Our Lady of Fatima Garden
Welcome to Our Lady of Fátima Garden in Charles Town, West Virginia. We hope that your visit to this is filled with peace, inspiring you to learn more about the Fátima apparitions and, more importantly, what Our Lady and Jesus ask of us. It is important to note that at each apparition, Our Lady told the children that she wanted them and each of us to pray the rosary daily.
The Our Lady of Fátima Garden-Shrine was designed to be an all-encompassing memorial to the one hundredth anniversary of the Apparitions of Our Lady to the three children of Fátima, Portugal. It was designed for all ages as a place of silent worship and communal prayer as well as a means of iconography to teach the important message of Fátima.
Our intention was to create the opportunity to recite the prayer (The Rosary) Our Lady gave to the children in a Rosary Walk. The quatrefoil cruciform space displays all of the Mysteries of the Rosary and the Magnificent Artwork of Fátima. The multicolored stone pavers replicate a rosary (no excuses if you forgot your own rosary…you can recite just by walking on the given stones.
Upon entering the Shrine, you will notice the three children in the center of the Shrine. Jacinta, Francisco, and Lucia are kneeling in awe before Our Lady. They are positioned such (with space between them) to invite all visitors to join them in prayer and kneel next to them to pray and offer sacrifice as the children did 100 years ago. Notice the expression of the children, the rapture and shock as they listen intently to what Our Lady speaks to them.
Before them stands the larger-than-life statue of Our Lady floating upon a holm oak tree based on the children’s descriptions of the apparitions. The placement allows space for outdoor Masses within the Shrine walls. The beautiful statue of Our Lady encourages contemplative prayer and devotion to her son. The white Carrara marble used for all of the hand-carved statues was quarried in the Tuscan region of Italy in a town called Pietrasanta (Holy Land). Famous sculptor Michelangelo Buonarroti exclusively used these same mountains to quarry marble for all of his sculptures.
Each quadrant of the quatrefoil holds one of the four mysteries (Joyful, Luminous, Sorrowful, and Glorious) of the Life of Christ. Pilgrims are invited to meditate on the images of the mysteries to enhance their prayer experience. The images were created using the same Azulejos Blue tile painted and fire-kilned in the traditional Portuguese way.
The statues on either side of Our Lady are of the Angel of Peace and St. Pope John Paul II. The Angel first appeared to the children a year before the Marian apparitions to prepare them and give them spiritual communion. The Angel is shown with the Chalice and Host offering the Sacred Body and Blood of Christ. The Angel is “in motion” floating just as the same way as the children described.
The statue of St. Pope John Paul II is shown holding the bullet and giving thanks to Our Lady for saving his life. It was on May 13 (Feast Day of Our Lady of Fátima) when a professional would-be assassin shot and attempted to kill St. Pope John Paul II but failed in his mission. St. Pope John Paul II is holding the bullet and offering it to Our Lady in thanksgiving for saving his life. The same bullet that St. Pope John Paul II was shot with is in the underside top of the crown of Our Lady of Fátima (note the crown of Our Lady has the same bullet carved in marble in her crown too).
The brick walls (six panels total) will soon have bronze plaques depicting and commemorating the six apparitions of Our Lady to the children. Each will have a bronze photo-authentic picture showing the people and/or the countryside at the time of each apparition along with the special message Our Lady gave to the children each time she appeared to them.
This garden is made possible by the Alfred and Barbara Braddock Foundation, originally of North Bergen, NJ and inspired by Our Lady of the Rosary. Their sons, Francis and Anthony (Tony) J. Braddock, and with the help of their cousins, Joseph and Bertha Braddock, have brought this garden to fruition for Our Lady and the world. This garden is dedicated to the Braddock, Romano, and Navarroli families.
The shrine was dedicated on October 14, 2017. The garden was designed by St. Jude Liturgical Studios of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and Design Concepts of Winchester, Virginia. Its rich design uniquely presents a world-class Garden to Our Lady.
Servant of God Lucia de Jesus dos Santos
(28 March, 1907 – 13 February, 2005)
Lucia was born in Aljustrel, a village in the parish of Fátima, Portugal, on March 28, 1907. Lucia was the youngest of the Santos’ seven children. Her parents were Antonio and Maria Rosa dos Santos. She was baptized on March 30, 1907, and at age 6 she received her First Holy Communion. When Lucia was about 8 years old, she was given the task of tending the family’s sheep. Her cousins, Jacinta and Franciso Marto, often accompanied her.
It was while the three shepherds were tending the sheep that the Angel of Peace visited the children three times to prepare them for their mission and for the visits of Our Blessed Mother. Lucia was 10 years old when, on May 13, 1917, while tending the sheep in the Cova de Iria, the Blessed Virgin Mary appeared to the children. The apparitions would continue monthly on the 13th of the month until October 1917 (except for August, when the children were taken by the mayor). At each apparition, Our Blessed Mother encouraged the children to pray the rosary and to make sacrifices. She also communicated certain prophecies of the future.
In the second apparition, June 13, Lucia asked Our Blessed Mother, “Will you take us to heaven?” She responded, “Yes, I shall take Jacinta and Francisco soon, but you will remain a little longer, since Jesus wishes you to make me known and loved on earth. He wishes also for you to establish devotion in the world to my Immaculate Heart.” While Jacinta and Francisco died shortly after the apparitions, as Our Blessed Mother had predicted, Lucia remained to fulfill her mission. She wrote two books, Memoirs, recounting the events of Fátima in her own words, and Calls from the Message of Fátima, giving answers to the many questions about living the message of Fátima.
At age 14, Lucia was admitted as a boarder to the school of the Sisters of St. Dorothy in Vilar, near Oporto in the north of Portugal. On Oct. 24, 1925, she entered the Institute of the Sisters of St. Dorothy as a postulant in the convent in Tuy, Spain, not far from the Portuguese border. During these years she would continue to receive private revelations explanatory of the message of Fátima. She made her first vows on Oct. 3, 1928, and her perpetual vows on Oct. 3, 1934, receiving the name Sister Mary of the Sorrowful Mother. In 1946, seeking a more contemplative life, Lucia entered the Carmelite convent of St. Teresa in Coimbra, Portugal where she made her profession as a Discalced Carmelite on May 31, 1949. Lucia took the name Sister Maria Lucia of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart.
She received visions and messages from both Mary and Jesus on several more occasions throughout her life, including the visions in 1925 that led to the Five First Saturday devotions, which include saying the rosary, receiving communion and confession, and meditation during the first Saturday of five consecutive months.
In 1967, Sister Maria Lucia traveled to Fátima to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the apparitions, presided over by Pope Paul VI. She went again in 1982, when Pope John Paul II came to the Shrine on May 13 that year to give thanks for the saving of his life during the assassination attempt of May 13 1981, and again when the Pope came there in 1991, and finally in 2000, at the beatification of Jacinta and Francisco.
On February 13, 2005, Sr. Maria Lucia succumbed to the infirmities of old age. Her funeral Mass at the Cathedral of Coimbra was presided over by the city’s bishop, Most Reverend Antonio Cleto. Sister Maria Lucia was buried at the Carmelite convent in Coimbra. Abiding by her wishes to be buried at the convent for a year before being removed to Fátima, Sister Maria Lucia’s coffin was moved in February 2006 and is now buried in the Basilica of Fátima next to the sepulchre of Sister Lucia’s cousins Saint Jacinta and Saint Francisco Marto.
On February 13, 2017, Sister Maria Lúcia was accorded the title Servant of God, as the first major step toward her canonization.
(11 June 1908 - 4 April 1919)
Francisco was born on June 11, 1908, the sixth of seven children of Manuel and Olimpia Marto, the older brother of Jacinta and cousin to Lucia. He was a handsome boy, with light hair and dark eyes. He loved games and other children, yet without the spirit of competition. He would not complain when treated unfairly. He was a peacemaker, but courageous, had a love for nature, and animals in particular. He played with lizards and snakes, and would bring them home, to his mother’s dismay. Once he gave a penny, all the money he had, to a friend for a captured bird, only to set the bird free. He played a reed pipe, to which Lucia and his sister Jacinta would sing and dance.
Francisco never heard Our Lady speak, although he saw her and felt her presence. After the first apparition, Lucia conveyed Our Lady’s message to him that he would go to heaven if he prayed many Rosaries. After Our Lady’s appeal to the children to offer themselves to God and submit to suffering in reparation for sins, Francisco made it clear that he wanted to suffer as Our Lady requested. He resisted the attempts of the parish priest to make him deny what had happened. He deprived himself of food and drink for days at a time during hot weather and wore a thick rope round his waist. On one occasion when he went missing and was found praying behind a rock, Lucia asked him what he was doing. “I was thinking of God Who is so sad because of all the sins: if only I could comfort Him!”
Francisco showed his courage when the Mayor of the district tried to bully them into admitting they lied, threatened to boil them in oil if they withheld the Lady’s “Secret” and jailed them to keep them from their appointment with Our Lady on the day of the fourth apparition. While in jail, the children knelt down to say the Rosary together. Other inmates joined them, one of whom kept his hat on. “When you pray,” Francisco admonished him, “you should take your hat off.” The man threw it down and Francisco put it on a bench. Threatened with being boiled alive, Jacinta was taken away first. Francisco said a Hail Mary for her so she wouldn’t be frightened.
After the apparitions ended, Francisco was enrolled in school but he preferred to spend time praying to the “Hidden Jesus” in the Tabernacle. He prayed to console God and honor the Heart of His Mother, gradually progressing along the path of sanctity. When asked what he wanted to be when he grew up, Francisco answered, “I don’t want to be anything. I want to die and go to heaven.”
In August 1918, Francisco contracted influenza. In April of 1919, knowing his time was short, Francisco asked to receive the Hidden Jesus for the first time in Holy Communion. A priest heard Francisco’s confession on the evening of April 2nd and brought Holy Communion to him the next morning. Unable to sit up, he received his first and last Communion lying down. Opening his eyes, he asked: “When will you bring me the Hidden Jesus again?” Lucia remained with him all day. During the night he called to his mother: “Look at that lovely light by the door.” And then, “Now I can’t see it anymore.”
On April 4th, at 10:00 in the morning, his face lit up, he smiled, and then died without any effort. Francisco was 10 years old. On May 13, 1989, Pope John Paul II approved the decree on the Heroic Virtues of the two Servants of God, Francisco and Jacinta, granting each of them the title of “Venerable”. Francisco was beatified along with his sister Jacinta on May 13, 2000, at the Basilica of Our Lady of the Rosary, Portugal, by Pope John Paul II. Saint Francisco Marto was canonized on May 13, 2017, at the Basilica of Our Lady of the Rosary, Fátima, Portugal, by Pope Francis.
(11 March 1910 - 20 February 1920)
Jacinta was born on March 11, 1910, the younger sister of Francisco and cousin to Lucia. Two years younger than Francisco, Jacinta was a charming, pretty and energetic girl. She took a special delight in flowers; at a First Communion, she was among the little “angels” spreading petals before the Blessed Sacrament. She had a remarkable love for Our Lord, and at the age of five she melted in tears on hearing the account of His Passion, vowing that she would never sin or offend Him anymore.
She had many friends, but mostly she loved her cousin Lucia. When Lucia turned ten, she was sent by her parents to pasture their sheep. Jacinta moped about until her mother allowed her and Francisco to accompany Lucia in the pasture. Her days were playful and happy, delighting with her brother and cousin. The children said the Rosary every day, but to make more time for play, they shortened it to the words “Our Father” at the beginning of each decade, followed by “Hail Mary” ten times.
Jacinta saw Our Lady during all six apparitions, though she did not always hear what was being said. During the first apparition in May, 1917, Jacinta stayed in the background. After the apparition, Lucia insisted that they tell no one what they had seen. Jacinta promised that she wouldn’t say a word, but later, when her parents returned home that evening she related the whole story to her family. Her mother laughed but her father believed her. Word spread quickly throughout the village, and Jacinta got the blame for breaking her promise. The news was received with skepticism by many, with mockery by some, and with anger by Lucia’s mother.
On August 13th, the mayor of the town took the children. The authorities interrogated the children, threatened to boil the children in oil, and placed them in jail. Jacinta cried because she would never see her mother again, and she was very afraid. The authorities released the children unharmed. On Sunday, August 19th, the children witnessed their fourth apparition.
Jacinta was changed by the visitations of Our Blessed Mother. Previously talkative, she became quiet and withdrawn. Jacinta was deeply affected by the terrifying vision of hell at the third apparition. She became deeply convinced of the need to save sinners through penance and sacrifice as Our Blessed Mother had asked the children to do. To rescue sinners from hell, Jacinta, Francisco and Lucia sacrificed by giving up their lunches, refusing to drink in the heat of the day, and wearing a knotted rope around their waists. Following the miracle of the sun, Jacinta complied with many requests for her intercession. On one occasion she seems to have bi-located, in order to help a wayward youth find his way home. Lost in a stormy wood, he had knelt and prayed, and Jacinta appeared and took him by the hand, while she was at home praying for him. Lucia relates in her memoirs how her little cousin said she never tired of telling Our Lord and Our Lady how much she loved them. “I have a fire in my chest but it doesn’t burn me.”
In October of 1918, Jacinta came down with influenza and was moved to a hospital a few miles away. Because the Blessed Mother told her that she would go to two hospitals, not to be cured, but to suffer for the love of God and reparation for sinners, Jacinta was at peace. She went on to develop pneumonia and then tuberculosis. An abscess in her side caused her great agony. She was taken to the hospital in Vila Nova de Ourem. On February 2, 1920, Jacinta was admitted to the Estefania hospital where she underwent surgery, and the daily dressing of the wound caused her agony. On February 20, 1920, she received the Last Rites. A priest heard her confession and promised to bring her Holy Communion the next morning, but Jacinta died peacefully that night, alone. She was nine years old.
Visitors who saw Jacinta in her open coffin exclaimed that she seemed to be alive, with the loveliest color. The unpleasant odor due to her illness was replaced by “a fragrance as of the most delicious flowers.” Jacinta’s coffin was opened on September 12, 1935, in preparation of its move to a tomb especially built at the Basilica at Fátima, and her body was seen to be perfectly incorrupt. Her relics and those of Francisco now lie in the Basilica at Fátima.
On May 13, 1989, Pope John Paul II approved the decree on the Heroic Virtues of the two Servants of God, Francisco and Jacinta, granting each of them the title of “Venerable”. Jacinta was beatified along with her brother, Francisco on May 13, 2000, at the Basilica of Our Lady of the Rosary, Fátima, Portugal, by Pope John Paul II. Saint Jacinta Marto was canonized on May 13, 2017, at the Basilica of Our Lady of the Rosary, Fátima, Portugal by Pope Francis.
Angel of Peace
The story of Our Lady of Fátima began prior to Our Blessed Mother’s apparitions. In 1915 the children viewed a vision of a transparent individual off in the distance above the tree line. This was the beginning of the apparitions of the Angel of Peace, who in 1916 appeared three times to Lucia dos Santos, age 9, and her cousins, Francisco and Jacinta Marto, ages 8 and 6 respectively. The angel was described as the form of a young man, transparent and brighter than crystal, pierced by the rays of the sunlight whiter than snow. The angel spoke to the children and told them, “Do not be afraid. I am the Angel of Peace. Pray with me.” He knelt on the ground, bowed very low with his forehead to the ground and said, “My God, I believe, I adore, I hope and I love You. I ask pardon of You for those who do not believe, do not adore, do not hope and do not love You.” Then he rose and said: “Pray this way. The Hearts of Jesus and Mary are attentive to the voice of your supplications.”
The second apparition occurred in the summer, when the children were playing near the well of Lucia’s house. The Angel said to them: “What are you doing? Pray! Pray a great deal. The Hearts of Jesus and Mary have merciful designs on you. Offer prayers and sacrifices continually to the Most High.” The children asked: “How must we sacrifice ourselves?” The angel said: “Make everything you do a sacrifice, and offer it as an act of reparation for the sins by which God is offended, and as a petition for the conversion of sinners. By this you will bring peace to your country. I’m its Guardian Angel, the Angel of Portugal. Above all, accept and bear with submission all the suffering the Lord will send you.” From that moment, they began to offer to the Lord everything that offended Him, without trying to find any other ways of mortification or penance other than passing hour after hour, bowed to the ground, repeating the prayer that the angel had taught them.
The third apparition occurred in autumn at Cabeco. The children started prayers when they saw the angel, which had in his hand a chalice over which hung a Host, from which fell in the chalice some drops of Blood. He knelt and repeated three times with the children: “Most Holy Trinity – Father, Son, and Holy Spirit – I adore Thee profoundly. I offer Thee the most precious Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Jesus Christ, present in all the tabernacles in the world, in reparation for all the outrages, sacrileges and indifferences whereby He is offended. And through the infinite merits of His Most Sacred Heart and the Immaculate Heart of Mary, I beg of Thee the conversion of poor sinners.” Then he rose, took the Host, and gave it to Lucia, while the contents of the chalice he gave to Jacinta and Francisco, and said: “Take the Body and the Blood of Jesus Christ horribly outraged by thankless men. Recover their sins and comfort your God.”
In the third apparition, the Angel does not identify himself but we understand that he is the Archangel Michael. There is reason to believe that the chalice and Host were taken by the Archangel from the tabernacle of the church of St. Michael in Juncal, about twenty miles from Fátima. Fr. Luis da Costa, the parish priest there at the time, had always left a Host in the tabernacle, together with his chalice. He later revealed that at the time of the apparition, the Host had disappeared from the tabernacle and the chalice had been moved. Later Fr. da Costa found a Drop of Blood on the cloth at the bottom of the tabernacle. He alone had the tabernacle key. After wondering about this, his concern was put to rest when he learned of the third apparition of the Angel who brought the Blessed Sacrament and the chalice to the Fátima children.
Angel’s Prayers of Fátima
My God, I believe, I adore, I trust and I love Thee! I beg pardon for those who do not believe, do not adore, do not trust and do not love Thee.
O Most Holy Trinity, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, I adore Thee profoundly. I offer Thee the most precious Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Jesus Christ, present in all the tabernacles of the world, in reparation for the outrages, sacrileges and indifference by which He is offended. By the infinite merits of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary, I beg the conversion of poor sinners.
By the infinite merits of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary, I beg the conversion of poor sinners.
Most Holy Trinity, I adore Thee! My God, my God, I love Thee in the Most Blessed Sacrament!
O my Jesus, forgive us our sins, save us from the fires of hell. Lead all souls to Heaven, especially those in most need of Thy mercy.
Our Lady of the Rosary of Fátima is the name given to Our Blessed Mother when she appeared to the three shepherd children, Lucia, Francisco and Jacinta in Fátima, Portugal in 1917. The children had been prepared by the Angel of Peace and had continued to pray and offer sacrifices to God. While pasturing their sheep in the Cova da Ira, the Blessed Mother appeared to the children on May 13, 1917 for the first time. Our Blessed Mother would appear to the children six times in 1917. At each apparition Our Blessed Mother asks the children to pray the rosary daily for peace in the world. During her last appearance on October 13, 1917, she identifies herself as Our Lady of the Rosary.
On October 13, 1930, the bishop of Leiria-Fátima, José Alves Correia da Silva, declared the apparitions of Fátima worthy of credibility and allowed public devotion to the Virgin under the title of Our Lady of the Rosary of Fátima.
The first apparition took place in the Cova da Iria on May 13, 1917. Our Lady appeared to the three children, asking them to come to this spot for the next six months on the thirteenth day of each month at the same hour. Our Lady promised to tell them later “who I am and what I want.” Our Lady also asked them, “Do you wish to offer yourselves to God to endure all the sufferings that He may be pleased to send you, as both an act of reparation for the sins with which He is offended and as an act of supplication for the conversion of sinners?” Lucia answered, “Yes, we do.” Our Lady answered “Well, then, you will have much to suffer. But the grace of God will be your comfort.”
The second apparition took place in the Cova da Iria on June 13, 1917 (the Feast of St. Anthony of Padua). The news of the first apparition had spread to surrounding areas, and about 50 people were present. Our Lady appeared to the three children again, asking them to come there again on the thirteenth of the next month, pray the Rosary daily, and to learn to read. She told them she would tell them later what she wanted. Lucia asked her if Our Lady would take them to Heaven. Our Lady answered that she would be taking Francisco and Jacinta soon, but that Lucia would remain for some time. Jesus wished to use her in order to make Our Lady known and loved. He wanted to establish a devotion to Our Lady’s Immaculate Heart in the world. Our Lady told her “I promise salvation to those who embrace it, and these souls will be beloved of God like flowers arranged by me to adorn His throne.”
The third apparition took place in the Cova da Iria on July 13, 1917. Word had spread throughout Portugal, and a crowd of about 4,000 people were present. Our Lady appeared to the three children again, asking them to come there again on the thirteenth of the next month and to continue to pray the Rosary daily, in order to obtain peace for the world and the end of the war. Lucia asked her to tell them who she was and to perform a miracle so everyone would believe that Our Lady appears to them. Our Lady told them to continue coming every month and that in October she would tell them who she is, what she wants, and would perform a miracle that everyone would see so as to believe.
Our Lady then confided a secret to the children with three parts. Part one: the vision of hell. The children saw hell, where the souls of poor sinners go. Part two: devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Our Lady warned of another great war and the evils of Communism. To save the souls of poor sinners, she said God wanted to establish a devotion to her Immaculate Heart in the world. She also asked for the consecration of Russia to her Immaculate Heart and the Communion of reparation on the first Saturdays. Part three: the century of martyrs. The third part was a prophetic vision without words and dealt with the need for penance and the sufferings of the Church.
On August 13, the day the fourth apparition was to take place, the mayor of Vila Nova de Ourém abducted the children in an attempt to force them to reveal the secrets that had been revealed to them by Our Lady. The children were released and returned home a few days later. The fourth apparition took place in Valinhos on August 19, 1917. Our Lady appeared to the three children again, asking them to come there again on the thirteenth of each month and to continue to pray the Rosary every day. She told them that on the last month, she would perform a miracle for all to believe. There were thousands of impartial observers.**
**Fátima, The Great Sign, Francis Johnston, pg 46.
The fifth apparition took place in the Cova da Iria on September 13, 1917. Word of the children’s imprisonment had spread, and a crowd of about 25,000 people were present. Our Lady appeared to the three children again, asking them, “Continue to pray the Rosary in order to obtain the end of the war!” Our Lady also told the children, “In October, Our Lord will come, as well as Our Lady of Dolors (sorrows) and Our Lady of Mount Carmel. St. Joseph will appear with the Child Jesus to bless the world.” She also promised them a miracle that would convince the people that Our Lady had been appearing in the Cova.
The sixth apparition took place in the Cova da Iria on October 13, 1917. The estimates of the crowd that day ranged from 40,000 to 80.000 people with another 25,000 watching from about 25 miles around. It had been raining for more than a day, and there was mud all around.
Our Lady told the children, “I want to tell you that a chapel is to be built here in my honor. I am the Lady of the Rosary. Continue always to pray the Rosary every day. The war is going to end, and the soldiers will soon return to their homes.”
After Our Lady had finished speaking with the children and was getting ready to leave, the Miracle of the Sun happened as described by Lucia. “Then, opening her hands, she made them reflect on the sun, and as she ascended, the reflection of her own light continued to be projected on the sun itself. Here… is the reason why I cried out to the people to look at the sun. My aim was not to call their attention to the sun, because I was not even aware of their presence. I was moved to do so under the guidance of an interior impulse.”
Karol Józef Wojtyla
Karol Józef Wojtyla was born in Wadowice, Poland, on May 18, 1920, the third of three children born to Karol Wojtyła and Emilia Kaczorowska. He was nine years old when he received his First Communion and eighteen when he received the Sacrament of Confirmation. Karol was ordained a Priest in Krakow on November 1, 1946. On July 4, 1958, Pope Pius XII appointed Father Wojtyła auxiliary bishop of Krakow. On January 13, 1964, Pope Paul VI appointed Bishop Wojtyła as Archbishop of Krakow and then on June 26, 1967, he was elevated to a Cardinal. On October 16, 1978, Cardinal Wojtyła was elected Pope, taking the name Pope John Paul II.
On May 13, 1981, in St. Peter’s Square, exactly 64 years after the first apparition of the Blessed Mother to the three shepherd children in Fatima, Portugal; Mehmet Ali Agca shot Pope John Paul II four times. The bullets hit Pope John Paul II, two of them lodging in his lower intestine, the others hitting his left hand and right arm. The bullet missed his central aorta by a few millimeters, saving his life. The Pope underwent five hours of emergency surgery at the hospital.
While he was recuperating at the hospital, Pope John Paul asked to see the Church’s documentation on Fatima and the Third Secret of Fatima. He was convinced that Our Lady of Fatima’s maternal hand had saved his life. Following a lengthy stay in the hospital, he forgave the attempted assassin. Believing he had received a great gift, he intensified his pastoral commitments with heroic generosity. Later that year, he had a mosaic of Our Blessed Mother- Mother of the Church, installed on St. Peter’s Square.
As a measure of his gratitude to Our Blessed Mother, Pope John Paul gave the bullet that was extracted from his abdomen to the Fatima Shrine. The bullet forms part of the crown of the statue of Our Lady of Fatima. On May 13, 1982, in Fatima, Pope John Paul II consecrated the world to Our Lady of Fatima. Pope John Paul II visited Fatima three times, on the first anniversary of the assassination attempt, May 13, 1982, on the 10th anniversary, May 13, 1991; and finally during the Great Jubilee of 2000, when he beatified the child visionaries, Jacinta and Francisco, on May 13th. They were canonized by Pope Francis on May 13, 2017. During Pope John Paul II’s 2000 visit to Fatima, the third part of the message Our Blessed Mother gave to the three children in 1917 was revealed. It was a description of the assassination attempt on Pope John Paul II.
Pope John Paul II died in the Apostolic Palace at 9:37 p.m. on Saturday, 2 April 2005, the vigil of Sunday in albis or Divine Mercy Sunday, which he had instituted. On April 8th, his solemn funeral was celebrated in Saint Peter’s Square and he was buried in the crypt of Saint Peter’s Basilica.
Pope John Paul II was beatified in Saint Peter’s Square on May 1, 2011 by Pope Benedict XVI.
Saint Pope John Paul II was canonized on April 27, 2014 (Divine Mercy Sunday) by Pope Francis.
Saint Pope John Paul II is pictured with Carmelite Sister Lucia dos Santos, the last of the three Fatima visionaries alive in 1991. Recent popes have had a special affection for Our Lady of Fatima, but no pope’s connection can match that of now Saint Pope John Paul II.