The message of Fatima is a message that is relevant for all times. The focal point of this particular article is the 100th anniversary of the Angel of Peace and the significance of this Jubilee Year of Mercy set forth by our Holy Father Pope Francis, ahead of the 100th anniversary of the apparitions of Our Lady of Fatima in 2017.

In the spring of 1916, the angel appeared, saying, “Do not be afraid. I am the Angel of Peace. Pray with me.” The three children knelt with the angel and reverently repeated this prayer:

“My God, I believe, I adore, I hope and I love you! I ask pardon of you for those who do not believe, do not adore, do not hope and do not love you!” Having repeated these words three times, the angel rose and said: “Pray thus. The Hearts of Jesus and Mary are attentive to the voice of your supplications.” Then the angel disappeared.

Sister Lucia, in her memoirs, stated, “The supernatural atmosphere which enveloped us was so intense that we were for a long time scarcely aware of our own existence, remaining in the same posture in which he had left us and continually repeating the same prayer. The presence of God … was felt so intimately and so intensely we did not even venture to speak to one another.”

As we reflect on this, we see the work of God’s mercy for all mankind. In our society today, many people continue to offend Our Lord. If we pray, do penance and make sacrifices for these offenses, God will show his mercy to all people. God is always merciful and ready to forgive us, as soon as he sees that we desire to amend our lives and are truly sorry. This message instructs us to not only amend our lives, but also forgive our brothers and sisters.

St. Peter, in Mathew 18:21-22, asked Jesus how many times we are to forgive. Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you seven times, but seventy times seven.” We must always forgive and show mercy, as God shows his mercy to us.

In the second apparition of the Angel of Peace, the angel tells the children: “Pray! Pray very much! The Hearts of Jesus and Mary have designs of mercy on you.”

The three shepherd children participated in these designs of mercy. They obtained abundant graces for the Church and for all of mankind throughout many years of tribulation and darkness. These children totally consecrated themselves to the Immaculate Heart, allowing themselves to be formed by Mary and to fully embrace her mission to the world.  

As a result, they became great channels of mercy and conversion for the Church and the world. With this wonderful example, we must become like little children, humble and obedient, and guided by Our Lady to hear the designs of the Sacred Heart of Christ that rest in the Immaculate Heart of Mary. We must also participate in the designs of mercy that the Hearts of Jesus and Mary have for us in our lives.

In the third apparition of the Angel of Peace, he appeared holding a chalice in his hands, with the Host above it, from which drops of blood were falling into the sacred vessel. Leaving the chalice and Host suspended in the air, the angel prostrated on the ground and repeated this prayer three times:

Most Holy Trinity, Father, Son and Holy Ghost, I adore thee profoundly and offer thee the most precious Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Jesus Christ, present in all the tabernacles of the earth, in reparation for the insults, sacrileges and indifference with which he is offended. And through the infinite merits of his Most Sacred Heart and of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, I beg thee for the conversion of poor sinners.

After this prayer, the angel proceeded to give the children holy Communion. Sister Lucia said this was the most important part of the message of Fatima for the children. This drew them closer to God and instilled in their hearts the importance of the Real Presence in the holy Eucharist. The entire message of the angel contains an urgent call to prayer, sacrifice and reparation to the Most Holy Trinity and our Eucharistic Lord. 

At Fatima, with its events and message, they form for us a large piece of God’s divine plan for mercy for our times. The little shepherds of Fatima saw many ways to help save souls through God’s mercy. He asks us to honor the Heart of Mary, the maternal, most-pure love of Mary. This means to open our hearts to her love and to offer our hearts to be formed in the love of Christ. Therefore, let us turn to the Immaculate Heart of Mary in this special year of mercy and address her — on her feast day and always:

Hail, holy Queen, Mother of Mercy, our life, our sweetness and our hope …

 

John Preiss is president of Fatima Family Apostolate International.


INFORMATION

EWTN has a website about Fatima: EWTN.com/fatima/