AUTUMN 1916 – THE THIRD APPARITION OF THE ANGEL
This time the three little shepherds were with the flock at the same place, where the Angel appeared to them for the first time (Loca de Cabeco).
“As soon as we arrived there, we knelt down, with our foreheads touching the ground, and began to repeat the prayer of the Angel. I don’t know how many times we repeated this prayer, when an extraordinary light shone upon us. We sprang up to see what was happening, and beheld the Angel.
He was holding a chalice in his left hand, with the Host suspended above it, from which some drops of blood fell into the chalice. Leaving the chalice suspended in the air, the Angel knelt down beside us and made us repeat three times:
‘Most Holy Trinity, Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, I offer You the most precious Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity of Jesus Christ, present in all tabernacles of the world, in reparation for the sacrileges, outrages, and indifferences by which He Himself is offended. Through the infinite merits of His Most Sacred Heart and the Immaculate Heart of Mary, I beg of You the conversion of poor sinners.’”
“Then rising, he took the chalice and the Host in his hands. He gave the Sacred Host to me, and shared the Blood from the Chalice between Jacinta and Francisco, saying as he did so:
‘Take and drink the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ, horribly outraged by ungrateful men! Make reparation for their crimes and console your God.’
Once again, he prostrated on the ground and repeated with us, three times more, the same prayer ‘Most Holy Trinity…’ and then disappeared.
Moved by a supernatural force which enveloped us, we had imitated the Angel in everything, that is, we prostrated as he did and repeated the prayers that he said. We remained a long time in this position, repeating the same words over and over again.”
The central mystery in this third apparition is the most Holy Eucharist.
The angels guide us always to Our Lord, and concretely to Jesus Christ dwelling in the most Blessed Sacrament. And in this brief account we find so much light and truth:
- He was holding a chalice in his left hand, with the Host suspended above it, from which some drops of blood fell into the chalice.
Before we enter into the proper mystery that is being spoken of, this sentence itself is a deadly blow to all who deny the mystery of the Blessed Sacrament. It underlines the Catholic truth and is a strong refutation of the Protestant errors, which are repeated by the Modernists. In fact, one of the worst attacks of the enemy in latter times will be to diminish (and if possible to destroy) the Faith within the faithful by introducing the so called “Ecumenical Way”, to present the different Christian religions as options and participants in the invisible “Kingdom of God,” where everybody has to appreciate and learn from each other. The result of such a “Brotherly Dialogue” is an internal contradiction: either Jesus is really present in the Host or not! Protestants say “no,” Catholics say “yes”. If both are only options, then there is no objective truth any more, but just subjective “views”, and everybody can believe what he wants.
Against this plague, the Angel of the Eucharist rises up in Fatima declaring the Catholic doctrine as the only true one.
Moreover, he insists on making the following precision: “I offer You the most precious Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity of Jesus Christ, present in all tabernacles of the world…” This is almost a verbal repetition of the text in the Roman Catechism and the dogmatic formula of the Council of Trent. It specifies the very presence of Our Lord in the most Blessed Sacrament.
Even more: The presence of Jesus in all tabernacles of the world is another insistence that He is in all tabernacles and only there: but where are the tabernacles? Only in Catholic Churches! What an incredible and amazing statement in 1916, when exactly 50 years later, the post-Vatican II reforms provoked a universal diminishing of the Real Presence of Our Lord in the tabernacle among Catholics.
Let us now meditate the contents of the vision itself:
What does “blood coming out of the Host” mean?
The Holy Host is the true Body of Our Lord united with His Soul, His Humanity, and His Divinity. If blood comes out of a body it means that the body is not in his normal healthy state, but he is ill, he is wounded, and the more blood he loses, the more his life is in danger. And wounds mean sufferings! This happened to Our Lord when He suffered His passion and died on Calvary, suspended on the Cross.
If now the Host shows the same flood of blood coming out of His Body, that means that the Holy Eucharist, and specifically the Holy Mass IS the renewal, the presence of Calvary, of Our Lord crucified. And here we have the following amazing teaching of Fatima like a prophetic warning for the times to come.
As if the Angel would say: “Attention, you children of God, the Eucharist, the Holy Mass is NOT the “Paschal Mystery”, the “gathering of the people of God” around the table to commemorate the Pasch of the Lord, a joyful banquet. It is not the definition of the Mass, which will be issued in the first edition of the Novus Ordo Missae in 1969.
But it IS the sacrifice of Our Lord on the Cross – its re-presentation and renewal on the altar. And you should kneel before the Host as I kneel with the children to adore the Holy wounds of Jesus, His incredible suffering and death, “for the remission of sins”.
God foresees all things. He has foreseen the most terrible crisis to come into the world and Holy Mother Church. Therefore, He wants to assist us, to console us, to give light in the darkness. We must see the apparitions in Fatima in this dimension.
Finally, let us now ask what happened in the second half of the 20th century?
Who in the Church upheld the reality of the Real Presence of Our Lord?
Who kept the Traditional Catholic Faith in the Most Blessed Sacrament?
“The Society of Saint Pius X must therefore orient the priest towards – and have him concretize in his daily life his raison d’être: the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, what it all means, all that flows from it, all that complements it.” (Statutes 2,2)
For almost 20 years, the Society of Saint Pius X was almost the only church institution to defend, proclaim, and promote the Traditional Faith in the Holy Eucharist and the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. When all over the world the Novus Ordo Missae devastated the faith of the Catholics, destroyed the altars, and brought into the minds a Protestant conception of the Eucharist, Archbishop Lefebvre and his spiritual sons were almost alone to uphold the message of the Angel of Fatima, and therefore they were severely punished. It was for these times, that God sent the Angel, and afterwards Our Lady Herself to comfort his faithful children, to give them courage in trials and persecutions, to show clearly what the Truth is, and not to let themselves be discouraged even by the highest churchmen, who are only servants of the Truth and not their masters.
- “Leaving the chalice suspended in the air, the Angel knelt down beside us”:
We should never forget that the differences between the angels and human beings are almost unlimited. Saint Thomas proves that the inner value of one angel is more than the whole visible world. However, before the most Blessed Sacrament, the Angel joins the children and accomplishes the same acts of adoration. How great GOD must be, if the angels humble themselves before Him and consider themselves as dust and nothing, similar to all other creatures?
Another aspect is the very fact that the Angel joins the children.
It is God’s will that men and angels, visible and invisible world, form one choir, one congregation united to praise and worship Him. The more the members of the Militant Church unite themselves with the members of the Triumphant Church (angels and saints), the more our worship is agreeable to God, and the more we are in the right atmosphere to worship Him. In Heaven there is no sin, nor distraction, nor any other remnant of weakness, which we unfortunately are full of. Therefore, in joining the heavenly choirs (Cf. Preface of the Holy Mass), we are able to penetrate more deeply the true atmosphere in which we live, and thus be freed from our own deficiencies.
Finally, this gesture of the Angel (with the children) shows the attitude which pleases God, because the Angel coming from Heaven certainly cannot do anything, which would not sovereignly please God: the prostration is a visible sign of making oneself lower, to exalt the object of our veneration – Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament is God, and prostrating before Him we recognize that He is our first Principle and our last End, our King and the Cause of all, what we are and what we have; and on the other hand, that we are completely dependent on Him and belong to Him in all things. This attitude of the true condition of a creature (I am nothing – God is everything!) is also the essence of humility, the only attitude which pleases God.
Another truth of the Faith, less and less known, which the Angel of Fatima recalls with insistence, is the extreme gravity of sin and the necessity to make reparation through love.
The beginning of his prayer is already an act of reparation: “I ask pardon of You for those, who do not believe…” It invites us to consider the immense injury done to God by all those who do not believe in Him, or believing, refuse to submit to Him through adoration, who do not hope and do not love Him. For all these faults, reparation must be done.
By asking pardon in the name of sinners, in substituting oneself for them to obtain mercy for them!
During the second apparition, the Angel teaches the children the practice of sacrifice, offered in reparation to God, for the sins by which He is offended.
But what is the most perfect act of reparation?
The third apparition will teach us: the sins for which the Angel invites us to make reparation are the sacrileges, outrages, and indifference by which He Himself is offended.
And how do we have to make reparation? “Take and drink the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ, horribly outraged by ungrateful men! Make reparation for their crimes…”
We offer to the Father, in the Holy Spirit, Our Lord Himself present in all tabernacles of the world. So we unite ourselves spiritually to Jesus Christ, offering Himself at the Mass in a sacrifice of satisfaction and propitiation “for the salvation of many”. We offer His Body delivered up for us, His Blood poured out, His soul in awful agony, and finally His Divinity, which is full of “pardon and mercy” (Cf. the Vision of Tuy, June 13, 1929). To these infinite merits of the Sacred Heart of Jesus we join those of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, His Mother, our Mediatrix and Co-Redemptrix, to offer them together to the Heavenly Father and obtain from Him the conversion of sinners.
This act of reparation finds its ultimate reality in HOLY COMMUNION.
Already at this moment, the Angel teaches the children the famous COMMUNION OF REPARATION, which will become one of the essentials of the devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.
We should learn by heart the formula of the Angel, when he gives to the children the mystical communion.
This formula has a remarkable theological precision: Lucy shall receive the Host, and Jacinta and Francisco the Blood of the Chalice, but to all three the Angel says: “Take and drink the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ”, to show that whoever communicates under either species, receives Jesus Christ whole and entire, His Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity.
It also brings to mind, in a striking manner, how Jesus is outraged in the sacrament of His love. And the most perfect expiation and reparation we can make for these “indifferences, negligence, and outrages” is to receive Holy Communion in the spirit of reparation, to “console our God”. This practice is so important that Our Lady will ask for it again (in Pontevedra on December 10, 1925).
As a summary of the apparition of the Angel, we can state: When reading the account of these apparitions, one can find in them not the slightest hint of vulgarity, nothing incongruous, childish, or banal. Nor is there anything emphatic or artificial, just profound truths, expressed simply and vigorously. With very simple words and gestures the most profound truths of our Holy Faith are expressed. The frequent meditations of these apparitions will bring us into the true divine atmosphere, and prepare us (as they prepared the children) to approach Our Lady – or better – to allow Her to approach us. Moreover, if we accomplish what the Angels asks the children to do, we will learn the true attitude of a creature towards God, and the true appreciation of His presence amongst us, especially in the Blessed Sacrament.