Our Lady of Fatima
Today is the ninetieth anniversary of the first of the apparitions at Fatima. It's also (a providential coincidence) the ninetieth anniversary of the episcopal ordination of Eugenio Pacelli, who as Pius XII was a great promoter of the Fatima message, and the twenty-sixth anniversary of the assassination attempt on John Paul II (the fact the bullet avoided all major organs was a result, he believed, of Our Lady's protection).
At Kingsland today we welcomed Br Aldo and Br Michael of the Heralds of the Gospel, together with members of their Third Order. They are a private association of pontifical right, originating in Brazil and with a house in London - in Hampton Wick (near Hampton Court Palace). At three of the morning Masses we started with a procession of the statue of Our Lady of Fatima and a prayer of consecration. Most impressive of all was the long queue of people after each Mass, waiting to venerate the image and receive from the Heralds a prayer card. Thanks to Br Michael, I thought I might post a few pictures to give you some of the 'flavour' of the morning. Popular piety is such an important part of the Church's life and much more accessible to the people than some other attempts at making the faith 'meaningful.' As one of the Heralds said, Our Lady is the 'key' that leads people so effectively to her Son.
P.S. The Heralds joined us for lunch (before going onto an Anglican church to preach the message of Fatima!). Also present were the two presbytery dogs, Oscar and Bruno, who were joined by their friend, Titus. Here are the three of them waiting on the stairs to see what was going on in the kitchen.