The Apparition of July 13, 1917 – The First Two Secrets
With the apparition of July 13, 1917 we enter the heart of the mystery and message of Fatima. Also at the Cova da Iria our Lady still appears to the three little shepherds. “What do you want from me?“, asked Lucy; replied: “I want you to come here on the 13th of next month, to continue to say the Rosary every day in honor of Our Lady ofthe Rosary in order to obtain world peace and the end of the war, because only she can give help“. Lucia asked her to reveal who she was and to do a miracle so that everyone could believe the apparitions. The Virgin resumed: “Keep coming here every month. In October I will say who I am and what I want, and I will do a miracle that everyone will see to believe. Sacrifice yourself for sinners and say many times,especially when you make a sacrifice: o Jesus, it is for your love, for the conversion of sinners and in reparation for the sins committed against the Immaculate Heart of Mary“. These words began the vision of the secrets that we tell below in the same words with which St. Lucia describes her in his Memoirs.
Quote start. Our Lady opened her arms, but this time the usual reflection seemed to penetrate the earth and we saw it as a sea of fire. Immersed in that fire, demons and souls, like transparent and black or bronze embers with human appearance, floated in the fire raised by the flames that came out of themselves along with clouds of smoke, to fall from all over, as the faville fall in the great fires, without weight or balance, between screams and moans of pain and despair, which instilled horror and made them tremble with fear. Demons stood out for the hideous and repellent forms of frightening and unknown animals, but transparent like fiery black coals. This vision lasted a moment. Terrified and as if to ask for help, we looked up at Our Lady, who said to us with goodness and sadness”: “You have seen hell where the souls of poor sinners go. To save them God wants to establish in the world devotion to my Immaculate Heart. If they do what I tell you, many souls will be saved, they will have peace. The war is coming to an end. But if they do not let God be offended, under the pontificate of Pius XI another worse one will begin. When you see a night illuminated by an unknown light, know that it is the great signal, that God gives you of His intention to punish the world for its crimes, through war, hunger and persecution of the Church and the Holy Father. To prevent it I will come to ask Russia for consecration to my Immaculate Heart and restorative Communion on early Saturdays. If they listen to my demands, Russia will convert and there will be peace. Otherwise he will spread his mistakes,eliciting war and persecution of the Church. The good will be martyred, the Holy Father will have much to suffer, several nations will be destroyed. In the end, My Immaculate Heart will triumph. The Holy Father will consecrate to me Russia that will convert, and a period of peace will be granted to the world. In Portugal, the dogma of faith will always be preserved; etc… Don’t tell anyone that. To Francis, yes, you can tell. When you recite the Rosary, say after every mystery: O my Jesus, forgive us, free us from the fire of hell, bring to Heaven all souls, especially those who need it most“. End of quote from Sister Lucia’s Memoirs.
To the point,“In Portugal, the dogmaof faith will always be preserved; etc. ” is the third part of the secret that St. Lucia had failed to report in the editorial staff of the Memoirs because at the time of their writing she was not yet allowed to reveal it. In fact, St. Lucia recounts that on December 17, 1927, approaching the Tabernacle of the Chapel of the Dorothees of Tuy to ask the Lord how he could satisfy the confessor’s order to put in writing the graces he had received from God if among them were the secrets that the Virgin had confided to her, she clearly heard the following words of Jesus: “My daughter, write down what they ask of you; and also write down everything the Most Holy Virgin revealed to you in the apparition in which she spoke of this devotion (to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, nda). As for the rest of the secret, keep quiet“.
The third secret of Fatima we will deal with in the next article. Now we continue with a brief spiritual deepening and some reflection on the first two parts of the vision. We shall focus only on a few points, the main ones.
- The question of hell. Modern preaching tends to avoid this argument, and in general the theme of the Novissimi (death, judgment, hell and Paradise), not to mention certain theology that denies the very existence of hell (it is not clear from what Christ would come to save us …) or that they consider it empty (Our Lady, on the other hand, clearly says that there are many souls who go there) as a judgment of condemnation that is eternal would not be compatible with the “merciful and good” God (adjectives used in an absolutely false and non-Catholic sense) that today it is so fashionable to be preached. Jacinta reports that the Virgin would reveal that the sins for which the greatest number of souls go to hell are the sins of the flesh. Sr. Lucia also debunks the “false myth” that you should not talk about hell to children so as not to frighten them, which God did not hesitate to do with the three of them.
- The need for repair and conversion. God’s forgiveness is not free. There is a price to pay otherwise, even here, you would not understand the reason for christ’s sacrifice, his passion and death on the cross. His Holy Wounds, His Most Precious Blood, His sorrows are the price he has already paid for us. But that does not mean that we are not asked for anything. We are asked to accept this gift by obeying God’s commandments, to offer our sufferings by associating them with those of Christ, and we are asked to sincere repentance and to embark on a serious journey of conversion. The greatest act of charity we can do towards others is to offer prayers and sacrifices also for those who do not pray and do not offer sacrifices, for the conversion of sinners and for the salvation of souls which is much more important than that of the body. Lucia also recalls that Our Lady has recommended making sacrifices for the conversion of poor sinners, it is therefore completely false that God does not like our sacrifices offered for his and his brothers’ sake.
- The punishments of God. Always according to the usual false concept of mercy is not conceived, and in fact today it is almost no longer preached, that God can punish and chastise (yet Sacred Scripture is full of examples that prove otherwise). The vision of Fatima clearly shows the threat that, if men had not stopped offending God and Russia had not consecrated itself to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, there would have been a war “even worse than the one in progress” (and so it was with the Second World War) and that God’s intention to punish the world would be foretold by a signal of light that would light up the sky overnight. And this signal happened, as reported in the newspapers of the time, on the night between 25 and 26 January 1938 (from 8.45 pm to 1.15 am) when a light, which astronomers would then define as a Northern Lights (which is absolutely anomalous for our latitudes and interpretation that Lucia expressly declares not to share), illuminated the skies of Europe until Rome. The following year, World War II officially broke out… The “solutions”, the means, to avoid the punishments of God and obtain the conversion of one’s own and the sinners are: prayer, sacrifices, devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, life of grace, sacraments (in particular Confession and Restorative Communion).
- Russia will spread its mistakes. The reference is clearly to communism, the bloodiest ideology in history with its hundred million deaths worldwide, still well rooted both in politics (in some states, think of the immense China), and in materialistic and relativist thought and in customs and lifestyles (almost everywhere). Marxism as a denial of God is incompatible with Christianity.
Although the content of this apparition may seem somewhat distressing, in reality the vision ends with a message of hope: “In the end my Immaculate Heart will triumph!”