Welcome to the second apparition of the Blessed Virgin Mother at Fatima!
As you can imagine, the reactions of the parents of the three children; Jacinta, Francisco, and Lucia, were varying. Jacinta and Francisco’s parents believed them, but Lucia’s mother believed her daughter to be lying. Lucia was given a beating. However, the children still returned to the Cova da Iria on June 13th to see Our Lady.
Although the father of Francisco and Jacinta accepted their accounts of the event, Lucia’s mother was convinced she was lying, gave her a painful beating, and tried to make her retract her story but in vain. On June 13th, the children went back to the Cova despite their parents’ attempts to get them to come to the festival of St. Anthony of Padua. The Lady appeared again at noon — onlookers saw the sun dim at this precise time — and asked that they pray five Rosaries a day and continue to come back on the 13th of each month. The children were to learn to read. The Lady told Lucia that Francisco and Jacinta would be taken to Heaven soon, and she alone would be left in the world — and her mission would be to spread devotion to the Lady’s Immaculate Heart, for this devotion was of assistance on the journey of salvation. She left as before in the direction of the east. (God Sent, 109-110).
Lucia speaks to the Virgin three times. First, she asks for the cure of a sick man to which the Blessed Virgin replies, “If he is converted, he will be cured during the year.” (God-Sent, 112). Next, Lucia requests that Our Lady take Jacinta, Francesco, and herself to heaven; and to this Our Mother responds, “Yes, I will take Jacinta and Francisco soon. But you are to stay here some time longer. Jesus wishes to make use of you to make me known and loved. He wants to establish in the world devotion to my Immaculate Heart.” (God-Sent, 112-113). Upon hearing that she will be left alone, Lucia becomes concerned. Our Mother comforts her saying, “No, my daughter. Are you suffering a great deal? Don’t lose heart. I will never forsake you. My Immaculate Heart will be your refuge and the way that will lead you to God.” (God-Sent, 113).
May these words of our Blessed Mother comfort us as well. May we also take refuge in her Immaculate Heart.
Resources: God-Sent: A History of the Accredited Apparitions of Mary. Roy Abraham Varghese. (Crossroad Publishing Company: New York), 2000.