The recitation of the Holy Rosary in Fatima on the feast of the Annunciation of the Blessed Virgin Mary ended with a triple act of consecration of Portugal to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, pronounced by a visibly moved Cardinal Marto in union with the bishops of other churches scattered throughout the world. It was of an absolutely touching religious intensity.
In a time of emergency such as the current pandemic triggered by the notorious Covid-19, to know how to cling to the Heart of the Mother of God is what distinguishes those who still have the true Catholic faith from those who have been overwhelmed by discouragement. There is no middle ground or possible compromise.
At the same time, it is sad and painful to ascertain the total absence of any interest, however remote, from the Italian bishops. Although they received many solicitations by email to join the initiative promoted by this blog, signed by Dr. Ettore Gotti Tedeschi, our bishops have not shown the slightest disposition to join, as part of the Italian Church, this extraordinary act to renew the consecration to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.
I cannot even remotely think they did this out of malice – only God can judge. I am unable to doubt the sincerity and kindness of those whom I know. Instead, I just think that this is further proof of our still fragile faith, which the Lord wants us to renew. This reminded me of that passage from the Old Testament in which Moses is unable to convince the Pharaoh of Egypt to let the people of Israel go, who are enslaved in that country. In that passage, God himself says: “I will harden the heart of Pharaoh” (Ex 7,3). But He goes on to say: “I will multiply my signs and wonders.”
I expect with full confidence that the Lord will grant our people a true conversion, precisely through these and other tests for our faith. The system is exploding at all levels, and even the Church, which had held until a few years ago, is losing public visibility, but not in the innermost part of the minds and hearts of many laity and clergy.
If they want, there is still time to perform in Italy an act similar to the one held in Fatima, renewing the consecration done by Pius XII in 1942.
In any case, if the Italian bishops at least individually remain silent, entrenched behind the Italian Bishops’ Conference, almost as if it were a body of divine law instituted by Christ (!), the individual faithful are still able to perform (even repeatedly and from a distance) individual or community acts of consecration. And the priests can consecrate their parishes in private celebrations behind closed doors like those in the Cenacle (“when the doors were shut where the disciples gathered together for fear of the Jews, Jesus came”- John 20:19) to consecrate their parishes, religious communities, and groups of faithful entrusted to them. I am sure that many will do so, and they would do well to make it known through friendly blogs like this one and many others. It will be an example for everyone! Veni Sancte Spiritus, venit per Mariam!