The Miracle of the Sun, which took place on the 13th of October 1917, is far from being the only element which makes the apparitions at Fatima exceptional. Several other characteristics distinguish these apparitions from all others, in particular the prophecies which Our Lady confided to the little seers.
These prophecies are important, because they are an absolutely infallible mark of the divine origin of the message. Only God can know the future. Saint Thomas teaches :
The revelation of future events are the most rigorous part of the prophecy ; the name ‘prophecy’ even seems to come from this. Saint Gregory was thus able to write : « Prophecy, whose nature is to predict the future, loses the meaning of its name when it speaks in the past or the present. » (Summa Theologica, IIa-IIae, q. 171, art. 3)
To know future events is proper to divine intelligence, in whose eternity all things are present ; therefore, such knowledge of the future cannot come from nature, but only from divine revelation. (Summa Theologica, IIa-IIae, q.172, art.1)
At Fatima, not only did the Holy Virgin confide to the little shepherds a number of very unusual prophecies in the private revelations, but many came to pass very soon after they were announced.
Here are the principal ones, in chronological order of their happening :
The 13th of May, the 13th of June, the 13th of July, the 19th of August 1917
• The days when Our Lady appeared.
Concerning the little shepherds, the announcement that Our Lady would come six times on the 13th of the month is a veritable prophecy because it was impossible for them to know in advance how many times and on what days the Holy Virgin would come. Moreover each time, at the place indicated, witnesses were able to observe exceptional exterior phenomena (See Newsletter n°8).
The 13th of June 1917
• The rapid deaths of Francisco and Jacinta, while at the time of the apparitions they were in perfect health.
• A longer life for Lucia, who effectively lived to be 98 years old.
The 13th of July 1917
• The election of a Pope bearing the name of Pius XI. Pius XI was effectively successor to Benedict XV, who was Pope at the time of the apparitions.
• The announcement of a strange light just before the Second World War (the night of the 25th to the 26th of January 1938 ; see newsletter n°20).
• The announcement of a new world war soon after this light, a war more terrible than the previous one.
• The announcement that Russia was going to spread her errors throughout the world ; in other words, that communism would expand considerably, even though it had just appeared in Moscow (the coups d’état against the Tsar took place in March and October 1917).
The 13th of July, 19th of August and 13th of September
The day and the hour of the Miracle of the Sun. During the three months which preceded it, the Miracle was announced three times.
The 13th of July and the 13th of October
• The announcement that the end of the war was very near, at least for Portugal.
In fact, following the unexpected election of President Sidonio Pais in December 1917 (three months after the apparitions), Portugal withdrew her troops from the theatre of operations, beginning in April 1918.
In hindsight, the prophecy regarding Russia’s errors is really astonishing because it began to happen only a few days after the last apparition. In fact, it was on the 6th of November 1917 (the 24th of October, by the Russian calendar) that the ‘’October Revolution’’ broke out in Saint Petersburg, enabling the Bolsheviks to seize power. For at this time, Russia meant nothing to the little seers. Jacinta even thought that perhaps it was something to do with a very wicked woman. At the time, no-one could have imagined the establishment of a communist régime, or the creation of the USSR in 1922.
In the whole history of private revelations, no apparition carries with it such a large number of prophecies, with so many details, and covering such a short space of time. Moreover, many of these prophecies have been realised to the letter. On the 13th of May 2007, the day of the 90th anniversary of the apparitions, Pope Benedict XVI himself recognised that « The apparitions of Our Lady of Fatima are without any doubt the most prophetic of modern apparitions. » (Quoted by Father Gruner in his Canonical Petition to Pope Benedict XVI.)
Such a quantity of prophecies, of which certain took place very quickly after they were announced, constitute an absolutely exceptional authentication of the divine origin of these apparitions. The Miracle of the Sun and the prophecies therefore give an importance to Fatima’s message which can be found in no other apparition. Moreover, this message itself is also unusually rich. Heaven had never before gone to the length of being so careful to authenticate the divine origin of the message.
For all these reasons, it is fitting to know this message well, and to make it our own : our efforts to thoroughly understand it should be commensurate with the care taken by Heaven to authenticate it.
It is also very important to make the message known around us. It was for precisely this reason that Cap Fatima 2017 was launched almost one year ago.
In union of prayer in the Immaculate Heart of Mary.
Yves de Lassus,
President, Cap Fatima 2017.
Some news from the Project
Following diverse difficulties encountered in the running of the site, it was necessary to change our server. This happened between the 7th and the 10th of March. Some of you were confronted with the resulting disruption. Please accept our apologies for any inconvenience caused.
Following the Newsletter n°21 on the Scapular, several of you have asked how to obtain a scapular medal. You can quite simply acquire anything to do with the scapular (a book about the history, a wool scapular, a medal) at the site of the Saint Joseph de Clairval abbey : http://www.traditions-monastiques.com/fr/5-medailles-religieuses-ste-vierge-marie
Even if there is no direct tie to Fatima, note that the 25th of March is the beginning of an exceptional exhibition of the Holy Tunic of Argenteuil, the garment worn by Christ all the way to the foot of the Cross. According to ancient tradition, it was woven by the Holy Virgin. For this reason, local tradition has always considered it not only as a relic of the Passion, but also as a Marian relic.
The Saint Denys d’Argenteuil basilica is 10 minutes by train from the Saint Lazare station (Line L). The exhibition is open every day from the 25th of March to the 10th of April, 10 a.m. to 10 p.m., except during services.