Francisco and Jacinta to be canonized during Pope Francis’ visit to Fatima May 13

Pope Francis will canonize Blessed Francisco and Jacinta Marto at Mass during his visit to Fatima May 13, 2017, making them the youngest non-martyrs to ever be declared saints. The decision was made April 20 by a consistory of cardinals.

Pope St. John Paul II beatified Francisco, 11, and Jacinta, 10, on May 13, 2000, 83 years after the first apparition of the Blessed Mother at Fatima in 1917. It was during the May 13 apparition that Our Lady told the children she would take Francisco and Jacinta to heaven soon, but Lucia would remain on earth for “some time longer.”

The beatification of her two cousins was something Sister Lucia had asked for during her first meeting with Pope St. John Paul II on May 13, 1982 at Fatima. The Pope expressed his desire also to see the little shepherds soon beatified. Before the end of their meeting that day, they completed their visit in the Basilica at the tombs of Francisco and Jacinta.

According to Sister Lucia’s biography, “A Pathway Under the Gaze of Mary,” Father Luis Kondor visited her on Feb. 10, 1999 to tell her that a miracle had been approved, opening the door for the beatification of Francisco and Jacinta. The Pope was scheduled to go on pilgrimage to the Holy Land in 2000 and nothing more. But the unexpected happened. When the beatification was scheduled to be celebrated in Rome in April, the Pope decided to make an exception to his program and return to Fatima. Sister Lucia, then 92, was overjoyed and wrote tenderly of her cousins:

“The two little shepherds, Francisco and Jacinta Marto, were two Angels who passed through the land without a spot of dust from the roads, thanks to the designs of God and the maternal protection of Our Lady. How good it is to let ourselves be driven in the arms of the Father and Mother in Heaven!”

With this news, Sister Lucia had a new energy about her. She had collaborated with the Holy Father, providing her writings, testimonies and evidence for this, and had hoped to see her cousins raised to the altars before her own departure from life.

Francisco died on April 4, 1919, of the Spanish flu that swept through Europe at the time, one day after receiving his First Communion. Jacinta, who also concocted the flu, died alone at a hospital in Lisbon on Feb. 20, 1920, after suffering greatly from pneumonia, tuberculosis and an open abscess on her side. Before she died, the Blessed Mother appeared to her and told her that many souls had been saved because of her extended sufferings.

The cause for Francisco and Jacinta Marto changed the belief that children did not have the ability to practice Christian heroic virtue like adults, according to Cardinal Jose Saraiva Martins, Prefect Emeritus of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints. He told Catholic News Agency, one of the most obvious moments in which virtue was apparent for him was when the three shepherd children were arrested and intimidated by their mayor, Artur Oliveira Santos, on August 13, 1917:

Instead of caving to the pressure, the children said: “you can do whatever you want, but we cannot tell a lie. Do whatever you want to us, burn us with oil, but we cannot tell a lie.”

“This was the virtue of these children,” Cardinal Martins said, noting that to accept death rather than tell a lie is “more heroic than many adults.”

“There’s a lot to say on the heroicness of children,” he said, adding that “because of this I brought their cause forward.” ( April 20, 2017, CNA  It’s official: Pope Francis to canonize Fatima visionaries during May visit)

Servants of God, Francisco and Jacinta, pray for us!



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  1. Do not be mislead about the “Sister Lucia” mentioned here.She was an imposter.Shocking as this may seem its not the first time the Vatican used imposters.They did it with a pope.Google it and see for yourself. There is a website which points out the strong differences in features of the real Lucia and the imposter.These changes are not due to age or false teeth or anything like that.They would only be possible if the real Lucia got plastic surgery. Its likely she was murdered because she wanted the 3rd secret revealed.An imposter would be easy to control, made to say whatever the Vatican wanted.

    • Sister Lucia would be very saddened by this comment. She was very real to the Carmelite Sisters in Coimbra who lived with her for 57 years and who were with her on the day she died. That beautiful little shepherd girl fulfilled all that Our Lady had asked of her, spreading devotion to her Immaculate Heart and taking refuge in that Immaculate Heart, which lead her to God.

  2. write your comment here.
    Am very much impressed by the Pope’s decision to canonize my heroes. Saints Francesco and Jacinta, pray for us. Amen

  3. On May 13, it will be our 45 wedding anniversary. We were married May 13, 1972. Dale and I hope for a blessed healthy year. So remember us on this special day.
    Thank You and God Bless.

  4. What a glorious day in heaven and on earth this will when Pope Francis canonizes these two first apostles of Our Lady of Fatima. Glory! Glory to God most high and to His Son, Jesus Christ, together with the Holy Spirit in union with the white lady of peace. I could not be any more happier. Thank you, Jesus for inviting me through your mother to return to the church after a 21-year absence. May I serve you faithfully through our Lady of Fatima to the end of my days.

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