There’s a great new film out called Fatima that is a beautiful retelling of the events of the apparitions in Portugal in 1917. It is very realistic and brings alive the historical and social context in which Our Lady appeared to the three shepherd children.
Often this apparition is looked at in a kind of an overly sentimental way. In this film, World War I and the political and social situation of the time, make us see it very differently. What really impressed me is the resistance, doubt, confrontation and persecution that the 3 young shepherds had to endure. They stayed firm and strong under huge pressure.
Fatima is a message for our time. We need to be aware of and embrace the challenges to faith in our time with the same perseverance and trust in God of Lucia, Francisco and Jacinta.
The effects of the pandemic take on the magnitude of a World War and we need to recognize how challenging it is, in order to know it’s the Lord to whom we should turn for our strength and unity in vision! Yet the COVID crisis is happening in a world in which Atheistic rationalism has continued to undermine the faith of so many. The social repercussions of the pandemic have become uncertain and frightening to so many.
In St. Luke’s version of the beatitudes, Jesus looks intently at the disciples and says “Blessed are you poor, blessed are you thirsty, blessed are you hungry,” meaning the disciples will have to go through hard times.
Let’s not rashly jump to conclusions to think the world is about to end soon. Rather, hear this call to know the Lord is whom we should turn to for strength. The All-Powerful Father is directing the course of history towards salvation and fullness of life in Christ.
Our Lady’s message in Fatima is precisely of conversion, reparation and prayer of the Holy Rosary. We are to be messengers too!
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About Father Jim Phalan, C.S.C.
Father James Phalan, C.S.C., is a Catholic priest, member of the Congregation of Holy Cross and the National Director of Family Rosary. He served as a missionary for many years travelling the globe to help people come to Jesus through Mary as part of the Family Rosary team. Now he is happy to be serving back at home in the USA!