Praying for the Triumph of the Immaculate Heart

We're coming up on the 100th anniversary of Our Lady's 1917 apparitions under the title of "Our Lady of the Rosary" to the three shepherd children at Fatima, Portugal.

But why do we care about apparitions that took place a century ago? We've received a number of signs, wonders, and other forms of private revelation in the past century, including the Divine Mercy message and devotion transmitted through St. Faustina Kowalska in the 1930s, the Kibeho apparitions of Our Lady under the title "Mother of the Word" to schoolchildren in Rwanda in the 1980s, and the recently approved San Nicolas, Argentina, apparitions from the mid to late 80s, ending in 1990. Why is Fatima still worth our time and attention today?

Simply because, as Pope Benedict XVI said in his homily at Fatima on May 13, 2010, "We would be mistaken to think that Fatima's prophetic mission is complete." How is that prophetic mission incomplete? Pope Benedict explained that Fatima reiterates the perennial message of Scripture, of man's fall and its consequences. The fall is repaired by the fidelity and sacrifice of Jesus Christ and all those joined to His Mystical Body, the Church.

Fatima is fundamentally about reparation for our sins and the sins of others. Now, we who live in such troubled times can be tempted to throw up our hands, say, "A pox on both your houses!" and give up. Fatima challenges us not to despair, not to give up, not to pray for the punishment of our age, but rather for the mercy of God. We are called to offer prayers and sacrifices for ourselves and those around us, for those innocents in danger as well as those most in need of God's mercy.

What will happen if we are faithful to Our Lady's calls (see our special Fatima section)? She promised on July 13, 1917, that if we do as she has asked, her Immaculate Heart will triumph in the end, and a period of peace will be granted to the world. How do we know that we're still waiting for the full triumph of the Immaculate Heart? Pope Benedict XVI concluded his homily in 2010 by saying, "May the seven years which separate us from the centenary of the apparitions hasten the fulfillment of the prophecy of the triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, to the glory of the Most Holy Trinity."

Those seven years are rapidly coming to an end. Let us set to work, preparing for the 100th anniversary of Fatima, asking Our Lady of the Rosary's intercession in all the needs of the present age, and inviting the triumph of the Immaculate Heart. To help Marian Helpers prepare for the 100th anniversary of the apparitions at Fatima, we've put together a Mary 101 Kit that includes an array of materials offering an overview of the Church's teaching about the Blessed Virgin Mary, some key Marian devotions such as the Hail Mary, the Rosary, and the Hail, Holy Queen, and a special Fatima Pack. The pack includes materials specifically about Our Lady's apparitions at Fatima and how to answer her calls.


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