in the assassination attempt on May 13, 1981.  He also visited with Sister Lucia at the convent in 2000.

Lucia was buried on the convent grounds, but her body was expected to be reinterred at the basilica along with her cousins.

As Our Lady had promised Lucia, she never left her alone.  Our Lady visited Lucia many times, both in the Dorothean monastery and the Carmelite convent.  Most details of the visits have been written down by Lucia as instructed by various church officials.  She spent several years detailing all the facts of Our Lady’s apparitions and the lives of her cousins to be written into a book in order to tell the true story of Our Lady of Fatima and Her promises and instructions to the three children.

Our Lady has given to the world the plan for peace as given by Our Lord.  We have only to follow His instructions to obtain that peace.  Consecrating ourselves to The Immaculate Heart of Mary will allow Our Lady to lead us along the way of Grace, Penance, The Rosary, and Reparation to fulfill the requests by Our Lord.



25 07 2012

Within that year, Our Lord appeared to Lucia telling her of His pleasure about the consecration the Pope had made. However, she was told that the consecration was incomplete according to His wishes.

Lucia then wrote about this to her spiritual director saying that World War II would end soon.  In fact, the War did end quickly on the Feast of Our Lady.  But, Lucia was told that the conversion of Russia will not take place yet.  And if the Bishops of Spain heed Our Lord’s request for the true conversion of the peoples, good.  But if not, then Russia will once again be the enemy.

Lucia went on to explain that Our Lord is allowing himself to be appeased but He is very bitter and sorrowful that such a small number of souls are willing to follow His Law required of them.

Now the Lord asks this penance:  That every person must lead a life of justice in observance of His Law.  And He requires that this be known to all souls.  Our Lord says that many people think penance means great austerities and do not have the heart to follow His Law.

Sometime later, when Lucia was in the chapel at midnight, Our Lord came again.  This time He said, ‘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.’

He said that the consecration by the Holy Father is incomplete.  And now it cannot be completed until every individual, every home, every diocese and every country consecrates itself, after the example of the Holy Father to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. 

This personal consecration must have four elements.  GRACE, PENANCE, THE ROSARY AND REPARATION.  Our Lord spoke bitterly and sorrowfully about the small number of souls in His Grace.

GRACE:  Our Lady came to Fatima to bring peace to the world and GRACE is the foundation of peace.  Wars are punishment for the sins of the world.  Grace must prevail in souls in order for there to be peace in the world.  There must be peace between God and man in order for The Immaculate Heart of Mary to bring peace to the world.

Heroic sacrifices are not required of man.  Only the fulfillment of each one’s daily duties is required.  Sometimes these daily duties are hard to fulfill. Thus they automatically become works of penance and sacrifice.

PENANCE:  In order to have peace in the world, the PENANCE that Our Lord now seeks and requires is that each person must fulfill his duties in life and observe His Law.  Our Lord refers to this as man’s daily cross.  ‘If any man will come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me.’

THE  ROSARY:  Our Lord loved His Mother deeply and so the true follower of Christ must have a true love for Mary His Mother.  Man must prove this love by the recitation of  THE ROSARY.  This, then, gives The Blessed Virgin Mary new power to crush the head of the Serpent and to destroy his evil power over the world.

REPARATION:  Communions of Reparation are also required to fulfill mankind’s personal consecration to Our Lady. Communions of REPARATION are made by following the First Saturday devotions. This devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary should be known throughout the world until it becomes a common practice to honor the Most Immaculate Heart of Mary. 

If mankind does as Our Lord has asked, peace will come to the world.  There will be true peace between God and man at last.  GRACE, PENANCE, THE ROSARY and REPARATION are all that Our Lord asks of each individual in order to bring this peace to our world. 




7 06 2012

I hear the phrase, Have a Nice Day at least once or twice each day.  Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we all really did Have a Nice Day.  I’m talking about if we all were really, really, really nice for a whole day.  Just think what that would do to this worn out old world.  I’m sure if you are like me, you are just simply sick and tired of all the stuff on the television and all the stuff in the newspapers and all that other stuff about how awful this whole world is.

People are killing each other wholesale across on the other side of the world.  Even in this area of the country, there are numerous killings every day.  And they are reported on the television constantly.   And right after that one is the story about the pornographic problems with grown people abusing children.  That is also on the television and in the newspapers constantly.  What is the matter with people.  Something most certainly is.  I mean, this is not really normal behavior.  Period.  And everyone knows this.  

So, to get back to the nice day, wouldn’t it be nice if we as individuals tried just for one whole day to be nice. All day.  To everyone we meet.  No matter who or where.  If you think this is a good idea, make a point of smiling at the people you pass in the grocery store and in the post office and even in the local WalMart.  And besides that, hold the door for the person behind you as they come in or out.  And then, speak nicely to the clerk.  You don’t have to carry on a big conversation, just simply smile and act NICE.  

And then in your own home, try really hard to be extra nice for one whole day.  When the kids drive you crazy, smile or laugh at their jokes, or you might even have to sing to overcome the noise.  But do it!  When you drive, make a point of letting that car turn in front of you or allowing someone to pass you when they need to.  Just pay attention and let those little niceties cover you up for just one whole day.  

If there is someone at work that drives you nuts, try to be extra nice on that one day.  When you pay the parking attendant, smile and say thanks.  It doesn’t take a whole lot just to be nice for a whole day.  

Just make a point of being extra nice to everyone for one whole day.  Then you can really smile and say HAVE A NICE DAY! because you mean it.  

Might even do that again some day.  It might be sort of fun.  


5 06 2012

The children were so aware of praying for sinners not to go to Hell that they spent almost all their time praying. While watching their sheep, they prayed the Rosary and repeated the prayers the Angel had taught them earlier.

They also sacrificed themselves constantly.  But their sacrifices were known only to them, not letting anyone else know what they were doing. They would not drink water and then would offer their terrible thirst up for the salvation of souls. They even did without water for one whole month during that summer.  They constantly searched for new ways to sacrifice themselves.  They found a heavy rope and cut it into three pieces, one for each.  They bound this around their waists where no one could see and suffered the pain of being scratched by the rope.  They even found that by sleeping with the rope on their waist, they could suffer even more because they could not sleep.  They prayed for sinners constantly, hoping to save them from the fires of Hell.

However, there were others who were looking upon this as another opportunity to destroy the Church.  One was an editor of a leftist newspaper.  He planned to distribute pamphlets against the Church, using the children’s story.  He tried to distribute these after Mass only to find that the place of Mass had been changed that Sunday. Then he and his guards went to the Cova where they were mocked by the many people who had come there to pray. He soon left in humiliation.

Many people stil refused to believe their story and the children were very hurt by this.  Some people did believe by now, but even some priests refused to accept their story. The three childen were questioned almost constantly by people from everywhere who came to the area to check out the story for themselves.

September 13 came and the children were going to the Cova. They were stopped by crowds who wanted their special requests asked of Our Lady. As they tried to walk through the crowd, people knelt on the road in front of them asking for special favors from Our Lady. Finally a few men made a way through the crowd for them.

At the Cova, they began the Rosary and the people responded.  When they were almost finished, a flash was seen and then a globe of light and Our lady was standing over the holmoak.

‘What do you want of me?’ Lucia asked.  ‘Let the people continue to say the Rosary every day to obtain the end of the war’, Our Lady said.  ‘In the last month, in October, I shall perform a miracle so that all may believe in my apparitions.  If they had not taken you to the village, the miracle would have been greater.  Saint Joseph will come with the Baby Jesus to give peace to the world.  Our Lord also will come to bless the people.  Besides Our Lady of the Rosary and Our Lady of Sorrows will come.  God is pleased with your sacrifices but does not wish that you sleep with the rope.  Wear it only during the day.’

Then Lucia said that many had asked for healing.  She asked specifically about a deaf girl.  Our Lady answered, ‘In the course of the year she will be improved.’ Lucia asked about helping other people.  ‘Some I will cure; but the others, no.  Our Lord does not have confidence in them.’

Next, Lucia asked about building a chapel at the Cova. ‘Use half of the money received so far for the litters. On one of them, place the statue of Our Lady of the Rosary. The other half should be set aside to help with the building of the chapel.

Lucia then said, people think I should be hanged or burned.  Please perform a miracle for all to believe.

Our Lady answered, ‘Yes, in October, I will perform a miracle so that all may believe.’

Then Lucia offered Our Lady two letters from people and a bottle of cologne.  Our Lady said, ‘None of that is necessary for Heaven.’

Then Our Lady began to ascend towards the East.  Many in the crowd saw the globe of light as it rose.



27 05 2012

Well, another holiday weekend about gone and am I ever glad.  I never did care too much for Memorial Day which was called Decoration Day before.  It just never was my favorite time of the year.  Everyone was so somber and sad and I didn’t care much for that part.

My father was a printer at the local newspaper and there was a printer’s plot at the very old local cemetery.  So, every year, we had to attend this somber,  long memorial service for these dead printers.  The cemetery was so old that it had broken grave markers and everything smelled musty and moldy and old.  But my father was very respectful of those who had gone before him and so we went, like it or not.  And we better not have any other plans and we better not complain either.

Usually, it was humid and uncomfortable weather and we had to get all dressed up special for this occasion. That meant Sunday School clothes all the way.  And then we sat on these very old benches that had rusty spots on them.  The whole day was just difficult to deal with.  But we were brought up to always have good manners and be respectful and kind.  So we smiled nicely and spoke to all those older people that we saw once a year.

A Preacher would make a small sermon and say a few prayers.  And then came the really special treat of  a quartet that sang several songs.  They were usually much older people who could not carry a tune in a bucket and they certainly had no harmony between them.  But they had a juice harp to sound out the note and then they would all sing, sometimes together.  We sat glued to our seats, not daring to look at each other for fear we might have to laugh or cry, never sure of which it would be.

When it was all over, we had to stand around while our parents talked to all their old friends and visited for awhile.  However, I wouldn’t mind getting to do that one more time.  Might be fun to see all those people again and sure would be nice to see my parents again.

Miss them all. And all those like them who worked so hard every day to have a better life for everyone.  And all those who taught us children all the manners and niceties of life and reminded us to be ladies and gentlemen no matter the situation.

I know this holiday is for remembering all those who have fallen in the quest to save our country.  And I respect and honor that myself.  I miss a lot of that patriotism that was so prevalent in that day and time too.  I still honor the flag every day at my home.  And I truly respect all this country has stood for all the years.  I miss the moral fiber that always held everyone together, the honor for the parents and the respect for Almighty God and the other things that made us all one big family belonging to this wonderful country.  I remember it all very well.  And I miss all that, too.  I hope we can all get back to that very soon.

Happy Memorial Day!


19 03 2012

I am most definitely not a theologian, so I am not quoting the Bible.  I just remember from my childhood what I learned and how it has stuck to me like glue ever since.  I remember in the Sunday School Class that the teacher told us God had said that if you are heavy laden meaning if you have a heavy load to carry, that if you give it to Him, He will carry it for you.   And that load was not wood or bricks or anything like that.  It meant the load of your life like sorrow or problems or no money or whatever it was at the time.

I grew up in a Southern Baptist Church and attended Sunday School every week.  My parents did not attend Church because my father worked late at night.  But neighbors took us kids to the Sunday School every week.  I never did really fit in with the Baptist Church but I learned a lot there.  I learned all the stories that were appropriate from the Bible.  I could even recite all the Books of the Bible at one time.  By the way, I can also recite the Presidents of the United States that I had to learn as a Pledge in a Sorority later in my life.   See, not everyone can do that!

Anyway, getting back to that heavy burden, some of us can really relate to that one.  I know I can.  It seemed that those burdens came along pretty often and some of them were pretty heavy too.  In fact, I don’t know that I could ever have carried them on my own.  But I remembered those Sunday School Lessons and I did offer my burdens to God for Him to carry for me.  And He did.  Sometimes, I would wonder about it, but I knew in my heart that He did hear me and He did pick up those burdens and help me carry them.

And He still does that for me even today.  Some days are really hard.  This has not been a particularly good day for me.  I just couldn’t seem to get going from early this morning until after dinner.  Something was wrong all day.  Something to fix or something I forgot or maybe I forgot to fix.  Just was not a good day.  And once again, I just offered it up to God and He made it better.  Or at least livable.

Over my life, when things have been exceptionally bad, I learned to sit down with God and just talk to Him.  Sometimes I was able to go to Church to do this.  I eventually joined the Catholic Church and visit with God present in the Most Holy Eucharist every day if I can.  Other times, I just had to make a moment in my life to sit down at home and really talk with Him.  He is really there.  He is in my life.  He is listening.  It is just up to me to take advantage of these moments and let Him be in charge.  That ain’t easy to do sometimes.  But I have learned more over the years about letting go and letting God handle whatever might be the problem.  You know, this is a saying at the AA and Alanon about letting go and letting God.  And it works there, too.

That is all that matters anyway.  The fact that it does work and does help me in my daily life.  I am so glad I don’t try to solve everything on my own.  If I did, my life sure would be a mess.  Instead, I just lean on God and all things seem to eventually fall into line and every problem gets solved.  Might not be answered the way I would have done it, but the result is always what I needed and wanted.

So once again, Thank You Dear God for Your Promises.


17 01 2012

I have been hearing the objections to Voter Identification at the polls.  This is probably the most ridiculous of them all so far.  People are complaining that this is discriminatory.  How can Voter Identification possibly be discriminatory.  Everyone is asked to do the exact same thing.  In my area, we have to show our Driver’s License and the picture on the Driver’s License should be the same person who is showing the Identification.    Now, this makes perfect sense to me.  I cannot possibly see where any of that would be discriminatory.  I never even thought twice about showing my Driver’s License.

In a children’s Sunday School song,  all the children are described as ‘Red, Yellow, Black and White’.   Same with the Voter Identification.

The red person is expected to show identification, the yellow person is supposed to show identification, the black person is supposed to show identification and the white person is supposed to show identification.  Why, I bet even the purple people eater at the back of the line is supposed to show his identification.

So what could possibly be discriminatory about any of this.  No reason to complain that I can see.  Unless someone was planning to vote illegally, there is nothing  to worry about at all.

Pay attention this year.  We need to make some drastic changes.   In a hurry.  Hooray!