NEW BISHOP OF FATIMA
On January 28, Pope Francis appointed Bishop José Ornelas, as the new bishop of the diocese of Leiria-Fátima, succeeding Cardinal António Marto.
The new bishop of Fatima is a member of the missionary congregation of the Dehonians - Priests of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. He is 68 years old and has been in charge of the diocese of Setúbal, in Portugal, since 2015. Besides, he is also the President of the Portuguese Episcopal Conference.
Cardinal Antonio Marto had presented his resignation to the Holy Father when he turned 74, last May 2021, because of his age and “aware of the enormous limits of his physical and psychological forces to properly exercise the office, in view of the pastoral demands of the Diocese and of the Shrine of Fatima” he said.
Bishop José Ornelas, in his first written message to the faithful of the diocese made a special reference to Fatima, saying:
"Fatima resonates in our ears and in our hearts, here in Portugal and in the world, as a very special place and a reference of the presence of God, also in a dramatic situation, similar to the one we live in. (...) Mary, loving Mother of the little ones is the image of the Church that we want to be, as heralds in this world."
The World Apostolate of Fatima expresses his gratitude to Cardinal Antonio Marto for his loving dedication to the diocese of Leiria-Fatima (2006-2022) and for his support to the World Apostolate of Fatima, in the quality of its ecclesiastical adviser.
A warm and joyful welcome to the new Bishop José Ornelas! Pray for him and for his fruitful mission.
The official entrance of Bishop José Ornelas in the diocese will occur on March 13, 2022, in the cathedral of Leiria.
Support the Renovation of the Shrine of Pontevedra
The World Apostolate of Fatima has decided to launch a worldwide campaign to collect donations to support the renovation works of the sanctuary of the Apparitions, in Pontevedra, Spain. The circular letter of the international president, presenting this initiative, can be read here.
The shrine of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, known as the Shrine of the Apparitions, in Pontevedra, Spain, is a place closely associated with the history and message of Fatima. It was there, in that former convent of the Dorothean Sisters, that Lucia de Jesus, the eldest of the Fatima seers, received the visit of Our Lady and the Child Jesus, in her cell - now transformed into a chapel - on December 10, 1925.
Our Lady asked her the devotion of the First Saturdays, in reparation to Her Immaculate Heart. Over the years, the old sanctuary building has been deteriorating and it is now urgent to carry out its proper rehabilitation in order to preserve the sacred place of the apparition and its spirituality.
The Bishop’s Conference of Spain is responsible for coordinating and supervising these efforts. The costs are very high! The donations collected by the Secretariat of the World Apostolate of Fatima will be handed over to the Bishop’s Conference by the end of this year. We count on your generous contribution!
Donations can be sent by bank transfer to:
The goal is that, in year 2025, when the Centennial of the Apparition of Pontevedra occurs, the Shrine of the Immaculate Heart of Mary will have the necessary and dignified facilities to welcome all pilgrims who visit it. Let us therefore be generous! And let us remember Our Lady’s promise at Fatima: “In the end My Immaculate Heart will triumph”.
October 13th, 2021: Children’s Eucharistic Holy Hour
This October 13th, anniversary of the last apparition of Our Lady in Fatima, there will be the 19th edition of the Annual Worldwide Children and Youth of the Eucharist program, broadcasted by EWTN (https://www.ewtn.com/) to over 150 countries, through its Spanish and English channels.
The program includes the celebration of the Holy Mass and Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament by children and youngsters with the intention to offer reparation for the sins of humanity, for an end to the pandemic, for the conversion of poor sinners, for peace of the world and the triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary promised at Fatima. The children will consecrate themselves and their families to the Immaculate Heart of Mary and, with them, all the children and youngsters and their families.
The World Apostolate of Fatima, again, will join this event, in all the places where the movement is present, honouring Our Lady of Fatima with this spiritual bouquet of flowers, inspired by Saint Francisco and Saint Jacinta Marto. Read here the message of the WAF International President for this day.
Pilgrim Statue presented as “the face of a missionary Church"
In a video produced by the Shrine of Fatima for the series "Faces of Fatima", Nuno Prazeres, the director of the International Secretariat of the World Apostolate of Fatima, speaks about the importance of the travels of the Pilgrim Virgin Statue of Our Lady of Fatima around the world.
As the guest of another video of the series "Faces of Fatima", which, every month, presents the faces that integrate the new temporary exhibition of the Shrine of Fatima, Nuno Prazeres presents, in this episode, the Pilgrim Statue of Our Lady of Fatima as the "face of a missionary Church".
“Today, just as yesterday, Mary continues to travel in haste to where she is called. She becomes a pilgrim travelling the roads of the world, bringing consolation and hope to the hearts of a humanity so often wounded and distressed, a humanity which seeks peace. But she never imposes herself! Each visit to any country or place is the result of an invitation, of a pastoral desire often matured over months or even years”, he says, deducing a "recognition of the importance of the message of Fatima" in the "numerous requests of the Pilgrim Statue".
From the painted wooden World Map, from 1956, on display at the exhibition, which describes the first travels of the Pilgrim Statue, Nuno Prazeres revisits some of the most symbolic pilgrimages that the Pilgrim Statue has fulfilled, over almost 75 years.
“During the first nine years of her pilgrimages, as we can see on this World Map, the Statue travelled more than half a million kilometres and was welcomed by more than 300 million people. In Europe, during this period, Our Lady travelled as a Symbol of Peace, inspiring unity and solidarity amongst nations in the aftermath of a world war which had caused divisions and destroyed so much” he recalls.
The video also evokes the famous 'Peace flights’ that carried the the second Pilgrim Statue to visit many countries, on various continents, under the World Apostolate of Fatima, a movement founded in the United States of America by Monsignor Harold Colgan and John Haffert, faces that are also present in the temporary exhibition of the Shrine of Fatima.
The exhibition "The Faces of Fatima - Images of a Spiritual Setting" is open until October 15, 2022, at the Convivium of St. Augustine, in the lower floor of the Basilica of the Holy Trinity, and can be visited, free of charge, every day from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm and from 2:00 pm to 6:00 pm. (www.fatima.pt)
Special Year of Saint Joseph
Pope Francis has proclaimed a “Year of Saint Joseph” starting on 8 December 2020, the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception and extended to the same date in year 2021. This decision, coinciding with the 150th anniversary of the declaration of Saint Joseph as Patron of the Universal Church by Pope Pius IX, is an opportunity to turn our eyes and prayers to Saint Joseph, model of a beloved and obedient father, who despite his discreet and hidden presence, played an incomparable role in the history of salvation.
Reflecting on Saint Joseph, particularly at this time of the coronavirus pandemic, can strengthen our faith and inspire our actions. Many are making hidden sacrifices to protect others, just as St. Joseph quietly protected and cared for Mary and Jesus.
In the message of Fatima, God calls us to turn our eyes to the Holy Family of Nazareth, particularly with the apparition of October 13th, 1917. Sister Lucia writes in her Memoires: “After Our Lady had disappeared into the immense distance of the firmament, we beheld St. Joseph with the Child Jesus and Our Lady robed in white with a blue mantle, beside the sun. St. Joseph and the Child Jesus appeared to bless the world, for they traced the Sign of the Cross with their hands.”
This vision, reminds us that in these troublesome times, we can and should turn to the Holy Family to draw inspiration for our own lives. In particular, we can turn for help to Saint Joseph, the head of that household, the protector and provider of the Holy Family.
The World Apostolate of Fatima, having Saint Joseph as one of its patron Saints, whose statue with the Child Jesus stands on the top roof of Domus Pacis, the headquarters of our International Apostolate, prays for his powerful intercession for strengthening families, the Church, our Apostolate and asks him to bless the world with Christ’s peace.
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