Friday, August 19, 2005
This morning's news that the current pope has "asked President Bush to declare the pontiff immune from liability in a lawsuit that accuses him of conspiring to cover up the molestation of three boys by a seminarian in Texas" caused me to reflect upon the elements of an excellent summer novel I recently completed, The Third Secret by Steve Barry.
This suspense novel is highly enjoyable and concerns a message to humanity.
Many Catholics venerate Mary the mother of Jesus in a manner similar to the world’s ancient cultural veneration of an overarching mother-goddess.
Many ordinary people and theologians feel that Mary in her role as mother is a more approachable focus of everyday prayer and entreaty than our traditional western and Christian male images of godhead.
Also, unlike her male counterparts, Mary has reinforced her role as humanity’s spiritual mother, in a series of appearances beginning in 1347 and continuing to the near present day, by speaking directly to representatives of the human family.
Message revealed during the apparition at LaSalette, France, September 19, 1846:
The priests, ministers of my Son, the priests, by their wicked lives…have become cesspools of impurity…the righteous will be brought back to life…and be superior to people of the same identity. They will abolish civil rights…hate, jealousy, lies and dissension would be seen without love for country or family…All the civil governments will have one and the same plan…to make way for materialism, atheism, spiritualism and vice of all kinds…The seasons will be altered…the moon will only reflect a faint reddish glow. Water and fire will give the earth's globe convulsions and terrible earthquakes which will swallow up mountains, cities.
3rd Apparition at Lourdes, France, February 18, 1858:
I do not promise to make you happy in this world but in the other.
3rd Secret of Fatima, Portugal, July 13, 1917:
We saw in an immense light that is God…a Bishop dressed in White…going up a steep mountain, at the top of which there was a big Cross of rough-hewn trunks…before reaching there the Holy Father passed through a big city half in ruins…having reached the top of the mountain, on his knees at the foot of the big Cross he was killed by a group of soldiers who fired bullets and arrows at him, and in the same way there died one after another the other Bishops, Priests, men and women Religious, and various lay people of different ranks and positions.
John Paul II released the text of the 3rd secret in June of 2000.
Some people believe the Church heavily redacted Sister Lucia’s January 2, 1944 memoralization of the Blessed Mother’s July 13, 1917 statement to three rural Portuguese children, 9 year-old Francisco and 7 year-old Jacinta Martos and their cousin 10 year-old Lucia dos Santos (Sister Lucia) and speculate that the redacted portions might be similar to LaSalette’s warning of a corrupt priesthood.
Sister Lucia’s sealed 1944 memoralization of the secret was intended to be opened in 1960.
Popes from John the XXIII to John Paul II read the secret.
John XXIII said the secret did not refer to his pontificate.
Paul VI was reportedly “visibly shaken” upon reading the secret.
I feel if nothing else, the messages from these three most important apparitions make interesting reading in light of current world events.
In 1980, when asked about the 3rd Fatima secret by a group of Catholics in Fulda, Germany Pope John Paul II possibly hinted at redacted portions by wondering if they would be better Christians "if I told you that the oceans will flood entire sections of the earth, that from one moment to the other, millions of people will perish”.
Also interesting is Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger’s supervision of the 3rd Fatima secret’s release through the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and a statement the good Cardinal made in 1985:
To publish the third secret would mean exposing the church to the danger of sensationalism.