Is Anybody There?

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit,' says Yahweh Sabaoth" Zach 4:6 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Dio di Signore, nella Sua volontà è nostra pace!" . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety." Ben Franklin 1759

Thursday, May 13, 2010

The 13th Day

Today is the feast of Our Lady of Fatima. This feast commemorates the appearances of the Blessed Virgin Mary to 3 children near Fatima Portugal. To commemorate the 10th Anniversary of the Beatification of Jacinta and Francisco, young shepherds of Fátima, Papa Benedetto is making an Apostolic Journey to Portugal.
Last year a new movie came out about the events at Fatima. It was entitled The 13th Day. The movie gets its name from the fact that Mary 1st appeared to the children on this date in 1917 & every 13th of the month, except August, until October of 1917. The reason August was the exception was due to the fact that the provincial administrator had put them in jail.
The film opens with an older Lúcia dos Santos writing her memoirs about the events. We then flash back to 1917 & meet the 3 seers, Lúcia, & her cousins Jacinta & Francisco Marto. The film goes on to tell what happens to them over the next 6 months.
Since the movie is only 85 minutes long it obviously cannot tell everything. But it does give us a good idea of what the children were like as well as the trials & tribulations they went through. The movie also uses a very interesting tecnique. It is filmed in black & white. Color is used only for the appearances of Mary as well as the miracle of the sun at the end. The special effects do an excellent job of conveying the visions of the 3 Secrets as well.
As I said, the movie couldn't include everything. But there is 1 aspect of the final apparition & the miracle of the sun that is left out that I feel should have been left in. I say this because you rarely hear about it due to the focus on the spectacular miracle. & that is the fact that before the miracle occurred St. Joseph appeared to all 3 children holding Jesus. He was on 1 side of the sun & Mary on the other. Jesus & San Giueseppe blessed the world. Mary then appeared as the sorrowful mother to Lúcia & then as Our Lady of Mount Carmel.
That personal desire aside, I highly recommend the movie. Ignatius Press has released the movie on DVD in the Region 1 format for the USA & Canada. (,) The DVD contains several bonuses. 1 of those is a film featuring Fr. Andrew Apostoli titled "Fatima: Message of Hope for Today". In it he goes into some details that were omitted from the movie as well as how the message is just as important today as it was nearly 100 years ago. In addition the DVD comes with a Rosary, a pamphlet on how to pray the Rosary & a prayer card. A 24 page booklet is also included. The booklet contains more on the apparitions. It also contains an article written by Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen on Fatima & Islam.
The message of Fatima, the call to repentance, prayer & penance, is very much needed today. We see the widespread acceptance & promotion of abortion, we see the breakdown of family & morality, we see evil running rampant. At Fatima through Mary, God gave us the way to battle this. Yes, this is a private revelation. & thus the Catholic Church does not require us to believe in it. But the Church has discerned the message & given judgment that the apparition is worthy of belief. Prudence thus would call on us to not lightly disregard the message. As I already pointed out, the basic message is the same message the Catholic Church has proclaimed for 2000 years, repentance from your sins, turning to Jesus for salvation & forgiveness, praying & interceding. The DVD of this movie is an excellent evangelical tool to help bring people to Jesus.
Here is the trailer:



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