But tidings from the east and the north shall alarm him, and he shall go forth with great fury to exterminate and utterly destroy many. And he shall pitch his palatial tents between the sea and the glorious holy mountain; yet he shall come to his end, with none to help him (Daniel 11:44-45).
May 11, 2017
On July 13, 1917 the Blessed Virgin informed the children that the day would come when she would ask the Holy Father to consecrate Russia to her Immaculate Heart. Eleven years and eleven months later on June 13, 1929 she came to Sister Lucia in the Dorothean convent in Tuy, Spain to make this request.
The text here was copied from her notes by her confessor at the time Rev. Fr. José Bernardo Gonçalves, S.J. and is reported in Appendix II of Fatima in Lucia’s own words pp. 201-02:
Rev. Fr. Gonçalves sometimes came to our chapel to hear confessions. I went to confession to him and, as I felt at ease with him, I continued to do so for the three years that he remained here as Assistant to the Fr. Provincial.
It was at this time that Our Lady informed me that the moment had come in which she wished me to make known to Holy Church her desire for the Consecration of Russia, and her promise to convert it. The communication was as follows:
13-6-1929. I had sought and obtained permission from my superiors and confessor to make a Holy Hour from eleven o’clock until midnight, every Thursday to Friday. Being alone one night, I knelt near the altar rails in the middle of the chapel and, prostrate, I prayed the prayers of the Angel. Feeling tired, I then stood up and continued to say the prayers with my arms in the form of a cross. The only light was that of the sanctuary lamp. Suddenly the whole chapel was illumined by a supernatural light, and above the altar appeared a cross of light, reaching to the ceiling. In a brighter light on the upper part of the cross, could be seen the face of a man and his body as far as the waist, upon his breast was a dove also of light and nailed to the cross was the body of another man. A little below the waist, I could see a chalice and a large host suspended in the air, on to which drops of blood were falling from the face of Jesus Crucified and from the wound in His side. These drops ran down on to the host and fell into the chalice. Beneath the right arm of the cross was Our Lady and in her hand was her Immaculate Heart. (It was Our Lady of Fatima, with her Immaculate Heart in her left hand, without sword or roses, but with a crown of thorns and flames). Under the left arm of the cross, large letters, as if of crystal clear water which ran down upon the altar, formed these words: “Grace and Mercy.”
I understood that it was the Mystery of the Most Holy Trinity which was shown to me, and I received lights about this mystery which I am not permitted to reveal.
Our Lady then said to me:
The moment has come in which God asks the Holy Father, in union with all the Bishops of the world, to make the consecration of Russia to my Immaculate Heart, promising to save it by this means. There are so many souls whom the Justice of God condemns for sins committed against me, that I have come to ask for reparation: sacrifice yourself for this intention and pray.”
I gave an account of this to the confessor, who ordered me to write down what Our Lady wanted done.
Later, in an intimate communication, Our Lord complained to me, saying:
“They did not wish to heed my request!… Like the King of France, they will repent and do it, but it will be late. Russia will have already spread her errors throughout the world, provoking wars, and persecutions of the Church: the Holy Father will have much to suffer.”
First a word about the setting. It is interesting to see that this occurred during while Sister Lucia was making a Holy Hour on Thursday night from 11pm to midnight at the start of Friday. This practice was introduced, or perhaps reintroduced, into the life of the Church by the revelations to Saint Margaret Mary Alacoque of the Sacred Heart a quarter of a millennium before. The saint was instructed to practice this devotion in honor of Our Lord’s Agony in Gethsemane between the close of the Last Supper and his arrest in that garden: the start of his Passion. And if you check you will find that June 13, 1929 was a Thursday. Just an interesting little tidbit for our contemplation.
What is being requested here is an Act of Faith, a very pronounced, very public Act of Faith. And in this age that we live in which is almost universally godless that is not easy. But the question is ultimately very simple: do we believe or do we not believe?
This request once it was handed to the Holy Father Pope Pius XI by whatever intermediary brought it must have produced a knot in his gut, a shaking in his joints, and a confusion in his mind similar to that which we experience when we are called upon to make the Sign of the Cross and bless ourselves before a meal in a crowded restaurant at a table full of our carousing friends or acquaintances or business associates, except that it would have been to the power of about twelve million.
The world was in crisis in 1929. Russia had been in the hands of the Bolsheviks for more than a decade and reports from inside that country must have been flowing to Pius XI for a long time about the atrocities they were committing and the general annihilation of the Church in that country since 1917. The Bolsheviks were also setting up advance guards and revolutionary cells across Europe and threatening to overthrow governments in every country on earth. As a result fascist movements rose up from the gutter of society promising to defend the people from Communism and to fight terror with terror. The flock was under serious threat and what was left of Christian civilization seemed like it was about to be laid waste.
The Church was now looked upon as nothing more than a superstitious laughingstock by the governments and societal elites and large segments of the urbanized working class in those countries that she founded so long ago and had sustained through so many grievous trials in the past. And now here comes this Portuguese nun telling the Pope that she had a vision at a convent in Spain referring her back to something that had happened in a field when she was ten years old and oh by the way he was now supposed to get all of the bishops of the world together to consecrate Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary and all of our problems would be solved. Just like that.
Fine, but what if she is making this up, or is delusional, or doesn’t remember right. Sure Pius XI must have heard something about the sun dancing in October, 1917 but that was twelve years ago, and it wasn’t widely known outside of Portugal. For some curious reason the international press never decided to cover it. So fine, what if I, Pope Pius XI, decide to unite with all of the bishops of the world to consecrate Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary– and nothing happens?
What if all I hear is laughter from Moscow and from Berlin and from Mussolini’s Blackshirts in Rome? What kind of position would the Church be in then? And then once Pope Pius XI makes the decision not to do it why would any of his successors want to make him look bad by contradicting him?
These are the games the devil can play with your mind, you know it and I know it. Pray for the Holy Father. Pray that he unite with all the bishops of the world to consecrate Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. The hour is late, very late: we need to pray and sacrifice for this intention and we need to start yesterday.