Fatima centenary: The First Apparition of the Angel of Peace

fatima children

In the words of Ven. Lúcia de Jesus Rosa dos Santos (Irmã Maria Lúcia de Jesus e do Coração Imaculado, O.C.D.:

“We went on that occasion to my parents’ property, which is at the bottom of the Cabeco, facing east. It is called Chousa Velha.

“About the middle of the morning it began to drizzle and we climbed up the hill, followed by our sheep, in search of a rock that would shelter us. And so it was that we entered for the first time into that blessed place. It is in the middle of an olive grove that belongs to my godfather, Anastacio. From there one can see the village where I was born, my father’s house, and also Casa Velha and Eira da Pedra. The olive grove, which really belongs to several people, extends as far as these places.

“We spent the day there, in spite of the fact that the rain had stopped and the sun was shining in a clear sky. We ate our lunch and began to say the Rosary. After that we began to play a game with pebbles. We had only been at it a few moments when a strong wind began to shake the trees and we looked up to see what was happening, since it was such a calm day. And then we began to see, in the distance, above the trees that stretched to the east, a light whiter than snow in the form of a young man, quite transparent, and as brilliant as crystal in the rays of the sun. As he came near we were able to see his features. We were astonished and absorbed and we said nothing to one another. And then he said:

‘Do not be afraid. I am the angel of peace. Pray with me.’

“He knelt, bending his forehead to the ground. With a supernatural impulse we did the same, repeating the words we heard him say:

‘My God, I believe, I adore, I hope, and I love You. I ask pardon for those who do not believe, do not adore, do not hope, and do not love You.’

“After repeating this prayer three times the angel rose and said to us:

‘Pray in this way. The hearts of Jesus and Mary are ready to listen to you.’

“And he disappeared. He left us in an atmosphere of the supernatural that was so intense we were for a long time unaware of our own existence. The presence of God was so powerful and intimate that even among ourselves we could not speak. On the next day, too, this same atmosphere held us bound, and it lessened and disappeared only gradually. None of us thought of talking about this apparition or any pledge of secrecy. We were locked in silence without having willed it.

“His words sank so deeply into our minds that we never forgot them, and ever after we used to spend long periods on our knees repeating them, sometimes until we fell down exhausted.

“I don’t know why, but the apparitions of our Lady produced in us effects quite different from the angel’s visitations. We felt in both instances the same intimate happiness, peace and joy, but instead of the physical prostration the angel imposed, our Lady brought a feeling of expansion and freedom; and instead of this annihilation in the divine presence, we wished only to exult in our joy. There was no difficulty of speech when our Lady appeared; there was rather on my part a desire to communicate.”

Meanwhile, to the Polish pilgrims at the General Wednesday Audience, Pope Francis said that Our Lady of Fatima:

“invites us once again to turn to prayer, penance, and conversion. She asks us to never offend God again. She forewarns all humanity about the necessity of abandoning oneself to God, the source of love and mercy. Following the example of St. John Paul II, a great devotee of Our Lady of Fatima, let us listen attentively to the Mother of God and ask for peace for the world.”

Meanwhile, my little comment is that we might take notice of the description of the angel, and know that our own guardian angels are very much like this, and very much in the same way want us to pray in reparation for others. Memorize the words and repeat them today about a gazillion times out of love of God and neighbor. Ask your own guardian angel for help:

‘My God, I believe, I adore, I hope, and I love You. I ask pardon for those who do not believe, do not adore, do not hope, and do not love You.’

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