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Cardinal Burke's Historic Address on the
Consecration of Russia and the Third Secret

by Christopher A. Ferrara
May 22, 2017

In my column of April 24, I expressed the view that "the laity must take the lead in speaking the truth about our situation" in the midst of this endlessly turbulent pontificate because "it is certain there is no help on the way from the Princes of the Church."

I am very happy to abandon that opinion where Cardinal Raymond Burke is concerned. I have already reported here that at the just-concluded Rome Life Forum, which met to address the growing Bergoglian crisis post-Amoris Laetitia, Cardinal Burke called for the Consecration of Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary with these words:

"Certainly, Pope Saint John Paul II consecrated the world, including Russia, to the Immaculate Heart of Mary on March 25, 1984. But, today, once again, we hear the call of Our Lady of Fatima to consecrate Russia to her Immaculate Heart, in accord with her explicit instruction."

Publication of the full text of his address by LifeSiteNews, however, reveals that the Cardinal was not suggesting that the 1984 ceremony effected Russia's consecration, which should merely be done again, but rather that the consecration Our Lady requested was not done in the first place. Quoth the Cardinal:

"In fact, the consecration of Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary did not take place, as she requested, and the Communion of Reparation on the First Saturdays did not become the practice of the universal Church."

For decades, Father Nicholas Gruner was mocked and marginalized for insisting upon this obvious truth. But now a Prince of the Church has declared it to the world without equivocation. May God bless him for it.

But there is something just as important in this historic address. While being prudent about his manner of expression, Cardinal Burke implicitly confirms that the Vatican has not disclosed the entirety of the Third Secret. The relevant passages merit quotation at length (bolding and paragraph breaks added for readability):

"The third part of the Secret, indicated by the "etc." at the end of the second part, has to deal with the spiritual chastisement brought about by the rebellion of man who instead of giving his heart to the Sacred Heart of Jesus through the Immaculate Heart of Mary gives over his heart to the corruption of the worldly materialism and relativism of the age...

"Without entering into a discussion regarding whether the third part of the Secret has been fully revealed, it seems clear from the most respected studies of the apparitions of Our Lady of Fatima, that it has to do with the diabolical forces unleashed upon the world in our time and entering into the very life of the Church which lead souls away from the truth of the faith and, therefore, from the Divine Love flowing from the glorious pierced Heart of Jesus. Frère Michel de la Sainte Trinité, in his monumental study of the apparitions of Our Lady of Fatima, writes the following regarding the third part of the Secret or what is often called the Third Secret:

"'In short, the triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary undoubtedly refers much more to the third Secret than even the second. For the recovery of peace will be a gift from Heaven, but it is not, properly speaking, the triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Her victory is of another order, supernatural, and then temporal by addition. It will first be the victory of the Faith, which will put an end to the time of apostasy, and the great shortcomings of the Church's pastors.'

"As horrible as are the physical chastisements associated with man's disobedient rebellion before God, infinitely more horrible are the spiritual chastisements for they have to do with the fruit of grievous sin: eternal death….

"The teaching of the Faith in its integrity and with courage is the heart of the office of the Church's pastors: the Roman Pontiff, the Bishops in communion with the See of Peter, and their principal co-workers, the priests. For that reason, the Third Secret is directed, with particular force, to those who exercise the pastoral office in the Church.

"Their failure to teach the faith, in fidelity to the Church's constant teaching and practice, whether through a superficial, confused or even worldly approach, and their silence endangers mortally, in the deepest spiritual sense, the very souls for whom they have been consecrated to care spiritually.

"The poisonous fruits of the failure of the Church's pastors is seen in a manner of worship, of teaching and of moral discipline which is not in accord with Divine Law."

As we can see, Cardinal Burke — undoubtedly with the Bergoglian tumult in view — has essentially adopted the position of the long-derided "Fatimites," especially Father Gruner, even citing Father Gruner's internationally promoted primary source: Frère Michel de la Sainte Trinité's "monumental study of the apparitions of Our Lady of Fatima." In particular, the Cardinal affirms:

  • that the Third Secret begins with Our Lady's reference to Portugal, ending with Lucia's famous "etc." indicating further words of the Virgin;

  • that the Secret predicts a terrible crisis of faith and discipline — a veritable apostasy — involving "the failure of the Church's pastors" from the Pope on down to "teach the faith, in fidelity to the Church's constant teaching and practice" — a clear reference to Amoris Laetitia, among many other disastrous hierarchical departures from Tradition over the past fifty years;

  • that the resulting spiritual chastisement is "infinitely more horrible" than the material chastisement seen in the vision published in 2000.

Now, none of what the Cardinal affirms pertaining to the contents of the Secret is seen in the vision of the "Bishop dressed in White" standing alone, where one sees only an attack on the Church from enemies without in the midst of a post-apocalyptic scenario involving a material chastisement. Rather, these elements, as he himself declares, must be found in the words of the Virgin for which Sister Lucia held the place with that telltale "etc." — those three little letters that have bedeviled the Vatican apparatus since 2000, which it pointedly refuses to address. It is precisely those precious words that the Vatican has withheld from us.

The Cardinal's courageous declarations are all the more remarkable in that they represent a substantial reversal of his previous position on the Fatima event. (There is no need to dredge up those details now.) This change of mind and heart is a testimony to the Cardinal's intellectual honesty and his love for the Church and, above all, for souls.

Every Catholic should pray for the well being of Cardinal Raymond Burke and for the emergence of many other cardinals who will emulate his profile in courage. For humanly speaking (absent a direct divine intervention of the most drastic sort), it is first and foremost the Princes of the Church who must defend her against the unparalleled attack from within that she now endures — an attack that stands at the heart of the Third Secret of Fatima.

ADDENDUM: I cannot fail to mention the important contribution of Cardinal Caffarra at the same conference. In his address he declared: "We are no longer witnesses, but deserters, if we do not speak openly and publicly... I have spoken frequently of a confrontation... assuming the appearance of a trial, of a legal proceeding, in which the defendant is Jesus and his Gospel. As in every legal proceeding, there are also witnesses in favour: in favour of Jesus and his Gospel. Announcement of the Gospel of Marriage and of Life today takes place in a context of hostility, of challenge, of unbelief."