Loading
Fatima statue inspires devotion, prayer in Castel Gandolfo
A statue of Our Lady at the Church of St. Thomas of Villanueva on April 7, 2014. Credit: Lucia Fiore/CNA.
A statue of Our Lady at the Church of St. Thomas of Villanueva on April 7, 2014. Credit: Lucia Fiore/CNA.
By Lucia Fiore
Facebook Twitter Google+ Pinterest Addthis

.- Locals and swarms of pilgrims from various parts of the world gathered in Castel Gandolfo outside of Rome recently to show their Marian devotion and join in communal prayer.

From April 3-7, the Pontifical Church Saint Thomas of Villanova hosted the statue of Our Lady of Fatima. Parish priest Father Pietro Diletti told CNA that the arrival of the statue has sparked an intensity and ardor of faith within the local community as well as the throngs of visitors.

“It's been in the thousands because there are so many pilgrims – there is a continual coming and going of even non-Catholics who try to get close to Madonna,” he said. “The Masses are overflowing and also the Rosary and the Stations of the Cross.”

“I'm glad that this devotion is coming from the hearts of people.”

The priest noted that some of the locals in Castel Gandolfo have visited the statue at its original home in Portugal.

“I had never been to Fatima,” Fr. Diletti said, but he reflected that the “dozen of the faithful who visited the Madonna” in Portugal have now had the experience of the statue reciprocating the gesture.

The church which houses the statue of Our Lady of Fatima was designed by Italian artist and architect Gian Lorenzo Bernini and built in 1651. In earlier years, it was a crypt called the Church of St. Nicholas and Gabriel the Archangel, but at the request of Alexander VII, it was restored by Bernini and made into the present-day structure.

Of all Marian apparitions, those relating to Our Lady of Fatima are among the most famous. On May 13, 1917, brothers Francisco and Jacinta Marto – 9 and 7 years-old – and their cousin, 10-year-old Lucia dos Santos, were with their sheep grazing near the Portuguese town of Fatima when they saw a figure of a woman dressed in white and holding a rosary.

After this first appearance, the Virgin Mary would come to the children on the 13th of the month from May until October. The message of the Fatima apparitions can be summarized primarily as a call to repentance and prayer.

In 1930, the Catholic Church proclaimed the supernatural character of the apparitions and a shrine was erected at Fatima. It was visited by Pope Paul VI on May 13, 1967, and later by Pope John Paul II.

Tags: Our Lady of Fatima

Ads by AdsLiveMedia(What's this?)

* The number of messages that can be online is limited. CNA reserves the right to edit messages for content and tone. Comments and opinions expressed by users do not necessarily reflect the opinions or beliefs of CNA. CNA will not publish comments with abusive language, insults or links to other pages

RESOURCES »

Ads by Google (What's this?)

Featured Videos

An Indian contribution to the Vatican's Synod on the Family
An Indian contribution to the Vatican's Synod on the Family
Christ Cathedral CNA video Sept 2014
Alejandro Bermudez of CNA accepts ice bucket challenge
'The Real Albania,' remembering those who fled
Pope Francis in Albania, "one of the most important visits of the post-communist era in Albania"
Pope Francis greets paralyzed man who risked all to see him
Franciscans on the banks of the Tiber in Rome, working for the New Evangelization
Pilgrimage from Czech Republic to Assisi and Rome for intentions
Testimony of young Indian who met Pope in Korea
Preparations of the Closing Mass of 6th Asian Youth Day
Missionary of Charity, Korea
Testimony of Christian Love during Pope's Visit to Korea
Religious Sisters in South Korea react to Pope Francis kissing a baby
Warm atmosphere during Holy Mass at Daejeon World Cup Stadium
Images inside Pope Francis flight to South Korea
The tombs of the early Christians
Missionaries of Africa, called "the White Fathers"
Italian youth give testimony after mission to Peru
Interview with Iraqi Ambassador to the Holy See on the persecution of Christians
New book 'The Vatican unknown'
Oct
23

Liturgical Calendar

October 23, 2014

Thursday of the Twenty-Ninth Week in Ordinary Time

All readings:
Today »
This year »

Catholic Daily

Gospel of the Day

Lk 12:49-53

Gospel
Date
10/23/14
10/22/14
10/21/14

Daily Readings


First Reading:: Eph 3:14-21
Gospel:: Lk 12: 49-53

Saint of the Day

St. Romuald »

Saint
Date
10/23/14

Homily of the Day

Lk 12:49-53

Homily
Date
10/23/14
10/22/14
10/21/14