In what has been sometimes described as ‘the last vision of Fatima’, Sr. Lucia, one of the three children present when Our Blessed Lady appeared at Fatima, writes, in her own words her ‘last’ vision of the Holy Trinity.
Sister Lucia died on February 13 2005 at her Carmelite convent in Coimbra, Portugal, after a long illness. Living in isolation in the cloistered convent, Sister Lucia had reportedly lost her eyesight and hearing in the months preceding her death.
Francisco and Jacinta Marto were beatified by Pope John Paul in ceremonies that took place at Fatima on May 13, 2000– the anniversary of the first apparition there. Both Francisco and Jacinta had died in their youth– in 1919 and 1920, respectively. Sister Lucia made a rare journey outside the Carmelite cloister to take part in the ceremony.
Sister Lucia describes this great Vision of the Holy Trinity:
Being alone one night, I knelt near the rails in the middle of the chapel and, prostrate, I prayed the prayers of the Angel. Feeling tried, I then stood up and continued to say the prayers with my arms in the form of a cross. The only light was that of the sanctuary lamp. Suddenly the whole chapel was illumined by supernatural light, and above the alter appeared a cross of light, reaching to the ceiling. In a brighter light at the upper part of the cross, could be seen the face of a Man and his body as far as the waist; upon his breast was dove of light; nailed to the cross was the body of another man. A little below the waist, I could see a chalice and a large host suspended in the air, on to which drops of blood were falling from the face of Jesus Crucified and from the wound in His side. These drops ran down on to the host and fell into the chalice. Beneath the right arm of the cross was Our Lady and in her hand was her Immaculate heart. (It was Our Lady of Fatima, with her Immaculate Heart in her left hand, without sword or roses, but with a crown of thorns and flames). Under the left arm of the cross, large letters, as if of crystal clear water which ran down upon the alter, formed these words: «Grace and Mercy.» I understood that it was the Mystery of the Most Holy Trinity which was shown to me, and I received lights about this mystery which I am not permitted to reveal.
Our Lady then said to me: «The moment has come in which God asks the Holy Father, in union with all the Bishops of the world, to make the consecration of Russia to my Immaculate Heart, promising to save it by this means. There are so many souls whom the Justice of God condemns for sins committed against me, that I have come to ask reparation: sacrifice yourself for this intention and pray.»
I gave an account of this to the confessor, who ordered me to write down what Our Lady wanted done. Later, in an intimate communication. Our Lord complained to me saying: «They did not wish to heed my request. Like the King of France, they will repent and do it, but it will be late. Russia will have already spread her errors throughout the world, provoking wars, and persecutions of the Church; the Holy Father will have much to suffer.»
CROSS OF LIGHT
First, Sr. Lucia sees a “Cross of light reaching to the ceiling.” This might signify that God’s love is poured out on the world through the sacrifice of the Son on the Cross. It also proclaims that every Mass is a re-enactment of the sacrifice on Calvary. In addition, it may be a symbol of the Illumination which is going to come upon the whole earth, when we see our souls as Our Blessed Lord sees them (accompanied, say some Catholic mystics, by an illuminated Cross in the sky.) This will be a gift from the Heavenly Father—a final act of mercy before the world enters her most painful purification. Hence, Sr. Lucia sees the Father who is Love over top of the Cross.
With the Illumination of consciences, there will also be an outpouring of the Holy Spirit to equip the Church for the “final confrontation” with the powers of darkness of this era and their minions who refuse the grace of the Illumination. This outpouring will increase until the culmination of this purification, when the Spirit will come like fire to renew the face of the earth. And thus, the Spirit is also pictured above the Cross.
PASSION OF THE CHURCH
But what of this Cross? It is thought that what Sr. Lucia saw was a prophetic image of the Church about to enter her own Passion, symbolized by the offering of the Sacrifice of the Mass in the chalice and Host. The Blood which fell came from “the Face of Christ.” And we, the Church, are indeed the face of Christ to the world.
The Church will enter the glory of the kingdom only through this final Passover, when she will follow her Lord in his death and Resurrection. —Catechism of the Catholic Church, 677
The Blessed Virgin stands beneath the right arm of the Cross. In traditional royalty, the King holds the Staff or Rod that represents his power in his right hand. It’s this staff that is used to execute judgment or mercy. She, who is also a symbol of the Church, holds out her heart which carries the crown of thorns to indicate that the Church must now wear the crown of her Lord. It is set aflame with the fire of the Holy Spirit, who is Love, to indicate at once both the Triumph of Our Lady and the Triumph of the Church, which will be an action through the Third Person of the Trinity.
THE TWO TIMES
The words “Grace and Mercy” are to indicate the two distinct periods we are in, which began at different times, occur simultaneously, but end differently.
The “time of grace” began to flow like water with Our Lady’s apparitions at Rue de Bac to St. Catherine Labouré. Our Lady appeared standing on a globe to indicate the global significance of her visitations. She appeared with her hands covered in rings and jewels from which light shone toward the globe. She tells St. Catherine that “These rays symbolize the graces I shed upon those who ask for them. The jewels which give no rays symbolize the graces that are not given because they are not asked for.” She asks St. Catherine to have a medal struck which illustrates her as the “mediatrix” of all graces. God in His mercy has given the Church two centuries to receive these graces to prepare, in particular, for the time of mercy.
The “time of mercy” began when an angel with a sword, who appeared in a vision to the children of Fatima, was about to strike the earth with a chastisement. Our Blessed Mother suddenly appeared again with light emanating from her. The angel’s punishment was postponed as he cried out to the earth, “Penance, penance, penance!” We know this began what Jesus called the “time of mercy” when He spoke to St. Faustina sometime later.
I am prolonging the time of mercy for the sake of [sinners]…. While there is still time, let them have recourse to the fount of My mercy… He who refuses to pass through the door of My mercy must pass through the door of My justice. —Diary of St Faustina, 1160, 848, 1146
What is the difference? This time of grace is a period in which, through our Blessed Lady’s intercession, she is drawing great graces upon the Church to prepare her for the final confrontation with the powers of darkness in this present era. The time of mercy will continue through the chastisements which will follow (even if few accept His mercy) until God purifies the earth of all wickedness, thus beginning a time of peace.Those who refuse His mercy must pass through the door of His justice.
In these troubled times we ask Our Lady of Fatima to intercede for our World, our beloved Holy Father and our Church.