Grace helps us accomplish our part of the Cross

Lent with Lucia – Holy Week

“We all have to carry that part of the cross of Christ which falls to us in the work of Redemption,
because the cross weighs on account of sin, or rather, sin brings with it the weight of the cross.”

Lucia shares a charming little insight in her book “Calls” about the question Our Lady posed at the first apparition: “Are you willing to offer yourselves to God and bear all the sufferings He wills to send you as an act of reparation for the sins by which He is offended and of supplication for the conversion of sinners?” She enthusiastically answered, “Yes, we are willing!”

She candidly states: At the time, this reply was given spontaneously and in ignorance, because I had not the remotest idea what it really meant, nor what its full implications were. But I never regretted it; on the contrary I renew it every day, asking God for the grace and strength that I need to keep it faithfully until the end.

The adult Lucia sharing the realities of her as a 10-year-old girl, mesmerized by the beautiful woman made of light and unable to say no to her, is a refreshing look at the human experience in an incredibly supernatural moment. Mary, too, may not have fully understood what the angel Gabriel was asking of her when she said “yes.”

But, as Lucia says, she constantly renewed her “yes” throughout her life. Her biography, “A Pathway Under the Gaze of Mary” attests to this. It became such a habit of hers to embrace all the little sufferings in her daily life, that even the heavy burdens, which seemed to frustrate the very plans of God, were accepted calmly with grace. This is how she was able to accept and bear the delay of the consecration of Russia and surrender it to God’s providence:

“I am sorry it has not already been done. However, it is the same God who requested it, who has permitted this,” she wrote to her spiritual director, Father Goncalves.

The everyday self-denial that Our Lady asked us to offer up comes to everyone, Lucia says, even those who do not possess the gift of faith. They, too, are confronted by the need to make sacrifices, because the whole of humanity is marked by the sign of the redeeming cross of Christ, even when they are not aware of it, or do not wish to take advantage of it. We all have to carry that part of the cross of Christ which falls to us in the work of Redemption, because the cross weighs on account of sin, or rather, sin brings with it the weight of the cross….There is need for sacrifice, accepted and offered to God with Christ for our own sins and for those of our brothers and sisters. It is in this sense that the Message asks us all “Are you willing…”

Lucia reminds us, however, that Mary didn’t ask us to bear all our sufferings alone. With our fragile natures, weakened by sin, the constant, generous and meritorious bearing of self-sacrifice is not possible without the special help of God. This is why Our Lady replied to the children’s humble little “yes” with a promise of the help of grace: “Then you are going to have much to suffer, but the grace of God will be your comfort.”

Lucia renewed her “yes” every day, but she also cooperated with the grace of God in order to accomplish it. That is how we, too, can respond to the message of Fatima. It’s not for us to try to accomplish it on our own.

Have a blessed Holy Week. May the grace of God accompany you.

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4 Comments
  1. Thank you for giving us all this beautiful Fatima information through The Blue Army. I will remember you in prayer and ask for prayers for myself and family.
    Eileen Scruggs
    cookietobey@gmail.com

  2. Beautiful article: “Then you are going to have much to suffer, but the grace of God will be your comfort.” Thank you.

  3. Your quoted statement of Lucia to Fr. Goncalves about the consecration of Russia left me with the impression that this has not been accomplished – when I know that it has. I believe it was St. John Paul 11 ‘s time when all of the world’s bishops were called for this reason. Afterward, Lucia said that God had accepted this. I may be wrong, but this is the way that I remember this to have happened. thank you Respectfully, J. C. Soldano, OCDS

    • Sorry for the confusion on this subject of the consecration of Russia. You are correct. The article meant to convey that Sister Lucia had to bear its long delay – 55 years until Pope St. John Paul II made the consecration that was accepted by God.

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