NEWS BULLETIN – OCTOBER 2017

pope

PAPAL INTENTION FOR OCTOBER 2017

Workers and the Unemployed.

That all workers may receive respect and protection of their rights and that the unemployed may receive the opportunity to contribute to the common good.

bishop

BISHOP’S MESSAGE

100 YEARS OF THE MATERNAL PROTECTION OF OUR LADY OF FATIMA:
MESSAGE OF PRAYER, PENANCE AND PEACE

INTRODUCTION

As all of us know the year 2017 is an important year for the Catholics all over the world. It is the centenary year of the apparitions of Our Lady at Fatima, Portugal to three shepherd children Francisco, Louisa and Jacintha who were less than 13 years old.

October 13th 1917 was the last apparition with the miracle of the Sun. Hence during this month I invite you to reflect on the message of Our Lady of Fatima.

The celebration of the centennial of the apparitions has revealed the universal feature of Fatima; of its message and its diffusion. First of all, it is the message of Fatima itself that has a universal value: it is a message addressed to all and a message that invites all of us to give God the place that is only due to Him in the life of each one. The values of the message, as the peace, are universal.

Fatima is a Message of Peace brought to humanity by Mother Mary (1). With Christ and Mary, we abide in God. Indeed, if we want to be Christian, we must be Marian; in a word, we have to acknowledge the essential, vital and providential relationship uniting Our Lady to Jesus, a relationship that opens before us the way leading to Him (2). Mother Mary gave a human face to the Son of the Eternal Father. Now we can contemplate her in the succession of Joyful, Luminous, Sorrowful and Glorious moments of her life, which we revisit in our recitation of the Rosary.

INVITATION AND FOREWARNING:

Our Lady of Fatima invites us once again to turn to prayer, penance, and conversion. She asks us to never offend God again. She forewarns all humanity about the necessity of abandoning oneself to God, the source of Love and Mercy (3). Our Lady foretold, and warned us about, a way of life that is godless and indeed profanes God in His creatures. Such a life – frequently proposed and imposed – risks leading to hell. Mary came to remind us that God’s light dwells within us and protects us, for, as, “the child [of the woman] was snatched away and taken to God” (Rev 12:5) (4).

GOD’S LIGHT:

We can take as our examples Saint Francisco and Saint Jacinta, whom the Virgin Mary introduced into the immense ocean of God’s Light and taught to Adore Him. That was the source of their strength in overcoming opposition and suffering (5). In 1916, God prepared the shepherd children by sending them a celestial messenger, the Angel of Peace, Catechist of Fatima. This Angel taught those children prayers, the sense of reverence before God’s presence, the value of time: make good use of it, offering of one’s life, the Sanctification of our daily duties, the supernatural value of suffering and its fruits of peace. Finally, the Angel focused on the most profound esteem for the Eucharist, how to make Reparation to the Most Holy Trinity through the Eucharist and Christ’s real presence in the Eucharist and the fruit of reparation: the conversion of poor sinners. School, Catechism children and youngsters do this Reparatory Adoration for goodness to triumph over modern day evils.

GOD’S WISHES:

1) COMMUNION OF REPARATION OF FIRST SATURDAYS known as the Great Promise of the Immaculate Heart of Mary blessed by five tremendous Graces from heaven:
(1) Grace of final perseverance
(2) Conversion of many sinners
(3) Salvation of many souls
(4) Peace of the world
(5) Unity and strength of the Universal Church against inner dissentions opposing the Magisterium of Peter.

This “Forgotten part of the Message of Fatima” is the essential condition missing to obtain the definitive Triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, when devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary is spread throughout the world and the Immaculate Heart of Mary is venerated alongside with the Sacred Heart of Jesus by the Universal Church(6). On June 13, 1912, Pope Pius X gave a plenary indulgence to the faithful who performed “some special exercises of devotion on the First Saturdays of every month in reparation to the Blessed Virgin Mary Immaculate.”

This is done on the First Saturday of Five consecutive months, with the intention of making Reparation to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, we confess and receive Holy Communion, recite five decades of the Rosary, and keep company with Our Lady for fifteen minutes while meditating on the mysteries of the Rosary.
There are five kinds of offences and blasphemies:
1. Against the Immaculate Conception
2. Against Her Virginity
3. Against Her Divine Maternity
4. Those who openly seek to Foster in the Hearts of children indifference or even hatred for this Immaculate Mother
5. The offences of those who directly outrage Her in Holy Images. Each of the Five Saturdays corresponds to a specific offence. In this way,

we can help remove the thorns from Our Lady’s Heart. This Devotion dissolves the attacks on families, which is the final battle for the human heart and the family now, offering life and peace.

We can ask Our Lady to apply the promise to a particular soul for each set of Five First Saturdays. Many would benefit if we continue this life long. This is Christian Charity as we are members of the Mystical body of Christ.

2) CONSECRATION TO THE IMMACULATE HEART OF MARY:

We must Consecrate ourselves or Entrust those in most need of God’s Mercy to the Immaculate Heart of Mary:
(1) To prevent the loss of faith and morals among the faithful in our days, this is part of the Fatima prophecy
(2) To atone for the sins of the society of our time
(3) To bring down on the Church the special Marian protection given to those “favoured disciples of Jesus,” like John the Apostle, who was closer to the Heart of His Master and Redeemer and who received Mary as Spiritual Mother at the foot of the Cross. We must become other John’s. This must be done frequently on special Marian feast days and even daily. Many Popes have done this. The Brown Scapular is a sign of this Consecration.

God gives Graces through the immaculate Heart of Mary. We must ask Grace from Her. We must plead for Peace from the Immaculate Heart of Mary, for the Lord has confided the Peace of the world to her (7).

SECRET OF FATIMA:

This has three Parts:
1) The vision of hell, where the souls of poor sinners go. To save them, God wishes to establish in the world the devotion to the Immaculate Heart. If people do what she tells us, many souls will be saved and there will be peace (8). If we do not respond to her, there are ramifications.

2) She spoke on atheism which opposes God’s kingdom. She foretold future events and revealed miraculous signs to prove the truth of God’s predictions.

3) The struggle between good and evil and the liberating effects of penance.

Penance today is, before anything else, the Sanctification of our Daily Duties. To purify our hearts and the Body of Christ, the Church, we must do penance. In the Mystery of evil, she showed the way to triumph over evil, the need of God’s grace to overcome all obstacles and the need for prayer and penance in a well balanced life.

PURIFICATION:

Whenever we experience the Cross, Jesus has already experienced it before us. But, when there is no habit of practicing penance and the worldly spirit brings people to search for unlawful pleasures and desires, the only possibility is to be purified by suffering. The Church has suffered much in the XXth century, “the Century of Martyrs.” For those suffering from illnesses, Pope Francis called on them to live their lives as a gift: “Like the shepherd children, tell Our Lady that you want to offer yourselves to God with all your heart.”(9)

MARY’S SUPREME ROLE IN SALVATION:

Most Apparitions at Fatima began with Our Lady outstretching her hands, signifying her as Mediatrix of all Grace. She has been given all Power, all Grace and all Gifts to bestow upon her children. On 13th October 1917, she was also seen as Our Lady of Sorrows signifying her role as Co-Redemptrix. She is our Advocate pleading for us as God seeks our conversion. We must pray for the proclamation of this Fifth Dogma. This is God’s salvific plan.

HEART OF CHILDREN:

With the canonization, of the two Shepherd children, Pope Francis has proposed to the whole Church to have the heart of children. Their sanctity is not a consequence of the Apparitions, but of the fidelity and ardour with which they corresponded to the privilege they had received of being able to see the Virgin Mary. The Visionaries, after having seen Mary, frequently said the Rosary, did Penance, and offered Sacrifices for an end to the war [World War I, which was raging at the time] and for the souls most in need of Divine Mercy. In our day, too, there is great need of Prayer and of Penance to implore the Grace of Conversion and an end to the many wars and conflicts in the world today, which disfigure the face of humanity. Let us allow ourselves to be guided by the light that comes from Fatima. May the Immaculate Heart of Mary always be our refuge, our consolation, and the way that leads to Christ (10).

CONCLUSION:

The entire Message of Fatima is a great call to Holiness for the Church of our time. It is a Message which reveals the desire of the Maternal Immaculate Heart of Mary: an Urgent call to Holiness for the Peace of the World and for the Salvation of all in Christ (11) Let us live and Spread this Message, which has the fundamentals of Evangelization by inner conversion, Prayer especially the Holy Rosary, Penance, the First Saturdays’ Consecration, Reparatory Adoration and frequent Sacraments.

NOTES:

[1] Pope Francis’ in-flight press conference: Fatima to Rome: 14 May 2017 (Vatican Radio)
[2] Greeting of His Holiness Pope Francis: Vigil at the Chapel of the Apparitions: 12 May 2017 (Vatican Radio) [3] Pope Francis on 11 May 2016 (Vatican Radio)
[4] Pope Francis’ homily for the Canonization of Saint Francisco and Saint Jacinta on 13 May 2017 (Vatican Radio) [5] Pope Francis’ homily for the Canonization of Saint Francisco and Saint Jacinta on 13 May 2017 (Vatican Radio) [6] Prophecy of Saint Pio of Pietrelcina; ‘Forgotten part’ coined by Prof Americo, WAF International President. [7] Our Lady of Fatima to St Jacinta.
[8] Our Lady on 13 July 1917 [9] Pope Francis: 13 May 2017, at Fatima(Vatican Radio) [10] Pope reflects on pilgrimage to Fatima: Regina Coeli: 14 May 2017 (Vatican Radio) [11] Sr. Lucia in her book “Calls from the Message of Fatima”

With my most cordial blessings
A. Amalraj,
Bishop of Ootacamund

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