Second Oceania Regional Congress in Samoa
From the 8th to 13th of October 2019, the World Apostolate of Fatima will hold its second Oceania Regional Congress, in the beautiful Pacific Island of Samoa, in Apia City, as part of the formation program for all nation members. The first Oceania Regional Congress was held in Suva, Fiji Islands, in year 2015.
The main theme for this regional conference is “Mary, our Queen Mother of unity and salvation”. The meeting open to members of the World Apostolate of Fatima as well as to observers from the Oceania region, will focus on the pastoral work of the Apostolate, especially the new evangelization program in Oceania, drawn from the Fatima message, which presents a challenge also for this region.
The six days programme is outlined in such as way as to include various moments of prayer, that is, daily Mass, Rosary and Adoration. Alongside with this, there will be talks offered on the message of Fatima, such as the First Saturdays of reparation and the importance for our modern times, the meaning of the consecration of the world to God through the Immaculate Heart of Mary, as well as some other specific formation topics, of major concern for this part of the world.
In order to immerse also in the local culture, there will be a cultural evening and some sightseeing tours in the island. Those wishing to participate or to gather more information on the Congress, please contact the WAF International secretariat at: email@example.com
Formation Program on the Message of Fatima
The World Apostolate of Fatima in the Philippines is offering a 7-day Comprehensive Formation Program on August 11-18, 2019 at the Don Bosco Retreat House, Talisay City, Cebu, Philippines. This intensive program is open to the leaders of the Fatima Apostolate in the Philippines as well as from any other country.
This initiative comes in line with the thrust and top priority of the World Apostolate of Fatima which is “the formation of leaders, lay people and families according to the ever relevant and ever urgent Message of Fatima”, and is also the first fruit of the 3rd WAF Asian Congress which was held in February, at Calcutta, India.
The Formation Program of the Basic Seminar, developed in two main modules, will cover various topics, both about the catechetical elements of the Message of Fatima and about the communication skills of leaders.
The need for formation in the Apostolate is also a direct answer to Our Lady’s instruction to the three shepherd children when she said to on June 13, 1917: “I want you to learn to read…”. The leaders of the World Apostolate of Fatima must be fully equipped with the knowledge of the Message so that they can in turn properly evangelize and teach others to heed Our Lady’s call at Fatima.
Fatima Anniversary Pilgrimage of May 2019
The International Anniversary Pilgrimage of May 12th and 13th of May, this year at the Shrine of Fatima, Portugal, will be presided over by Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle, Archbishop of Manila, Philippines.
With this, a special attention is given to the Asian continent, now that the number of pilgrims from that region, coming to Fatima, is increasing year after year. As an example, in the first four months of the current year, the Sanctuary of Fatima registered sixty of these groups that participated in the official celebrations of the Shrine. The South Korean pilgrims were the most expressive Asian group followed by the Philippines and the Sri Lankan.
The World Apostolate of Fatima, with a massive presence also in the Philippines, is encouraging people to make that experience of a pilgrimage to Fatima, by offering the richness of Our Lady’s message and, in this way, to awake in people the desire to come to Fatima, at least once in a life time. In line with this, at the end of May, the Apostolate in the Philippines will hold its 22nd Biennial National Convention in Tangum City, with the theme: “Time of Grace and Mercy: To Give Thanks to Pilgrimage in the Church and the Filipino Youth”, in tune with the pastoral theme of the Shrine of Fatima for year 2019.
WAF Asian Congress in India
From the 3rd to the 5th of February 2019, the World Apostolate of Fatima, as part of their formation program, held in Calcutta, India, its third Asian regional congress. The selected theme was “...God wishes to establish in the world devotion to My Immaculate Heart...” (Our Lady of Fatima, 13 July 1917): “Into the abode of the Immaculate Heart of Mary with St Teresa of Calcutta”. The 10th Indian National Meet of the Apostolate was also celebrated together with this congress.
The majority of the delegates and observers arrived in Calcutta on the 2nd of February, First Saturday of the month and Feast of the Presentation of the Lord. In the evening, there was a candlelight procession from Don Bosco’s Nitika, reciting the Holy Rosary and then celebrating the Holy Mass, presided by Msgr. Thomas D’ Souza, the Archbishop of Calcutta. Among the participants, there were Prof. Americo Pablo Lopez Ortiz, WAF international President, from Puerto Rico; Mr. Nuno Prazeres, director of the International Secretariat at Fatima, Portugal and other guests from Sri Lanka, Philippines, South Korea and also from Oman. From India, there were 32 delegates, 40 observers, including 17 Priests and 5 nuns, from various dioceses. Four bishops have also attended the congress at different timings.
Feast of Saints Francisco and Jacinta Marto
On February 20, the liturgical Feast of Saints Francisco and Jacinta Marto, the two little shepherd children of Fatima, is celebrated. The devotion to these new saints is increasing all around the world and there are many parishes and prayer groups commemorating this Feast date with some liturgical celebration.
As an example, the Shrine of Fatima in Valenzuela City, Philippines, has prepared for this year a three day program in honour of St. Francisco and St. Jacinta, including the veneration of their relics and some other devotional moments.
At the Shrine of Fatima, in Portugal, the program includes a vigil on the 19th, with the prayer of the rosary, candlelight procession and veneration of the Saints at their tombs. The celebration continues on the 20th with the prayer of the rosary in the Little Chapel of the Apparitions, followed by the procession with the icons of St. Francisco and St. Jacinta towards the Basilica of the Most Holy Trinity, where Holy Mass will be celebrated. During the afternoon, also in the Basilica of the Most Holy Trinity, there will be an encounter with the children for a catechesis.
The ‘Day of the Little Shepherds Francisco and Jacinta Marto´, will also be commemorated, for the first time, as a municipal holiday, in Juranda, city of the Diocese of Campo Mourão, in Paraná, Brazil, where Lucas, the child of the miracle that opened way to the canonization of the two children, lives.
Francisco Marto was born in Aljustrel, Fatima, on June 11, 1908, and his sister Jacinta Marto was born in the same locality, on March 11, 1910. In their humble family, the children learned to know and to praise God and the Virgin Mary. In 1916, they saw three times an Angel and in 1917, they saw six times the Blessed Virgin Mary, asking them to pray and to make penance for the conversion of sinners and to obtain peace in the world. Both, immediately, wanted to answer with all their strength, to these exhortations. More and more inflamed in the love to God and to the souls, they had only one aspiration: to pray and to suffer according to the requests from the Angel and the Blessed Virgin Mary. Francisco died on April 4, 1919 and Jacinta on February 20, 1920. Pope Saint John Paul II travelled to Fatima on May 13, 2000, in order to beatify the two children. Pope Francis came to Fatima on May 13, 2017, during the Centenary of the Apparitions, and canonized the two first non-martyr children in the history of the Church.
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