1) A Letter From Dr. Mendes To His Fiancée, written in September, 1917, See appendix.
2) The title, or designation, Ti, is a customary form of address in the country villages of Portugal, appropriate to a man who is of the village and its traditions; it is not a form held suitable to men of wealth and education, or, for that matter, touring Americans.
3) My years in the priesthood have more than once afforded an opportunity for the study of pseudo-mysticism, and I can affirm with every confidence that false mystics and Sister Lucia are strangers far apart.
4) In Portuguese villages people are more commonly known by their nicknames than their real ones.
5) Lucia's First Communion, see appendix above.
6) The fact that Francisco's parents differ from Lucia in this measuring of his spirit and fortitude is not surpising - how children behave before parents and how they behave before others is oftentimes q;uite different.
7) Senhora Teresa is the mother of nine children, the oldest being approximately twenty-one. In this part of Portugal the crowding of so many heirs to Heaven under a single roof is still considered to be far more a blessing than a burden. It is rare to find a family with less than four or five dividends of marriage in a community where all the sacraments appear to be honored by love and obedience.
8) This prayer spoken by the angel to children who could not read or write, nor by any means other than memory retain what they had heard was so indelibly etched in their minds that the verbatim original remains: Meu Deus, eu creio, adoro, espero e amo-Vos. Peco-Vos, perdao para os que nao creem, nao adoram, nao esperam e nao Vos amam.
9) The Seventh Apparition, See appendix above.
10) This is the first secret of the Fatima apparitions that Lucia revealed to her confessor. "On December 17th, 1927," she has disclosed, "I prayed to Our Lord, asking how I could be obedient to my confessor in regard to certain graces if, among them, was the secret of Our Lady. Jesus, in a clear voice, permitted me to hear these words: My daughter, write what your confessor commands you to write, and also all that the Blessed Virgin revealed in the apparitions in reference to devotion to her Immaculate Heart. The rest of the secret you must continue to conceal."
11) Another report from our friend, Maria da Capelinha, may illuminate our Lady's relations with the children of Aljustrel. "One day," she said, "I met Jacinta and Lucia and asked Lucia why it was that Our Lady spoke only with her, but not with her cousin. 'It's because Jacinta's tongue-tied,' Lucia told me 'If she would only speak to Our Lady, I know Our Lady would speak to her. Jacinta then looked at us both, and all she did was smile."
12) If Our Lady did not cure or enrich Maria's son John, she at least ensured him a livelihood, since he is today sacristan of the Chapel of the Apparitions in the Cova da Iria.
13) This is the secret which was to cause the children so much suffering. Only after the death of Francisco (1919) and of Jacinta (1920) did Lucia reveal the first and second parts. As to the third part, only in 1960 shall we know what the Blessed Virgin told the children of Aljustrel. It is in the possession of the bishop of Leiria, written by Lucia, and placed in a sealed envelope. "It may seem," she said later, "that I should have revealed these things sooner than I did and that their value would have been doubled. It might have been so if God had wished me to appear before the world as a prophetess, but such was not His Will. If it had been, He would not have ordered me to keep silence but to speak. I think Our Lady only wished to make use of me to remind the world of the necessity of the avoidance of sin, and of reparation for so many offences against God by means of prayer and penance."
14) By Lucia's interpretation, this refers to the souls in the greatest danger of condemnation. The prayer itself, in Portuguese, is as follows: O meu Jesus perdoai-nos, livrai-nos do fogo do inferno; levai todas as almas para o ceu, especialmente as que mais precisarem.
15) Lucia recognized the sign of God in the extraordinary "aurora borealis" which illuminated the night sky on January 24-25, 1938. She was convinced that the world war was about to break out and did everything possible to hasten forward the recommendations of Our Lady. But she was to be convinced that the hour of mercy had not yet arrived.
16) This conversation among the three children is a literal extract from Lucia's Memoirs.
17) Perhaps the flight of the multitudes before the invading armies and the aerial bombardments of World War II. Perhaps the concentration camps of then and now?
18) Ti Marto is mistaken on this point. Lucia was in fact questioned by the parish priest at the request of the mayor, according to the Canonical Inquiry. "Who taught you to say the things which you are saying?" Father Ferreira asked. "The Lady I saw in the Cova da Iria."
"Those who go about spreading such lies as you are doing will be judged and will go to Hell if they are not true. More and more people are being deceived by you."
"If people who lie go to Hell then I shall not go to Hell, because I am not lying and I say only what I saw and what the Lady told me. And the people go there because they want to; we do not tell them to go."
"Is it true that the Lady told you a secret?"
"Yes, but I cannot tell it. If your Reverence wants to know it, I will ask the Lady, and if she allows me to, then I will tell it to you." The mayor said: "These are supernatural things. Let us go." He got up and went out of the room, obliging the children to enter the carriage in the presence of their fathers.
19) That all this was not an empty threat is indicated by the fact that the Rev. Ferreira, priest of Fatima, felt obliged to publish in the Ordem, of Lisbon, and the Ouriense, of Ourem, a defense of his attitude. He wrote a letter to the editor entitled: To Believers And Non-Believers: Reluctantly as a Catholic priest, I beg to make known and to declare the following before all those who may know or hear rumor - infamous and damaging to my reputation as parish priest—that I was an accomplice in the imprisonment of three children in my parish who assert that they have seen Our Lady. I make this statement on the authority of the parents and for the satisfaction of the 5,000 to 6,000 persons who came many miles and with great sacrifice to see and speak with them. I deny this infamous and insidious calumny, and declare before the whole world that I had nothing whatever to do, directly or indirectly, with this impious and sacrilegious action. The mayor did not confide his intentions to me. And if it was providential—which it was—that he acted secretly and without any resistance on the part of the children, it was no less than providential that the excitement to which this diabolical rumor gave rise was calmed, or the parish would certainly have had to mourn the death of its priest as an accomplice in the crime. That the devil did not succeed in this, was due certainly to the Virgin Mother. The mayor, after a protracted interrogation in their own houses, had the children brought to mine under the pretext of collecting more accurate information about the secret which they had refused to reveal to anyone. Then, at the time when he judged opportune, he ordered them into the carriage, and telling the parents that he was taking them to the Cova da Iria, in fact took them to Vila Nova de Ourem. Why did he choose my house from which to act? In order to escape the consequences of his action? In order that the people should riot, as they did, and accuse me of complicity? Or for some other reason? I do not know. I only know that I deny all responsibility in the matter, and leave judgment to God. No one can prevent a work of God. Thousands of eyewitnesses can attest that the presence of the children was not necessary for the Queen of Heaven to manifest her power. They themselves will attest to the extraordinary phenomena which occurred to confirm their faith. But now, it is not a trio of children, but thousands of people of all ages, classes and conditions who have seen for themselves. If my absence from the Cova, as parish priest, gave offence to believers, my presence as a witness would have been no less objectionable to unbelievers. [A priest is ordained to give aide to the faithful, not to kowtow to unbelievers – editor’s note] The Blessed Virgin has no need of the parish priest in order to manifest her goodness and the enemies of religion need not tarnish their benevolence by attributing the faith of the people to the presence or otherwise of the parish priest. Faith is a gift of God and not of the priests. This is the true motive of my absence and apparent indifference to such a sublime and marvelous event. This is why I have not replied to the thousand questions and letters, which have been directed to me. [“The pastor is bound by virtue of his office to exercise the care of souls toward all his parishioners… he is to know his parishioners, prudently correct those who go astray, embrace in his paternal charity the poor and distressed… The pastor much watch with care that nothing contrary to faith and morals be taught in his parish… (Church law – Canons 464-68) “The priest is ordained to offer sacrifice, to bless, to guide, to preach… (Catholic Rite of Ordination) – editor’s note.] The enemy is not asleep, but like a roaring lion. The apostles were not the first to announce the Resurrection. [Because they were hiding in cowardly fear; but after the Ascension of Our Lord they boldly went out and spilled their blood for the Faith – editor’s note.] I abstain from any narration of the above-mentioned facts on account of the length of this letter, and because the Press will most certainly have given its own accounts. I am, yours faithfully, Fr. Manual Marques Ferreira.
["I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd giveth his life for his sheep. But the hireling and he that is not the shepherd, whose own the sheep are not, seeth the wolf coming and leaveth the sheep and flieth: and the wolf casteth and scattereth the sheep, and the hireling flieth, because he is a hireling: and he hath no care for the sheep. (John 10:13-13) This is the model of a true pastor. It's seems that Father Ferreira fell short of his obligations - Editor's note.]
20) This account of the children's detention has been taken from various sources, including contemporary witnesses and Lucia's Memoir I.
21) Lucia and Francisco were not the only ones to observe these phenomena. Lucia's sister, Teresa, returning from Moita with her husband, has told us this: "We were just coming into Fatima when we noticed the air was fresher. The sun looked yellowish mostly, but it was taking on various colors. Looking at my husband, and seeing the colors reflected on the white of his shirt, I said to him, "Maybe we have been wrong all the time." He said to me, "What's that?" and I explained it to him. I said, "Don't you see that everything is like it was six days ago at the Cova da Iria?" When we got as far as the parish church in Fatima, this remarkable thing disappeared. Later we came to know it was just at that time that Our Lady appeared to the children at Valinhos
22) Dr. Formigao had in mind the possible "suggestive" influence of this book.
23) One of the slips which Lucia occasionally makes and which are easily explained, as we have said, by the continual and ceaseless interrogations which everybody considered they had the right to impose.
24) Lucia did not wish to blame her mother who had said: "What does it matter to Our Lady if you can read or not!"
25) See appendix above.
26) Father Lacerda regretfully recognized the same fact: "Jacinta's mother did not receive me with open arms. At my request for permission to question her daughter she hesitated, and only after I had told her that I wanted to tell the soldiers in France about the apparitions of Our Lady did she consent. Senhora Olimpia had every justification for her attitude. So many people had appeared in Aljustrel on the pretence of seeing the children that they no longer knew how to reply. Some people had been there to try and surprise the children into contradictions. The children's father took up the same attitude and reproached us, as priests, for doubting the children's word."
27) "On this occasion," says Maria da Capelinha, "they took the lanterns, the table and the arch for their parody in Santarem. They thought they had taken the tree but they made a mistake and took another." Lucia also refers to the event: "Meanwhile the government did not leave things where they stood. In the place of the apparitions people had put an arch and lanterns which were kept alight. One night some men came in a motor car to tear down the arch and to cut the tree where the apparitions had taken place. In the morning the news spread rapidly and I ran to see if it was true. Imagine my joy when I saw that those wretched men had made a mistake and instead of taking the real tree (which was by then nothing but a small trunk) they had cut one of the saplings nearby. I asked Our Lady to forgive them, and I prayed for their conversion."
28) While mother and daughter were in the waiting room, a certain Dona Maria de Castro, who was a patient of Dr. Lisboa, came to see Jacinta. This lady was a believer in the apparitions of Fatima, and held Jacinta in great esteem, and she at once asked her to pray to Our Lady for her. But Jacinta gave no reply and looked at her so sadly, that Dona Maria went away disheartened. She left a fifty escudo bank note with the little girl, who at once handed it over to the superior of the house, Mother Godinho. The nun, however, did not wish to accept it. "Give it to your mother," she advised Jacinta. "No, it's for you, because I shall give you a lot of trouble." Later Mother Godinho asked Jacinta why she had not replied to Dona Maria when she asked for prayers. "I did pray," was the answer, "but I didn't say so that day because I was afraid of a promise I might not keep. I was in such pain that I was not sure I would remember her request."
29) Is not this an allusion to the Communist invasion (at the time of the Spanish war) by which the nation was menaced; and which the Portuguese Episcopate implored Our Lady to avert from their country? A question: Has the necessary reparation been made? We may note in the first place the intensification of religious life in Portugal, and the characteristic note of penance which marks the Fatima Pilgrimages. We may also cite the walking pilgrimage of 10,000 young men from Lisbon, and the triumphal reception of the statue of Our Lady in the capital (from Dr. Galamba's Jacinta). It will be remembered that the Portuguese bishops led a great national pilgrimage to Fatima to thank Our Lady for deliverance from the Communism which threatened at the time of the Spanish Civil War."
30) One nurse who looked after Jacinta, and whom we had the opportunity to interview, has told us that during this period she purposely stood in the place allegedly occupied by Our Lady at Jacinta's bedside. "She said nothing," the nurse recalled "but there was such an expression of pain on her face that I couldn't endure remaining there any longer."
31) In Portugal not more than twenty-four hours may elapse between death and burial.
32) Senhor Almeida later wrote: 'I seem to see Jacinta still, looking like a little angel. In her coffin she seemed to be alive - her lips and cheeks were a beautiful pink. I have seen many corpses, large and small, but I have never seen anything like that. The beautiful perfume which the body exhaled could not be explained naturally, and the hardest skeptic could not doubt it. One remembers the smell which so often makes it repugnant to remain near a corpse and yet this child had been dead three days and a half, and the smell of her body was like a bouquet of flowers...."
33) Senhor Julio Lopes, who was at that time secretary to Arthur Santos, confided to us: "As the rumor of the proposed pilgrimage began to spread around, Arthur exclaimed: 'I must put a stop to' this ridiculous fairy tale!' I replied: 'You won't be able to do anything!' He then said: 'Not a soul shall get in there; they can't do anything against brute force!"
34) The Secret, See appendix above.
35) A promise made collectively by the bishops of Portugal to Our Lady to organize a national pilgrimage to Fatima to ward off the threat of Communism to their country.
36) A Letter From Lucia, See appendix above.
37) Lucia does not remember the exact date on which this message was delivered to the Holy Father but recalls that her confessor told her that it had been graciously received and would be taken into consideration.