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The Immaculate Heart of Mary

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Excerpt from Feasts of Love: The Sacred Heart of Jesus and The Immaculate Heart of Mary by Monsignor Pagulayan

The Immaculate Heart of Mary is immaculate, meaning, spotless, most clean because it was the heart that would love and be modeled after the love of Her divine Son, the Savior of all including His blessed Mother. This devotion started also quietly among the monks and nuns way back in the 13th century. They did not know that they were preparing the world for something great. It took St John Eudes who, about the same time of St Marguerite Marie Alacoque, wrote extensively on the devotion to the Hearts of Jesus and Mary. The devotion then was to the Most Pure Heart of Mary and in 1855 an office and mass were approved for this title of Mary without imposing them upon the whole Church. It was only in 1944 that Pope Pius XII instituted the feast of the Immaculate Heart of Mary on 22 August. But in 1969, Pope Blessed Paul VI moved it to the Saturday after the Solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus as we have it now, to show the close association of the two feasts (The Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary) to one another. It teaches us that after all the great feasts of Christianity, the Paschal Mystery, namely, the Suffering, Death and Resurrection of Christ, His Ascension,the Pentecost, the honor we give to the Most Holy Trinity,  the celebration of the greatest gift of the Lord to us, His Body and Blood, and then everything goes back to the love and mercy of the Father who is Jesus Himself whom we honor in His Heart.  But that’s not the end of it all, there is still another heart that beats in unison with that of  the Son in love for the Father and in love for those who are beloved in the Son, the Immaculate Heart of Mary, whose Heart was also pierced like that of her Son due to the ingratitude of mankind. They are united from the beginning in joy and in sorrow. These Hearts offer themselves to be imitated, to be consecrated to and to join in their work of reparation of the damage done to creation because of sin. They offer themselves so that in us the work of God’s love, mercy and salvation may continue until the return of the Lord. What a beautiful handiwork this isThis plan was, so to speak, to be sealed by yet another apparition.

 It started also in a small way, this time it was by an angel, who identified himself as the Angel of Peace, of Portugal. Again with the small and powerless! Who would suspect they would be chosen and prepared for such a mission. These three poor children pasturing the sheep of their families along the hillside in a place called Cabeco, a town in Portugal near a place named after the daughter of Mohamad, Fatima. He appeared three times from the Spring of 1916 through summer and autumn. They were taught  prayers  by the Angel, to offer sacrifices  and they were told, to “pray, pray much! The Hearts of Jesus and Mary have designs of mercy on you. Offer prayers and sacrifices constantly to the Most High.” These apparitions left deep impression on them of the divine that they didand imitated what the Angel did and told them. They kept every thing to themselves.

 Until the following year, about the same time when the Angel appeared, the  13th of May they had this very strange visit of a radiant Lady who claimed she came from heaven and who asked them to pray the rosary, to come to the same place on the 13th of every month six times and on the last she would reveal to them who she was and what she wanted and give a sign.

We know what happened since the 13th of May 1917 up to the 13th of October and hence forth. Last year, one hundred years ago, the sister and brother Francisco and Jacinta Sarto who died two years after the apparitions were declared Saints of the Church by His Holiness Pope Francis himself in Fatima. Lucia dos Santos entered the convent and joined the Dorotheans  while receiving further messages in Tuyand Pontevedra and ultimately to become Sister Maria Lucia de Jesus and of the Immaculate Heart, when she joined the Carmelites at Coimbra in Portugal. She passed on into eternity in February 13, 2005 to join her namesake and friend after fulfilling her task of guiding the Church through long years into a deeper understanding of the messages given them at Fatima and beyond. According to her; THE HEART OF MARY GAVE TO FATIMA NOT ONLY ITS INDIVIDUALITY AMONG THE CHARISMS OF THE CHURCH, BUT IMPARTED UNITY TO ALL THE OTHER THEMES.” An expert on Fatima said: “ If Our Lady is, in the Church, a “sacramental presence of the maternal traits of God” nothing portrays her better than the symbol of a Heart. Her heart indeed is the echo of Her Son’s, a clear image, a safe way, a refuge and haven for all of the Fathers children.

Immaculate Heart of Mary and the Marian Movement of Priests

At this point we can say something about the cenacles of the Marian Movement of Priests. We all know Fr Stefano Gobbi, a lowly and simple Italian priest who madea pilgrimage to Fatima and he prayed  before the Image of our Lady at the Chapel of Apparitions, May 8, 1972, 55 years after the Fatima appararitions.  He was then praying for some priest friends who were planning to leave the priesthood and rebel against the church authorities, He felt a strong interior force urging him to have confidence to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Our Lady, making use of him as a poor instrument, would gather all those priests who would accept her invitation to consecrate themselves to her Immaculate Heart, to be strongly united to the Pope and to the Church united with him, and to bring the faithful into the secure refuge of her Immaculate Heart.” He sought confirmation of this with a little sign which he got at the end of the same month while praying at the Shrine of the Annunciation at Nazareth. With the help of his Spiritual Director, he set out to begin his mission. He was guided by Our Lady through interior locutions, themessages of which, he committed to writing. 604 messages collected into a book from 1973 to 1997 under the title, TO THE PRIESTS Our Lady’s Beloved Sons”.It started quietly with three priests, now forty-six years later it has reached to whole world, with thousands of priests, among which are hundreds of  bishops and some Cardinals and hordes of unnamed laymen and women who constantly inspire and support us among the clergy.

 It is very clear that Fatima is continued by the MMP. The Cenacles are the schools of Mary. They are the cohort prepared by our Lady to find refuge in her Immaculate Heart. These  cenacles become the small groups like the apostles in prayer with the Mother of Jesus in  the upper room who received the Holy Spirit and were sent into the world to proclaim the triumph of her Heart and that of the Sacred Heart and that of His Eucharistic reign. Fr Gobbi has returned to his Mother in heaven whom he so assiduously served here on earth. The movement he started continues making Our Lady and our Lord center in the lives of those who form the cenacle.

 

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