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Living Our Faith: Our Lady of Fatima

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This year the Catholic Church celebrates the 100-year anniversary of the Marian apparitions at Fatima, Portugal, witnessed by three

A statue of Our Lady of Fatima is carried through a crowd in 2016 at the Marian shrine of Fatima in central Portugal, where Pope Francis plans to visit May 12-13 to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the 1917 apparitions of Mary. While tending sheep in a field, Lucia dos Santos and her two younger cousins, Francisco and Jacinta Marto, reported seeing a woman dressed all in white, "more brilliant than the sun, shedding rays of light clearer and stronger than a crystal glass filled with the most sparkling water and pierced by the burning rays of the sun." (CNS photo/Paulo Chunho, EPA) See MIDST March 23, 2017.
A statue of Our Lady of Fatima is carried through a crowd in 2016 at the Marian shrine of Fatima in central Portugal, where Pope Francis plans to visit May 12-13 to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the 1917 apparitions of Mary. While tending sheep in a field, Lucia dos Santos and her two younger cousins, Francisco and Jacinta Marto, reported seeing a woman dressed all in white, “more brilliant than the sun, shedding rays of light clearer and stronger than a crystal glass filled with the most sparkling water and pierced by the burning rays of the sun.” (CNS photo/Paulo Chunho, EPA) 

shepherd children who reported that they saw visions of Mary beginning on May 13, 1917.
Whatever the significance of the Fatima apparitions is for each us personally, this 100-year anniversary of these apparitions is a reminder of the central message of the Gospels, calling us to conversion and bringing us closer to Christ.
Celebrating the 100th anniversary of Fatima is, in a way, also the celebration of St. John Paul’s survival of an assassination attempt and the subsequent revelation of the third part of the Fatima secret.