Fatima, Portugal, Dec 27, 2017 / 11:49 am America/Denver (CNA).
Officials with the beatification cause of Sister Lucia dos Santos have collected thousands of pages of materials testifying to the holiness of the nun, one of the three children who were witnesses to the famous Marian apparitions at Fatima.
The documentation gathered for Sr. Lucia consists of over 15,000 letters, testimonies, and other documents that would support the nun’s cause for beatification. Bishop Virgilio Antunes of Coimbra, Portugal noted that these pages have taken more than eight years to track down, as they consist of personal letters and witness statements from more than 60 people.
The pages were presented at a church ceremony at Sr. Lucia’s convent in Coimbra, and then sent to the Vatican’s Congregation for the Causes of Saints for approval, in order to proceed towards the next steps of canonization. The case must also be reviewed by Pope Francis.
Of all Marian apparitions, those relating to Our Lady of Fatima are among the most famous. On May 13, 1917, siblings Francisco and Jacinta Marto – ages 9 and 7 – and their cousin, 10-year-old Lucia dos Santos, took their sheep to graze near the Portuguese farming 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 then appeared to the children on the 13th of every month from May until October. The message of the Fatima apparitions can be summarized primarily as a call to repentance, reparation and prayer.