Plinio Correa de Oliveira
“Our Lady at Fatima: Prophecies of Tragedy or Hope?” (Antonio A. Borelli – John R. Spann, Third American edition, 1994)
The Timeliness of the Message of Fatima
The message of Fatima comes to the fore today—three quarters of a century after the famous apparitions of Our Lady in Portugal in 1917—with renewed interest, to the point that it was accorded extensive coverage not long ago (September 27, 1991) on the front page of The Wall Street Journal.
An impressive coincidence of two events that marked the century
What was it that gave the revelations of Fatima this unexpected vitality?
A nation that occupies a central place in today's global political scene was deeply involved in them.
The coincidence of two events—the revelations of Fatima and the Russian revolution—is very noticeable, as both occurred during the same year, 1917. Communism seized power in Russia exactly 25 days after Our Lady's last apparition at Fatima. A message transmitted to the three seers—the little shepherds Lúcia, Francisco, and Jacinta—and which remained secret until 1942, pointed to the "errors of Russia" as the focus of serious disturbances, which have truly been shaking the whole world for the greater part of the century. That same message predicts the eventual conversion of that nation.
Under these conditions, the spectacular fall of the Berlin Wall and the Iron Curtain on November 9, 1989, with the political upheavals that preceded and followed it in the countries of Eastern Europe, could not but be associated with the predictions of Fatima. Could not those events be signs that Our Lady is fulfilling Her promises?
The Wall Street Journal article points precisely to this.
It is impossible to make an all inclusive study of that fundamental point of the international political situation within the narrow confines of a foreword. We must nevertheless make at least a brief summary of it as we present a book containing the essentials of the Fatima message.
A reproach to the world, a threat of punishment, a promise of peace
What does the average reader derive from the Fatima message after giving sufficiently serious attention to it?
Such a reader draws from the message the extremely serious fact that Our Lady reproaches the world for certain sins and threatens it with definite punishments should Her requests not be heeded. The conditional character of the promises of Fatima appears thus perfectly configured. That is, Our Lady leaves humankind an escape from the coming chastisement through amendment of life.
Along these lines, the expiatory character of the requests made by Our Lady are outstanding: the Communion of Reparation of the first Saturdays of five consecutive months, followed by the consecration of Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. If these requests were to be fulfilled, Russia would be converted and would abandon its errors, and a basic factor of world disturbance would be deactivated. The world would enjoy peace again, the peace of Christ in the Reign of Mary.
The moral crisis in the West has done nothing but increase
We ask: Did the faults, the sins cease? Was the expiation made? Was the consecration of Russia performed according to the exact terms established by Our Lady?
We answer: To begin with the more evident element, the moral crisis in the West did nothing but increase rapidly. Fashions degenerated, approaching ever more generalized nudity. The dreadful instability of marriage, the acceptance of homosexuality as normal, the number of apostasies among the clergy and the ranks of religious orders of both sexes for reasons having much to do with the lack of regard for the vow of chastity, abortion, the co-education of boys and girls, sex-education in the schools, all of the methods of birth control, all are symptoms of the deterioration affecting ever wider sectors of Western society.
The atheistic sect of communism tried to construct a society without God
A society from which the idea of God has been virtually banished was constructed in the Eastern countries under the control of the atheistic communist sect. From the highest point of the State to the smallest details of each individual life, everything was organized in opposition to the Natural Law, as codified in the Ten Commandments of the Law of God. Communist legislation abolished private property, instituted the most complete egalitarianism, and practically extinguished the family, making marriage a matter of mere public registry that legally insignificant formalities can change at the good pleasure of the episodically joined couples.
Reform of morality, the great oversight
Thus, among so many reforms that everyone deems necessary—either in the West or in the East—no one pleads for a solution to that which most offended Our Lady, that is, the decline of morality, whether private or public, by restoration of the institution of the family, with the strengthening of the indissolubility and sacrality of marriage, of parental authority over the children; freeing children from the abusive intervention of the secular if not directly atheistic State, and so on and so forth.
The requests of Our Lady were not heeded in a fundamental point
Consequently, without entering into the controversy of whether or not the successive Papal consecrations of the world to the Immaculate Heart of Mary have fulfilled the conditions established by Our Lady for the conversion of Russia (the nation that must be specifically mentioned in the formula of consecration), any statement about the promises of Fatima being fulfilled would demand the greatest circumspection, considering that men have not corresponded to the requests of Our Lady in a fundamental point, that is, the amendment of life.
Perestroika, from hope to thorns
However, the fact is that the Gorbachevian promise of establishing perestroika in Russia produced—inside and outside that country—what may be one of history's greatest geopolitical earthquakes. Nations kept under the iron glove of Soviet communism without descrying the least hope of liberation, suddenly shook off that yoke and took their own destiny in hand. Germany, cut in two from top to bottom, reunited. How can we fail to view such encouraging transformations with hope?
After the first moments of optimism, however, realistic observers began to detect thorns on the stems of the roses. Seventy years of communism in Russia and almost half a century in the satellite or annexed nations devastated the institutions and generated an apathy in the peoples that shows no signs of a quick recovery. On the contrary, the analysts and the world media have begun to emphasize with ever more frequency the very serious possibility of migrations from those nations—speaking sometimes of tens of millions—of hungry people searching for means of survival in the West. In the face of this potential new "invasion of barbarians," the Western nations are concerned that if it reaches the foreseen proportions, it will produce unimaginable devastations. Beside the economic impoverishment, the mixing of such disparate ethnic groups will cause those nations to lose their identities. The West, which did not resist well the doctrines of communism, would see itself destroyed by an apparently a-ideological operation.
At this point, an unavoidable question poses itself: When Gorbachev decided on the fall of the Iron Curtain, was this not exactly the effect he had in mind? It is understandable that many Europeans have begun to long for the Iron Curtain, formerly viewed as the horror wall but now seeming to be a protective barrier...
Retreat or metamorphosis of communism?
The most careful minds always mistrusted perestroika, fearing it would contain a vile trick of communism in its belly. Today, public opinion in the West is slowly discovering that the true aim of perestroika was really obscure. Perhaps the day is not far off when the questionable authenticity of communism's retreat will reveal itself as nothing but a metamorphosis and that from the altered caterpillar the "pretty" butterfly of self-management will emerge, the self-management that all the theoreticians and supreme leaders of communism, from Marx and Engels to Gorbachev, always presented as the extreme and perfect version of communism, its quintessence. In the preamble of the Soviet constitution, this was stated in all its details. Communism, apparently overthrown, would have spread its errors over all the world.
In this, the prophecies of Fatima would be confirmed, for they warned: If men do not amend their lives, Russia will spread its errors throughout the world!
Clarity, vigilance, and courage
It is thus important, and very much so, to know the Message of Fatima in its authentic version, as it is found in the manuscripts of Sister Lúcia, of which the reader has a clear and objective synthesis in the present book.
The American Society for the Defense of Tradition, Family and Property offers it to the public with certainty that it will benefit those who would lucidly, vigilantly, and courageously face the prospective extraordinary events that may occur, thrusting humanity into perplexity and affliction.
For those who have faith, the words of Our Lady in Fatima will always resound in their ears: "In the end, my Immaculate Heart will triumph".