BY Daniel Harkins | May 19 2017 | comments icon 0 COMMENTS     print icon print

1-FATIMA

Faith today is increasingly under attack, bishop says as Scots mark Fatima centenary

Bishop Keenan told the crowds in Carfin that the Church is often ‘too lukewarm’ in its condemnation of evil

Freedom of Catholic Faith is being increasingly oppressed and there is a need for a ‘renewal of the spirit of Fatima’ in the Church, Bishop John Keenan said on May 13 as Scotland celebrated the centenary of the Marian apparitions in Portugal.

Bishop Keenan lead the events at Carfin Grotto which saw hundreds gather to mark the canonisation of Sts Francisco and Jacinta, two of the three children who witnessed the 1917 apparitions of Our Lady in Portugal. Across the country, Catholics celebrated the momentous occasion including in Carfin, where Bishop Keenan called for the renewal of a Church which can be ‘too lukewarm in its resistance to evil.’

Faith, the Bishop of Paisley said, is just as threatened now as it was in 1917, when Our Lady predicted the onset of the Second World War and the rise of Communism. “We live in times where the truth is denied right, left, and centre; where our freedom to speak of our Catholic Faith and morals is oppressed more and more—sometimes criminalised,” he said. “Even in our country there are parts of the Gospel which may not be spoken. We live in times of threat like never before to the sanctity of human life in the womb. We live in times never before seen of attacks on family and the truth and meaning of human sexuality.

“Add in the materialism, the secularism, the atheism that surrounds us; add in to the mix a Church which at times is just too lukewarm in its resistance to evil and promotion of the Faith, and we realise that the message of Fatima is a message for now. And a message for me. And a message for you.”

“Let us pray also for the renewal of the spirit of Fatima in our Church, that the Immaculate Heart of Mary may triumph again and we might enjoy the peace and the life of Christ.”

On May 13, Pope Francis canonised the youngest non-martyred saints of the Church before the Basilica of Our Lady of the Rosary. “We declare and define Blessed Francisco Marto and Blessed Jacinta Marto as saints,” the Holy Father said to a crowd hundreds of thousands strong.

 

daniel@sconews.co.uk

 

Read more on Scotland’s Fatima celebrations, and see our exclusive report from the canonisations, in the May 19 edition of the SCO, available in parishes

 

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