In 1917, an angel and Our Lady appeared six times to three shepherd children in Fatima, Portugal. Jacinta (7 years old) and Francisco (9 years old) were brother and sister. Lucy Dos Santos (14 years old) was their cousin. Jacinta and Francisco both died several years after the apparitions.
Francisco was born on June 11, 1908. During the apparitions Francisco could see but not hear what was being said. He had a great love of praying before the Blessed Sacrament. He also had a great devotion to praying the Rosary. He received his first communion on the day of his death, April 4, 1919.
Jacinta was born on March 11, 1910. Jacinta could both hear and see what was said during the apparitions. She was profoundly affected when Our Lady told her that Jesus was very offended by sin. After seeing a vision of hell, she decided to offer herself completely to the salvation of souls. She offered her suffering to free souls from the fires of hell. A year after the apparitions she came down with bronchial pneumonia, an abscessed lung and then was diagnosed with tuberculosis. She offered all of her suffering to Jesus. She was rushed to a hospital in Lisbon. The Blessed Virgin visited her there three times. She died without the presence of her parents or Lucy on Feb.20, 1920.
Lucy was born on March 22, 1907. After the apparitions Our Lady told her that her cousins would soon be in heaven and that Lucy should spread the devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Our Lady said
“My Immaculate Heart will be your refuge and the way which will lead you to God.”
It was Lucy who requested a miracle so people would believe in the apparitions. During the investigations surrounding the apparitions, Lucy was harassed. She entered the Sisters of St. Dorothy as Sister Mary of the Sorrowful Mother. Later she became a Carmelite Sister taking the name Sister Maria Lucia. She had several more visions of Our Lady. Lucy died on Feb. 3, 2005 at the age of 97.
During the apparitions in Fatima three secrets were revealed to the children.
1. After being promised they would go to heaven the children saw a vision of hell which was filled with fire and demons.
2. Mary instructed the children how to save souls from Hell and convert the world to Christianity. She asked them to spread the devotion to the Immaculate Heart and to pray the Rosary. She asked them to pray for Russia.
3. The children had a vision of the assassination of the Holy Father.
Many believe the third secret was a prophecy of the attempted assassination of Pope John Paul II. Pope John Paul II canonized Francisco and Jacinta Marto on May 13, 2000.
If men knew the meaning of eternity,
they would do anything to mend their lives.
Quote of St. Jacinta of Fatima
February is the Month of the Passion of the Lord.