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May 13, 2015

Our Lady came as a Catechist to Fatima and She is a Model Catechist for Parents Today!

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Our Lady was Catechist at Fatima
Catechesis is instruction aimed at deepening the life of faith and conversion to Christ. In the words of the General Catechetical Directory, catechetics "is intended to make men's faith become living, conscious and active, through the light of instruction.  Ideally speaking, in areas where a Christian culture continues to operate, children are evangelized by their parents at home. The parents develop the child's growth in faith through catechesis. This instruction is then supplemented by the Church's catechetical and pre-sacramental programs

Having said that:  if the parents themselves are defectively evangelized or not evangelized at all, they are unprepared for catechetical teaching. The instruction will be senseless if the catechized person, in turn, is un-prepared to live the Christian life to set a living example in the home to supplement what the church is teaching their children in their Catechism programs.

Tertullian in the first Christian centuries stated: "Christians are not born. They are made." The Church has always understood the absolute necessity of evangelizing and catechizing young children. This is the parents duty for their children.  Our Lady's appearance at Fatima  preceded by the angel in 1916, teaches  parents how to teach their children  working with the the graces God has given them.  Parents must help their  children by teaching them how to practice the virtues. Charity, mercy, prudence justice, fortitude, temperance, humility to overcome the capital sins of pride greed, lust, anger, sloth, envy, and gluttony. The virtues need to be taught to children as Our Lady and the Angel did to the shepherds of Fatima. This is how future vocations are formed in the homes by the example of the parents.

How many parents coddle and pamper their children, never teaching these little souls entrusted to them by God the importance of prayer and sacrifice and the consequences of sin.  We greatly underestimate the capacity of children for prayer and sacrifice! When children are taught by example they are generous in their response to the good. Very often the children's unreserved "offering of self" far surpasses the half-hearted offering of adults, who are overly imbued with self-love and attachment to material wealth, prestige, security, and comfortable living.  

Rev. Joseph Pelletier, in his book The Sun Danced At Fatima. p. 30, reported that on May 13, 1917  in Moscow a sizable group of children and their catechist were brutally slaughtered by the agents of Lenin as a catechetical lesson was in progress in a Catholic Church. This vicious attack on the Church graphically symbolizes the forces in the modern world that seek to silence the proclamation of the Word of God—especially to the young. On that very day, maybe at the very hour of the diabolical slaughter of these innocents in Russia, Mary, the Mother of God, came visibly into our world. This time she came to three young, illiterate children in Portugal and began a series of catechetical instructions for the children and, through them, for the entire Church.

For more information on the The Catechetical Approach of Our Lady at Fatima   Follow the link for reprint of the pamphlet by Fr. Frederick Miller titled Mary Catechist at Fatima. Fr. Frederick L. Miller, was for some years the President of the World Apostolate of Fatima and is currently a priest of the Archdiocese of Newark, N.J., he is Chairman of the Department of Systematic Theology at Mount St. Mary's Seminary in Emmitsburg, Maryland.

Our Lady a model Catechist did not spare Little Children; only 6, 8, & 9 years old a frightful vision Hell!


As Our Lady spoke to them she opened her lovely hands, disclosing beneath a sea of fire; and plunged in this fire were the demons and the souls, as if they were red-hot coals, transparent and black or bronze colored; with human forms, which floated about in the conflagration, borne by the flames which issued from it with great clouds of smoke, falling on all sides as sparks fall in great conflagrations -- without weight or equilibrium, among shrieks and groans of sorrow and despair which horrify and cause to shudder with fear. The devils were distinguished by horrible and loathsome forms of animals frightful and unknown, but transparent like black coals that have turned red-hot.
 Think of that! Through this frightful vision the children were taught the consequences due to sin. That souls who sin and are not repentant will end up on fire burning there for all eternity. "Here you have seen Hell, where the souls of poor sinners go," she said at length. "To save them God wishes to establish in the world the devotion to my Immaculate Heart. If they do what I will tell you, many souls will be saved, and there will be peace.

Granted our Children our not fortified with a special grace to see Hell like the children of Fatima.  Having said that however, we  have an obligation to teach our children the reality of Heaven, Hell and purgatory. Many moms think Hell is to scary to teach young children in order to prepare them to make good choices for Heaven. Yet these same moms have no qualms to take them or let them watch to the latest thriller movie.  

Our Lady came to Fatima to combat the atheism, rebellion and materialism of the modern world. She came from God to save souls from unbelief, sin and ultimately from hellfire. She came, begging all believers to join Christ in his work of redemption by living faith-filled and holy lives.

Servant of God Fr. John Hardon, S.J.
On Mary as a Model Catechist 
Servant of God Fr. John Hardon, S.J.
"We do not usually talk about Mary as a catechist and we do not commonly think of her as a model for those who catechize. But the Blessed Virgin Mary is not only a pattern; she is a perfect model of what every catechist in the Catholic Church should be. We say that Mary is the perfect model of what every Catholic catechist should be. In saying this, we affirm what may not be obvious—that Mary was a catechist. She did instruct others in the one, true Faith. And she did it so admirably that we may legitimately call her the Mother of Catechists What are we saying here? We are saying two things: A catechist instructs others, which means teaches others by enlightening the mind to inspire the will. A catechist never merely teaches to instruct the mind, but always to enlighten the mind in order to inspire the will."  Read More....                                                             

To Help Parents become better Catechists consider taking the Basic Catechetical Course with the Marian Catechist Apostolate founded by the Servant of God Fr. John Hardon, S.J.