It has been one crazy month! And here I am, writing my heart away. I can’t even begin to explain what happened because time just flew by.
Come Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful and kindle in them the fire of your love. Send forth your Spirit and they shall be created. And You shall renew the face of the earth.
It was difficult for me to write about what happened this month because for me, writing about it means “it ended”, “it’s done”, “it’s over”. Oh how I wish I could go back in time! However, after reflecting upon the last few weeks, I can’t help but feel so blessed, so loved, and so joyful. God is so good!
I have been blessed to have been able to join a pilgrimage to Fatima for the 100th anniversary of the Apparition of Our Lady! It really was a memorable experience and I will always cherish the people I’ve encountered, the joy I’ve felt, and the desire to live life anew. It is not enough for me to put my experience into words, but to actually start living it. Living holy is to live life.
Let me begin by emphasizing three key points I have learned:
1. “Do not be afraid.”
The first apparition of the angel to the three children at Fatima began with the words, “Do not be afraid.” How fitting it is today to say those words and to mean it. Do not be afraid! In our lives, there are multiple instances where we are afraid. It’s the human thing to do, but we must remember that trusting the Lord means fully surrendering ourselves to Him even if we might be afraid. Do not be afraid to live like Christ and to share Christ to others!
2. “…You will have a great deal to suffer, but the grace of God will be with you and will strengthen you.”
I am reminded by what my dad once told me: “If it was easy, everyone would do it.” Living like Christ is not an easy thing to do! We are reminded by Our Lady that offering ourselves to God involves suffering. Being Catholic does not entitle you to a stress-free, always-deserving-of-blessings kind of life. It does, however, entitle you to a joyful, spirit-filled, meaningful life. Suffering is part of life and we must always remember that it is when we are suffering that we are closest to Jesus. We must never lose hope in Jesus. Jesus, I believe, I adore, I hope and I love You. I ask pardon for those who do not believe, who do not adore, who do not hope, and do not love You.
3. Pray the Rosary everyday.
It was a great privilege to meet Blessed Lucia’s niece – Maria dos Anjos. Joy radiates within her! She kissed and hugged me! We didn’t really get to talk, but just being in the same room as her had left me feeling like I need more. What was her secret? The rosary! She once said in an interview that her aunt (Lucia) would really stress that she prays the rosary, but being young at the time, she would always say it is tiring to pray the rosary.
Blessed Lucia said something that resonated with me, “Pray the rosary. Start it. Even if you do not finish praying, Our Lady will finish it for you.” The key message of Fatima is the rosary. I believe that it is one of the most powerful prayer out there and it can save so many souls that have not been prayed for. Want to start living like Christ? Pray the rosary. It’s powerful.
O, God, who by the light of the Holy Spirit, did instruct the hearts of the faithful, grant that by the same Holy Spirit we may be truly wise and ever enjoy His consolations, Through Christ Our Lord, Amen.
The last thing I wanted to leave behind with you is this: I am not perfect. I will struggle. I will fall. I will doubt. Know that, if I have you, I will never lose hope. I believe that the people around us make us the better versions of ourselves. So surround yourselves with people who make you the best version of yourself.
Originally posted in cfcsflcalgary.org/fatima/