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By Deacon Keith Fournier

5/13/2014 (11 months ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

On this day when we remember the message of Our Lady of Fatima, pray for the conversion of Russia. Pray for the conversion of the United States of America. Pray for the conversion of the world.

On July 26, 2000 the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith issued The Message of Fatima 
It should be read by anyone who seeks to understand the approach that the Church, as mother and teacher, takes to private revelation. In that document the Congregation specifically addressed what is referred to as the Third Secret of Fatima. It was explained to Saint John Paul II by Sr. Lucia, one of the visionaries. Few messages have ever received as much interest as this third secret, at least in some in contemporary Catholic circles. The interest has sometimes led to excessive curiosity and, in some circles, some of the reaction has smacked of a contemporary form of Gnosticism.  The core of the message of Fatima, when properly understood and received, is a call to genuine conversion to Jesus Christ. It is a little gospel. The children were told by Mary, the Mother of God, to tell all of us to repent from sin, do penance, turn back to Jesus Christ.

A representation of Our Lady of Fatima

A representation of Our Lady of Fatima

Highlights

By Deacon Keith Fournier

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

5/13/2014 (11 months ago)

Published in Europe

Keywords: Mary, Marian, Our Lady of Fatime, Russia, Thrisd Secret, Deacon Keith Fournier


DALLAS, TX (Catholic Online) - From May 13, through October 13, in the year 1917, Mary, the Mother of the Lord appeared to three children, Lucia, Francisco, and Jacinta in Fatima, Portugal.

Among the numerous topics she addressed was Russia. During these same months, the Bolshevik revolution was underway. Atheistic Marxism seized hold of that once great Nation and subjugated the people for decades.

On July 26, 2000 the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith issued The Message of Fatima 

It should be read by anyone who seeks to understand the approach that the Church, as mother and teacher, takes to private revelation. In that document the Congregation specifically addressed what is referred to as the Third Secret of Fatima.

It was explained to Saint John Paul II by Sr. Lucia, one of the visionaries. Few messages have ever received as much interest as this third secret, at least in some in contemporary Catholic circles. The interest has sometimes led to excessive curiosity and, in some circles, some of the reaction has smacked of a contemporary form of Gnosticism. 

The core of the message of Fatima, when properly understood and received, is a call to genuine conversion to Jesus Christ. It is a little gospel. The children were told by Mary, the Mother of God, to tell all of us to repent from sin, do penance, turn back to Jesus Christ.

Then, to live lives of prayer and sacrifice in order to participate in the redemptive mission of Jesus Christ as it continues through the work of the Church, which is his body. Some of what was told to the children concerned the consequences which would occur if people did not exercise their freedom properly by turning away from sin and turning back to God. 

In the context of the document on the Fatima message, the Congregation noted: Sister Lucia had already given an indication for interpreting the third part of the "secret" in a letter to the Holy Father, dated 12 May 1982:

The third part of the secret refers to Our Lady's words: If not [Russia] will spread her errors throughout the world, causing wars and persecutions of the Church. The good will be martyred; the Holy Father will have much to suffer; various nations will be annihilated' (13-VII-1917).

The third part of the secret is a symbolic revelation, referring to this part of the Message, conditioned by whether we accept or not what the Message itself asks of us: 'If my requests are heeded, Russia will be converted, and there will be peace; if not, she will spread her errors throughout the world, etc.'.


Since we did not heed this appeal of the Message, we see that it has been fulfilled; Russia has invaded the world with her errors. And if we have not yet seen the complete fulfillment of the final part of this prophecy, we are going towards it little by little with great strides. If we do not reject the path of sin, hatred, revenge, injustice, violations of the rights of the human person, immorality and violence, etc.

And let us not say that it is God who is punishing us in this way; on the contrary it is people themselves who are preparing their own punishment. In his kindness God warns us and calls us to the right path, while respecting the freedom he has given us; hence people are responsible.

Now is where I will raise some eyebrows with some of what I am about to say. Is what is happening  in Russia, with a resurgence of Orthodox Christianity,  a partial fulfillment of the promised conversion of that Nation offered by Our Lady to the children of Fatima?

With the resurgence, there has been a marked re-embrace of fundamental moral norms. t Russia, as official policy, is now defending marriage as between one man and one woman, open to life and formative of family.

In 2013, President Putin signed legislation outlawing advertisements for abortion in Russia. This was a part of a growing recognition of the Rights of children in the womb as restrictions on abortion continue to grow.

Parents are being encouraged to have children and the public policy of the Russian government is being adapted to promote such fruitfulness and hold it up for respect, protection and emulation. 

The Russian Orthodox Church is free to speak clearly and authoritatively to the Russian people on matters of faith and morals in Russia today. Indications are that there is a resurgence of Christianity underway. There is a warming in the relationships between the Catholic and Orthodox Churches.

To those who are raising their eyebrows, I am not being naive. I am not saying the President Putin has fully embraced the Christian faith. However, he claims that he has. Like many, I find his handling of the Crisis in the Ukraine deeply troubling and ominous.

However, I also find it distressing that our own President Obama, who professes to be a Christian, has intentionally promoted policies and laws which threaten the sanctity of marriage and the family.

He has stopped his ears to the cry of the poorest of the poor in their mother's womb and refuses to defend their Right to Life. He seeks to silence the prophetic and moral voice of the Church in our Nation.

I love the United States of America. I know that the goodness in the soul of America will not be extinguished. However, I am first, last and all in between, a Catholic Christian. And, I recognize that something quite promising is happening in Russia and we should see it as a hopeful sign. 

As Christians, we should have a heart which longs to see every Nation and every people find the fullness of God's love in Jesus Christ. We are all called to be missionaries, by virute of our Baptism into Christ and His Church.

Could the resurgence of Christian faith in Russia be a part of the promise of Fatima being fulfilled? Could the warming of relations between the Bishop of Rome, the successor of Peter, and the Patriarch of Russia be a sign of the healing of the ancient divisions within the Christian community?

Might this all lead to a resurgence of Christian faith around the world and the dawning of a new missionary age? I pray that it does and ask you to do the same.  

On this day when we remember the message of Our Lady of Fatima, pray for the conversion of Russia. Pray for the conversion of the United States of America. Pray for the conversion of the world.

---


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