70,000 people witnessed the last public Apparition of the Blessed Virgin Mary at the Cova da Iria, near Fatima, Portugal on October 13, 1917.
Why am I blogging about this now? To fulfill a commitment I made when I started blogging about Fatima last year, that up through 2017 I would blog on the Fatima Apparitions on or about their anniversary because I think the Fatima message is very important for Catholics, including those in whatever stages of addiction recovery they are in. (NOTE: even though the publication date should read “October 13, 2015,” the post was actually written in late November 2015.). Due to a variety of circumstances, including sloth and this and that and the other thing, I’m late with this piece.)
Why did this Apparition take place? The “Miracle of the Sun” happened, as promised, to prove the Apparition’s authenticity. The sun started dancing in the sky, defying all known laws of physics, and was seen many miles away (so it wasn’t a localized event.)
Perhaps it is fortuitous that I am late with this post. Why? “Aren’t you just grasping at straws, Paulcoholic, so it would seem as if you can fall down and still come up smelling like roses?” It seems I did the same thing last year: Last year’s late post on the Solar Miracle. Well, maybe. BUT, think about some of the events that have happened in the world these past few weeks, after this post should originally have come out. The terror attacks in Paris, Lebanon and Nigeria. World War III probably getting warmed up in the Middle East. An increasingly insane US Presidential election campaign season. These are all frightening and worrisome things.
What happens when you are scared, at least when you were a child? You’d go running to your Mom!
Mary is our Mother. She cares for us and since we are the adopted children of God, we are Christ’s brothers and sisters, and thus we are her children, too.
Pope St. John Paul II greeted the world upon his appearance to the world as Pope with the words, “Be not afraid.” It is said that those words in various forms appear 365 times in the Bible, thus letting us know that we are not to fear whatever is going on.
The Miracle of the Sun was frightening. Imagine if you were there, you see the sun dance and whirl about, seemingly plummeting to the Earth. But no one was hurt. No humans were harmed in the occurrence of this apparition. The fact that it happened was a reassurance to all of the reality of the apparition and of Mary. (Satan would NOT ahave had the power to do this.)
And so some words to all: “Be not afraid.” It is hard. But having Faith is. No matter what is going to be happening in the upcoming years, have Faith. Hold fast to the Church, grab your rosaries and USE THEM! pray the Rosary daily. Get the Diary of St. Faustina (see: St. Faustina and Divine Mercy. Make use of the upcoming “Year of Mercy”.
Easy? No, especially if we rely on our own resources. This is why we also need God’s graces, which are there for the asking. Pray. Go to Mass. Go to Confession. Read Scripture (a good CATHOLIC Bible.) Pray some more.
Be not afraid…Know someone, perhaps yourself, who might like Catholic devotionals for alcoholics? Please take a look at my books! (Thank you!!)"The Stations of the Cross for Alcoholics"