The History of Fatima
After July 13 the devil realized the importance of these apparitions so he started to attack them with open fury. Just how far he went in his attack even during the apparitions you will see in this article. Although we have published this information before it seems that we should publish this account now at this point of our continuing history of Fatima. To help you understand how men could so violently oppose Our Lady of Fatima and Her message of maternal love and concern for us we offer here a brief background at the start of this episode.
The message of Fatima is most significant and important for the salvation of souls. However, the message of Fatima, and Our Lady’s appearance there, is also very important for the correct ordering of human society in this world. As Our Lady of Fatima pointed out, if mankind would listen to Her message, then the peaceful ordering of individuals, families, cities and countries and in fact the whole world, would be achieved. Such a claim for peace through all levels of society and throughout the whole world could only be achieved if enough individuals at every level of society cooperated in the plan. And this plan could only succeed if it were based on the designs of the Creator of mankind, Who has appointed Jesus Christ, the Redeemer of mankind, as King of kings and Lord of lords (Apoc. 19:16). Jesus is King, not only of individuals but also of societies and the whole world. Therefore if this plan of the Blessed Virgin Mary, who is Queen of Heaven and of earth, is to work, mankind must acknowledge the sovereign Kingship of Christ over all mankind. Thus one can understand that the prince of this world, as Jesus Christ referred to the devil, would not accept easily the destruction of his kingdom here on earth. Nor would the peace plan from Heaven be accepted by those men, associations and secret societies whose power and ill-gotten riches would be lost if the peace plan from Heaven were put into effect.
|Francisco, previous to receiving the Fatima Message, felt some little reluctance to pray the Rosary every day. Upon understanding the urgency of Our Lady of Fatima’s Message, he used to pray at least six Rosaries a day, he spent many hours a day visiting Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament and offered many voluntary sacrifices and mortifications to Jesus and Mary. This issue is written with the view to help you understand the extreme need for prayer and penance that you and your family are in need of in view of the problems that the Church and the world are faced with today. Let us imitate little Francisco and overcome any reluctance we might have by starting today on a fervent life of prayer.|
The more he thought, the more the Administrator was convinced that he had hit upon the perfect plan to put an end to the embarrassing happenings at Fatima. It should be so easy to kidnap the children! On Monday, just as they were setting out for the Cova, he would drive up to the house with his horse and wagon. He would be very kind and gracious. He would even apologize for his previous harsh words. Then he would beg the parents' permission to drive the three children to the sheep pasture. He would assure them that he was beginning to believe in the heavenly Lady, and that he wished to be on hand at the Cova as a pilgrim. Surely they couldn’t refuse him permission to escort the children in his wagon, especially since he was doing it in a spirit of reparation?
On the morning of the thirteenth day of August, the Administrator put the first part of his unholy plan into action. With a grand flourish he drove up to the Marto house, where the children and their families were assembled, and asked permission to take Lucia, Francisco and Jacinta to the Cova. It was a hot day, he said, and more than two miles to the sheep pasture. Surely the children would be very tired if they had to walk the entire distance, and on a road crowded with curious strangers?
The little ones shook their heads. They were used to walking, they said. If need be, they could take a roundabout way through the fields and so escape many of the pilgrims. But when Manuel Marto heard that the Administrator wished to question the three in the presence of the parish priest, he decided that the proffered ride ought to be accepted.
“It would never do for you to be late for the Lady,” he told the children.
The interview with Father Ferreira did not last long. In fact, only Lucia was questioned — and not too kindly this time — for by now the good pastor of Fatima was inclined to think that the child was lying. After all, there had been nothing but trouble and annoyance at the rectory ever since the middle of May. Strangers knocking at the door at all hours, questions, complaints, ridicule … And now here was the Administrator of Ourem, a man who could cause real trouble for the church!
“Lucia, who taught you to say the things that you are going about saying?” asked the priest severely.
“The Lady whom I saw at the Cova, Father.”
“Anyone who goes around spreading such wicked lies as the lies you tell will be judged, and will go to hell if it isn't true. More and more people are being deceived by you.”
Lucia did not flinch. “Father I won’t go to hell. I don’t lie, and I tell only what I have seen and what the Lady said to me. As for the crowds …”
“They come only because they want to. We don’t call anybody.”
“Is it true that the Lady told you a secret?”
“Tell it, then.”
“I can’t tell it. But if you like, I’ll ask the Lady, and if She gives me permission, then I’ll tell you.”
“Come, come,” said the Administrator irritably. “All this is holy talk, and I’m not interested.”
A few minutes later, with Lucia and Jacinta in the back seat, Francisco in the front, the Administrator climbed in his wagon, gave a quick tug at the reins, and headed his high-spirited horse down the road. But almost immediately Lucia gave a cry of alarm.
“Please sir, we’re going the wrong way!”
The Administrator chuckled. “I know. But I thought we’d make a quick trip to Ourem. I want the three of you to meet the parish priest there.”
Francisco’s eyes clouded with dismay. “Ourem? But we haven’t time sir! The Lady always comes about noon. Please turn back!”
“Yes!” cried Jacinta. “It would be just terrible if we were late!”
Once again the Administrator smiled his crafty smile. “Don’t worry, children. I’ll bring you back in my automobile. You’ll be at the Cova in plenty of time for your Lady.”
For a while all was silence as the wagon rumbled along the highway. Then the outline of Ourem came into view, and Lucia’s eyes brightened as they noted a steeple glistening in the sun. The church! Probably the parish priest lived only a few steps away, and they could see him at once. Then, what joy! They could be on their way back to Fatima. Once again the Lady would stand atop the holm oak. She would encourage Her little friends to pray and make sacrifices for sinners. Perhaps there might even be a new message …
Suddenly Lucia’s blood ran cold. The wagon wasn’t stopping at the church or rectory, but before a large and imposing residence. As the child turned to the Administrator, her eyes were dark with suspicion.
“This isn’t the priest’s house!”
“No? What is it then?”
“It’s … it’s where you live!”
The man laughed harshly. “Quite right, my girl. And remember this: the jail isn’t far away. Come, now — out with the three of you!”
The jail! Francisco and Jacinta cringed as the Administrator jerked them from the wagon. What was going to happen? What was this terrible man going to do?