Excerpt: Fatima for Today – from Chapter 18
“In the End, My Immaculate Heart Will Triumph”
“Toward the end of World War II, a group of people survived the atom bomb dropped on Hiroshima, Japan, in a Catholic church less than one mile from the epicenter of the blast. Everything around them was completely destroyed, and everyone in the area was killed. Yet, amazingly no harm was done to the church building or to the people inside, not even from the radioactive fallout from the explosion. When asked how he could account for this incredible situation, one of the priests who survived said: ‘I can only tell you that we have always tried to fulfill the message of Our Lady of Fatima!’ Our Lady provides special protection to those who respond fully to her requests. She has given us the encouraging sign to remind us that she is always watching over us when we are trying to do what pleases Almighty God and to fulfill the requests she has made at Fatima for peace in the world through the salvation of souls.
“We, too, must survive warfare, but it is most often the spiritual warfare brought on by the evils of our times, with its attacks on life, our family and our faith. No doubt Our Lady is protecting us from many spiritual assaults that are not as obvious as an atomic bomb, but are nevertheless real. She is likewise preparing her spiritual sons and daughters for the struggles that will lead ultimately to the triumph of her Immaculate Heart. In earthly warfare, the General of the Army is in charge. In spiritual warfare, Jesus is in charge. But he has chosen to direct some of us through his mother. [Someone once told me that if we were to think of Our Lady as a general, then according to the book of Revelation (12:1), Our Lady would be a 12-star general.] A military general has to provide and direct the plans for battle. The general decides what will work to accomplish a victory, and what will not. The general must also determine which weapons will be most effective. Hasn’t Our Lady done something like this for us at Fatima? She has told us the evils that would come upon the world, especially with the rise of Communism. She told us how it could be defeated, not as a political or economic system, but as a spiritual evil intent on destroying God’s order in the lives of men. She told us that to achieve a spiritual victory, we need to live holy lives of Christian virtue. We also need to pray and offer our sacrifices for the conversion of sinners. Finally, she told us that the most effective weapon, after the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, is the Rosary. Saint Louis-Marie Grignion de Montfort and many other great Marian saints have stressed the point that Our Lady prepares her faithful sons and daughters for battle.
“When I was a young novice over 50 years ago, my novice master repeatedly said: ‘Form your convictions now because you will have to live the rest of your lives based on them.’ That was good advice. One of the things we must be absolutely convinced of is that Our Lady is calling each one of us to be involved in this struggle. Convictions produce doers. Someone once said: ‘One person with a belief is equal in force to 99 people who merely have an interest.’ Do we really believe in what Our Lady is asking of us? Are we convinced of its importance, or are we merely interested in it?”