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Finding Fatima Through The Lord of the Rings: Part 2 – Through the Fires

As I established in the first part of this series, Catholic author J.R.R. Tolkien discouraged his audience from reading The Lord of the Rings as an allegory. This doesn’t mean that similarities between his fantasy and Catholicism shouldn’t be made, though. In fact, doing so only serves to strengthen our understanding of our Faith.

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Man’s Search for Peace

There is much news today that point to the rumblings of war. Pope Francis noted two years ago that we are living through a “third World War,” one that is being fought piecemeal, referring to the Russian/Ukraine conflict. Since Oct. 7, 2023 – the feast of Our Lady of the Rosary – we have watched the destruction unfold in the Israel/Gaza conflict, and the ideological divide unfold in this country, threatening civil peace here. The upcoming election looms large, and both sides of the political spectrum threaten that the other side will destroy democracy in this country. Anxiety levels are at an all-time high.

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Direction of a Just Nation

Liberty and freedom in a disordered world are often misunderstood. The American experiment has been one of great accomplishments and great dichotomies. The underlying foundation of our national identity has been self-determination. Detractors will argue that the words in the Declaration of Independence “that all men are created equal” falls short when we acknowledge that slavery was allowed in several states. The practice, in fact, pre-dated the 1776 Revolution and much blood was shed correcting this injustice.  A truly just nation corrects itself.

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Mary Calls Us To Deep and Abiding Prayer

Prayer is the mainstay of the Christian and Catholic life and so it isn’t surprising to see how, once the Fatima children had experienced the awesomeness and power of the angel of Fatima and the beauty and goodness of Our Lady, they increasingly devoted their lives to prayer.

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A Smaller, More Spiritual Church is Emerging

As we honor the feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and feast of the Immaculate Heart of Mary Friday and Saturday, I am heartened by the great mission given to Lucia dos Santos at Fatima in 1917, to establish devotion to the Immaculate Heart throughout the world, and that Jesus desired this devotion to be placed next to devotion to His Sacred Heart.

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First Saturday and the Spiritual Motherhood of Mary

Many of you have probably heard about the movement for a fifth Marian Dogma, specifically to declare the Blessed Virgin Mary as “Co-Redemptrix, Mediatrix, and Advocate,” and you wonder how this movement aligns with the message of Our Lady of Fatima.  We know that Sister Lucia never recorded Our Lady at Fatima ever saying anything about a fifth Marian dogma, but this does not mean there are not many significant parallels to the Fatima message.  Many of you might be surprised to hear that the movement for a fifth Marian dogma actually pre-dates the supernatural events at Fatima.

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Anything But “Ordinary” Time

Pentecost Sunday, the birthday of the Church, marks the end of the Easter season. Leading up to this day we completed the Novena to the Holy Spirit which began on Ascension Thursday; “Come Holy Spirit fill the hearts of Thy faithful and enkindle in them the fire of Thy Love.” Although many dioceses transferred the feast to the following Sunday, most of us began the nine-day prayer on the traditional day. This was a great preparation for the mission ratified when the Holy Spirit came upon Our Lady and the Apostles. It is the time when the Holy Spirit comes upon us and fills us with the gifts needed to carry on our mission as Catholics. On Pentecost the Church was born.

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Our Blessed Mother Joins the Eucharistic Pilgrimage

To highlight a strong Marian aspect of the National Eucharistic Revival during the National Eucharistic Pilgrimage, the World Apostolate of Fatima, USA is holding a “Eucharistic Revival Statue Tour” that will travel from the East Coast to the National Eucharistic Congress in Indianapolis, arriving on July 16.

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Persevere Like the Early Christians

During this glorious Easter season, it is important to ponder the fruits of the Redemption, which often escape the eye. What became of the many who crossed paths with Jesus and came to understand the meaning of the events they participated in, either as followers or as those who brought about His death?  Some witnessed His works from a distance but knew the truth was at hand. Even those guilty of the atrocities inflicted upon Him were among the first recipients of the great gift of redemption. This was a message preached during the years of His ministry: His mercy is beyond description to those who seek it through repentance.

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