What connects the Muslim religion and Fatima? What is the miracle which proves the santity of Jasinta and Fransisco and what happened to the bullet of the John Paul II attack in 1981?
The phenomenon of the Fatima apparitions contains many symbolic images. Below are the ones that not many people know about.
1. Muslim princess Fatima
After the Muslim Moors invasion of the Iberian Penisula when finally Portugal won the decisive victory, a Christian knight captured Muslim princess named Fatima, as the Muhammad’s doughter. They fell in love and got married after she converted to Catholicism. Before that, she was baptized with the new name Oureana (Ourém – a muncipality where shepherds were inprisoned comes from her name). Very soon the princess died and her husbend after the loss of his beloved, decided to become a Cistercian monk. When he was sent to a little cloister in her memory he named the place Fatima.
2. Jesus first asked for the devotion of 5 First Saturdays
Contrary to what many people think, the 5 First Saturdays Devotion wasn’t explained to the little shepherds in Cova da Iria, but to Lúcia when she was 18 years old, in the convent at Pontevedra. Mary holding the baby Jesus appeared to Lúcia showing her heart surrounded by thorns and then He asked her for help to remove the thorns from the suffering heart of His mother:
Have compassion on the Heart of your Most Holy Mother, covered with thorns on which ungrateful men pierce It at every moment, and there is no one to make an act of reparation to remove them
3. The miracles of the shepherds
On 13th March 2017 the pope Francis approved the miracle needed for the canonization of Jacinta and Francisco. A young Brazilian, whose miraculous cure was attributed to two shepherd children will appear at their canonization in Fatima.
In 2007, when he was 5 years old he fell down from the high causing a severe head injury. The injury was so strong that the child could not survive or be mentally handicapped. During his stay in a hospital a carmelitan nun prayed for the blessed shepherds and insisted the whole community to do the same. Several days after the accident, doctors stated that the six-year-old was miraculously healed.
4. The miracle of the Sun and three visions
On October 13, 1917, a crowd of around 100 thousands of people gathered to witness the miracle that Mary promised to do. On the heavy rain spectators were standing and looking to Lúcia speaking to someone. They didn’t experience anything. Suddenly, when Lúcia cried out “Look at the Sun!”, the huge disc looking like a revolving ball of light started to dance, stopping and spinning again. People full of fears started to kneel praying and begging for mercy.
Before that miracle the three shepherds could see saint Joseph with the Child Jesus and Our Lady of Rosary. The second vision – Our Lady of Sorrows and Our Lord on the way to calvary – was seen only by Lúcia. Finally Our Lady of Mount Carmel appeared as the crowned queen of heaven holding Child Jesus. Those visions symbolizes the three rosary mysteries: joyful, sorrowful and glorious.
5. The crown with the bullet
One year after the attempt of the pope on 13 May 1981, John Paul II came to Fatima to thank Our Lady for saving his life. He placed one of the bullets which wounded him in St. Peter’s Square in the crown of the statue. The goldsmith who made the crown for the statue of Our Lady of Fatima left an empty space in the crown without knowing what will happen. He couldn’t explain why he left the gap, the bullet fit perfectly.