by Fr Richard Heilman | April 25, 2016 6:33 PM
May 13th of this year marks one year until the 100th anniversary of the apparition of Our Lady to three shepherd children in the small village of Fatima in Portugal in 1917. She appeared six times to Lucia, 9, and her cousins Francisco, 8, and his sister Jacinta, 6, between May 13, 1917 and October 13, 1917. But, in the Spring of the year prior to Our Lady’s appearance, an angel appeared to the children to prepare them. That would make this, right now, the 100th anniversary of that angelic visit.
For those who are tuned into dates such as these, and tuned into the tumultuous times in which we live, there is a sense that “something is coming.” For more and more people, there seems to be an urgency to “prepare.” I wrote about this HERE.
St. Maximilian Kolbe had this strong sense that something was coming when on October 16, 1917 – just 3 days after the Miracle of the Sun in Fatima – he founded the confraternity known as “The Militia of the Immaculata,” a movement whose purpose is to convert sinners, heretics, and especially Masons, and to sanctify all under the patronage and through the intercession of the Immaculate Virgin Mary.
Much like those who are utilizing “new media” today, to better “win the world for the Immaculata,” he and his fellow friars utilized the most modern printing and administrative techniques. This enabled them to publish countless catechetical and devotional tracts, a daily newspaper with a circulation of 230,000 and a monthly magazine with a circulation of over one million. Maximilian started a shortwave radio station and planned to build a motion picture studio–he was a true “apostle of the mass media.”
Bishop Athanasius Schneider has called us to this same task, as he said:
“We must make use of all the resources that the modern world offers to us. We are not confined to waiting for the media to spread these messages. We do not have to wait for each individual pastor to preach them from the pulpit. We should embrace the new media forms that allow us to spread the Gospel and the teachings of our Holy Mother, the Church. We should take our message to the Internet, publish it on websites, blogs, and social media.”
In order to prepare for the “something coming” St. Maximilian Kolbe sensed, he modified the St. Louis de Montfort 33-day preparation for consecration to just 9 days, to make it more accessible. He simply had to get as many as possible consecrated in the shortest period of time. Hundreds of thousands of people were consecrated to Jesus through Mary, seemingly overnight.
“While St. Maximilian Kolbe’s push for consecration was the largest,” according to Father Michael Gaitley, “the one going on right now is the second-largest ever, and the largest since St. Maximilian Kolbe’s.” Father Gaitley went on to say “now is the perfect time” to consecrate ourselves to Jesus through Mary. He said the “culture of death is strangling our country right now.” He added that Our Lady is trying to “bring Christ back there,” saying she comes when things look hopeless. There’s a “historical reason” for the new push to consecration. Fr. Gaitley said. “there’s something happening, something moving, something ahead,” while no one knows specifically what is coming. “Our Lady wants to be embracing all of us,” he added.
Consider Cardinal Pacelli’s remarks before he became Pope Pius XII:
“I am worried by the Blessed Virgin’s messages to Lucy of Fatima. This persistence of Mary about the dangers which menace the Church is a divine warning against the suicide of altering the Faith, in Her liturgy, Her theology and Her soul … A day will come when the civilized world will deny its God, when the Church will doubt as Peter doubted. She will be tempted to believe that man has become God.”
Pope Benedict XVI (then, Cardinal Ratzinger) implores us to seek the strength of Mary:
“The Heart open to God, purified by contemplation of God, is stronger than guns and weapons of every kind. The fiat of Mary, the word of her heart, has changed the history of the world, because it brought the Saviour into the world—because, thanks to her Yes, God could become man in our world and remains so for all time. The Evil One has power in this world, as we see and experience continually; he has power because our freedom continually lets itself be led away from God.”
Yes! The fiat of Mary! This is the key to everything! We must learn this sweet and loving obedience that brings new life into such a soul. Obedience brings grace! So we ask ourselves, what has God shown us, and how can we obey? Here’s what we do to prepare for “something coming” …
With the full-on utilization of new media, we are embarking on this plan to bring souls back to Christ. The campaign begins by calling upon God to empower us in His grace.
First, go to Confession ASAP.
On May 4th (leading up to the Feast of Our Lady of Fatima), we will begin the Maximilian Kolbe’s 9-day version of the preparation for Total Consecration to Jesus through Mary.
All of the prayers for the 9-day preparation are found HERE.
If you would like daily offerings of each of the 9 days, join this Facebook group: HERE
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