Saint Francisco Marto
(June 11, 1908 – April 4, 1919)
Saint Jacinta Marto
(March 11, 1910 – February 20, 1920)
Feast Day: February 20
One hundred years ago.
So much about Fatima has now been confirmed. Growing up, I was very much attached to the Fatima apparitions, the call to holiness, the promises of Our Lady - especially that she would take Jacinta and Francisco to heaven - although I was sure it would probably not be fulfilled in my lifetime. Yet it is unfolding right now. The example of the three children, especially Francisco and his fidelity to prayer, very much influenced my childhood piety, and as I learned more about prayer as an adult, he has been a guide and model for me to some extent. Our Lady promised to take them to heaven, and canonization is affirmation of that promise. I expect Lucia will be canonized soon.
I pray the rosary every day and have done the First Saturdays several times. I often think about the apparitions, the promises of Our Lady, the spiritual experiences each child had outside of the recorded apparitions and after the events, especially St. Jacinta's experiences.
It seems to me her particular experiences - especially her private visions, one or two specifically involving the 'Third Secret' and the papacy, one might be able to get a deeper understanding of the totality of the secret. I happen to believe we are most likely witnessing some of the calamity Jacinta saw. I also think there is ample room to believe that not just one pope was represented in the visions, but subsequent popes are most likely included. Of course the Holy See's interpretation suggested all the popes of the 20th century had much to suffer - hence, one might conclude, St. John Paul II was not the only pope connected with the vision.
I think it's silly how some speculate, or at least wonder as to why the Blessed Virgin didn't mention plagues - specifically the flu. Spirit Daily just posted something like that with current discussion of the Coronavirus. Or how some expected that Our Lady ought to have mentioned the idea of papal resignation and 2 popes. After all, it these matters are included in other private revelations, more or less. I always like to point out that the Blessed Virgin never mentioned the Holocaust, for instance. What did Pope Francis once say about such things? Didn't he dismiss stuff like that saying that Our Lady is not a news person? Daily reporting the news and weather? Something like that.
I'm not an expert, much less a scholar on the subject of Fatima, simply a devotee. Yet it seems to me, the message of Jacinta allows more room for conjecture and application to our contemporary situation than the general text of the Fatima Secret - one secret in 3 parts. Perhaps Jacinta understood things about the secret which we may be experiencing today. I don't know?
The essential Jacinta is for me, wrapped up in the following prophetic statements:
"I saw the Holy Father in a very big house, kneeling by a table, with his head buried in his hands, and he was weeping. Outside the house, there were many people. Some of them were throwing stones, others were cursing him and using bad language. Poor Holy Father, we must pray very much for him." - St. Jacinta
"Look! Don’t you see many roads, paths and fields full of people crying of hunger, not having anything to eat? And the Holy Father in a Church praying next to the Heart of Mary?" - St. Jacinta Marto
"Tell everybody that God grants us graces through the Immaculate Heart of Mary; that people are to ask her for them; and that the Heart of Jesus wants the Immaculate Heart of Mary to be venerated at his side. Tell them also to pray to the Immaculate Heart of Mary for peace, since God entrusted it to her." - Bl. Jacinta to Lucia
St. Jacinta devoted herself to prayer and suffering for the Pope, may she intercede for him in these times of crisis. St. Francisco was deeply contemplative and hidden, praying to console the 'Hidden Jesus' and making reparation for sins. Both Jacinta and Francisco prayed earnestly and constantly for the conversion of sinners. May these little saints, who have now reached full stature and maturity in Christ, intercede for all of us.