Catholic Dictionary

Term

FÁTIMA, OUR LADY OF THE ROSARY OF

Definition

Shrine of the Blessed Virgin Mary in the mountain region of central Portugal near Cova da Iria. It was the scene of six apparitions of Our Lady, from May 13 to October 13, 1917, to three peasant children, Lucia Santos, Jacinta Marto, and her brother Francisco. During the apparitions Mary told the children to have processions in honor of her Immaculate Conception and to tell the faithful to do penance and pray the Rosary because otherwise the world would be chastised for its sins. During the October apparition seventy thousand people witnessed a spectacular solar phenomenon. In 1930 the bishops of Portugal declared the apparitions to be authentic, and in 1942 Pope Pius XII, in response to Mary's request, consecrated the world to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. In 1967 Pope Paul VI personally visited and worshipped at the shrine on the fiftieth anniversary of the apparitions.