- WHY FATIMA
- FATIMA CENTER
- PRAYER & DEVOTION
by Father Nicholas Gruner, S.T.L., S.T.D. (Cand.)
In this article, we give the actual words of Our Lord and Our Lady to Sister Lucy concerning the most urgent request of the consecration of Russia. Our only hope is the prompt fulfillment of this request. We must do all we can to see that the Pope and the bishops consecrate Russia in a solemn and public way in the immediate future.
Our Lady came to Fatima in response to Pope Benedict XV's anguished cry to Her on May 5, 1917, asking Her to help him and all humanity to find peace. Our Lady responded eight days later on May 13, 1917, by coming for the first time to Fatima, to offer Her help and tell us all the one and only road to peace. On July 13, 1917, She explained this 'Peace Plan' further, and said that She would come back at a later time to ask the Pope to consecrate Russia to Her Immaculate Heart.
Fatima's Most Solemn Request
On June 13, 1929, Our Lady did come back as She promised, and on that day She made the request for the consecration of Russia. Here is Sister Lucy's own description of the apparition:
"I had asked and obtained permission from my superiors and confessor to make the Holy Hour from 11:00 p.m. until Midnight from Thursday to Friday. Being alone one night, I knelt down between the Communion rails in the middle of the chapel to say the prayers of the Angel, lying prostrate. Feeling tired, I got up and knelt, and continued to say them with my arms in the form of a cross.
"The only light came from the sanctuary lamp. Suddenly a supernatural light illumined the whole chapel and on the altar appeared a cross of light which reached to the ceiling. In a brighter light could be seen, on the upper part of the cross, the face of a Man and His body to the waist, with a Dove of Light on His breast and, nailed to the cross, the body of another Man.
"A little below the waist, suspended in mid-air, was to be seen a Chalice and a big Host on to Which fell some drops of blood from the face of the Crucified and from a wound in His breast. These drops ran down over the Host and fell into the Chalice. Under the right arm of the cross was Our Lady (Our Lady of Fatima with Her Immaculate Heart in Her hand)… Under the left arm, some big letters, as it were of crystal-clear water running down over the altar, formed these words: 'Grace and Mercy'.
"I understood that it was the mystery of the Most Holy Trinity that was revealed to me…"
Of course, every time Our Lady speaks, She speaks in the name of the Most Holy Trinity, but this time She explicitly spoke in God's name, because She said: "The moment has come when God asks the Holy Father, in union with all the bishops of the world, to consecrate Russia to My Immaculate Heart, promising to save it by this means." So it is very clear that it is by means of the Pope and the bishops together consecrating Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary that Russia will be converted, will be saved. There is no other immediate cause. Our Lady says it is "by this means".
Our Lord Confirms This
There are several other occasions in which Jesus and Mary show that it is uniquely the consecration of Russia by the Pope and the bishops that will convert Russia and bring peace to the world. We have the conversation of Sister Lucy with Jesus, which she wrote about in a letter dated May 18, 1936:
"Intimately I have spoken to Our Lord about the subject and not too long ago I asked Him why He would not convert Russia without the Holy Father making that consecration and Jesus replied: 'Because I want My whole Church to acknowledge that consecration as a triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary'." Sister Lucy protested, "But my God, the Holy Father probably will not believe me unless You Yourself move him with a special inspiration." Jesus replied, "Pray, pray a great deal for the Holy Father. He will do it but it will be late."
In this whole conversation it is clearly understood by both Jesus and Sister Lucy that Russia will be converted only by the act of consecration by the Pope and bishops — otherwise the conversation would be meaningless.
The Persecution Will End Only Through Consecration
We also have the closing remarks of Our Lady on July 13, 1917: "…Russia will spread its errors throughout the world, raising up wars and persecutions against the Church: the good will be martyred, the Holy Father will have much to suffer, various nations will be annihilated: finally My Immaculate Heart will triumph, the Holy Father will consecrate Russia to Me, which will be converted and a period of peace will be given to the world." Clearly Our Lady will win, and victory will be Hers when the Holy Father, together with all the bishops, makes the act of consecration in the manner specified. On that day, the power of God will be manifest in such a way as has not been seen from the beginning of the world, not even in the great biblical theophanies. Even the smallest child will know that the conversion of Russia will have been caused by this act of obedience by the Pope and bishops.
God promises to save Russia by this means, and world peace will follow the conversion of Russia. This is because the new, Catholic Russia will become a great missionary power, spreading the true faith with the same zeal that it once spread the errors of Marxism-Leninism all over the world. On that day, Russia will be delivered from the grasp of Satan, and meekly submit to the sweet yoke of Our Lady, giving incomparable glory to God. From there the Queenship of Mary will spread over the whole earth, preparing the world for the universal reign of Christ the King. Yes, God has promised to save Russia by this means — and with what consolation for us — because the promise is unconditional, and therefore we can even say that God is "honor bound" to convert Russia through this act of obedience.
Thus the consecration of Russia concerns our souls even more than our temporal interests. Since it is so important for so many souls — who will not be saved except through this act of obedience — God indicated many years ago that there will be a severe chastisement of the Pope and the bishops — not to mention the whole Christian people and the rest of the world — if they continue to delay the execution of this vital request of the Queen of Heaven. God, Who is all merciful and all just, would not threaten such great chastisements if there were not a very good reason. Jesus foretold the chastisements to Sister Lucy in August, 1931, just two years after this solemn request was given, and only a few months after Pope Pius XI declined to fulfill it:
"Make it known to My ministers that it has been given to them that they follow the example of the King of France in delaying the execution of My command, and that they will follow him into misfortune."
The mention of the King of France refers to a request given to him on June 17, 1689 through St. Margaret Mary, to consecrate his country in a solemn and public way to the Sacred Heart. The king and his successors refused for 100 years, so that on June 17, 1789, the king was stripped of his power by the Revolution,1 and four years later he was publicly executed by the guillotine.
So, the consecration of Russia is not just a sort of devotional nicety — an extra that we can do without — but something which is essential, absolutely necessary. On this point the words of Our Lord, in August 1931 and May 1936, are completely consistent, and confirm what Our Lady had already said in July 1917 and June 1929 — we are to understand literally that "by this means" — that is, when the Pope and the bishops join together to publicly and solemnly consecrate Russia to the Immaculate Heart — Russia will be converted, saved, and peace given to the world.
We have no other choice — it is our duty to obey Jesus when He says, 'make this known to My ministers'. It is not the spirit of disrespect or contumely, but rather our filial attachment and love to our bishops and their sacred office that makes us publish these things, for only by knowledge of this request and obedience to it will they be saved from the unhappy fate of the king of France. It is our duty to publish the truth about this vitally urgent need we have for the consecration of Russia. It is a duty incumbent on all of us, especially we who publish about the Message and Miracles of Fatima. It is also your duty to tell your bishops (in the spirit of filial love and obedience) and others. Jesus wants His whole Church to know about it. That is reason enough for us to speak with insistence on this act of consecration.
1. By the Third Estate.