Circular Letter No. 10 / 2011
October 30, 2011
Dear Brothers and Sisters in the MMP,
October is marked by three particularly significant feasts: the feast of the Holy Rosary on October 7, the anniversary of the last apparition at Fatima on October 13, and the first observance of the feast of Blessed John Paul II on October 22. All of them are celebrations of Our Lady’s triumph.
The Feast of the Holy Rosary (October 7)
The feast of the Holy Rosary recalls the decisive victory of the Catholic naval forces against the mighty Turkish fleet (Muslim force) on October 7, 1571. Known as the Battle of Lepanto, it prevented the Islamic invasion of Europe. Seeing the distinct material disadvantage of the Catholic forces, St. Pius V called for all of Europe to pray the rosary for victory.
Our Lady cites this battle as “one of my victories obtained through the powerful weapon of the holy rosary” (Message 434 a) and by public invocation of her name: “My name was inscribed upon their banners and shouted out by the soldiers, and thus through my intercession, there took place the miracle of this victory which saved the Christian world from its destruction.” (Message 456 c).
On this feast, Our Lady encourages us more to pray the Rosary and multiply the cenacles of prayer. “I am truly present in these cenacles, and I am joining in your prayer. By this prayer, you offer your heavenly Mother a powerful force of intervening for the salvation of my poor straying children and in disposing the painful events of your time according to the motherly plan of my Immaculate Heart. . . Everything can still be changed if you, my children, listen to my voice and unite yourselves, through prayer, with the unceasing intercession of your heavenly Mother.” (Message 184 b-c, g)
The Anniversary of the Last Apparition at Fatima (October 13)
Among the apparitions of Our Lady at Fatima, which occurred on the 13th day of six consecutive months in 1917, starting on May 13, the last apparition on October 13 was the most spectacular. It was known as the “Miracle of the Sun.” The sun appeared unexpectedly after an incessant rain, whirling exceedingly fast in incredible movements, at times appearing to be loosened from the sky and at times approaching the earth. Radiating in varying colors, it could be looked upon without hurting the eyes. The phenomenon was witnessed by an approximately 70,000 people, including newspaper reporters and photographers, and could be seen as far as forty kilometers away. No scientifically verifiable physical cause could be adduced to support the phenomenon. It was indeed a miracle.
“You call it the miracle of the sun” (Message 137 a), Our Lady said, then interprets it. “Even the sun, like all the beings in creation, behaves in obedience to the laws of God. Through this miracle, I have desired to indicate to you that my victory will consist in leading men back to a docile obedience to the Will of our God. But the sun is the source of light. . . I have thus wanted to indicate to you that my victory will consist, especially, in making the light shine again upon the world and the Church. The world will be enlightened anew because it will offer itself completely to the adoration and the glorification of God. In the Church, once the darkness of error, infidelity and sin has been entirely dissipated, the light of truth, of grace and of holiness will shine forth once again. Jesus will be so resplendent in the life of the Church, that she herself will be the very greatest light for all nations of the earth” (Message 137 d-h).
Musing on this great marvel, she indicates further that the miracle of the sun is being repeated everyday, particularly for her children (Message 137 i) who are consecrated to her and living in her own spirit (Message 172 i): “Everyday, I repeat it for each one of you. When I lead you along the pathway of my Son, when I help you to be healed of sin, when I lead you to prayer, and when I form you to holiness, it is the light of this sun that I cause to shine ever more brightly in your souls and your lives: the sun of my Son Jesus” (Message 137 k).
Our celebration of the last apparition at Fatima gives greater appreciation to our consecration and deeper commitment to live it everyday. Let us continue in leading more people to consecrate themselves to the Immaculate Heart of our Blessed Mother, so that they too may experience the privilege of being her children.
The First Observance of the Feast of Blessed John Paul II (October 22)
Barely five months after John Paul II was beatified last May 1 this year, the Church had its first celebration of his feast day last October 22. The feast coincides with the date of his installation as Roman Pontiff in 1978. The Church admits that his “great fame of sanctity” expedited the process of his beatification, in what some have called “record time.”
For John Paul II to be widely acclaimed with great holiness is not at all surprising. Our Lady describes him as the Pope who has been formed in the depths of her Immaculate Heart (Message 385 d). His total consecration to Our Lady, well expressed in his papal motto (Totus Tuus), is a defining factor for his sainthood. Likewise, he is known as the Pope of Our Lady’s triumph, having been saved from the assassination attempt in 1981. As if by coincidence, the bloody attempt happened on the 13th of May, the anniversary of first apparition at Fatima, giving deeper reason for Our Lady’s motherly and extra-ordinary protection on him and confirming him as “the pope of my secret” (Message 449).
As we remember Blessed John Paul II, let us make his Totus Tuus our own and be inspired to live faithfully our consecration. With his intercession, let us also keep our commitment to stay united with Pope Benedict XVI, his predecessor, in humble prayer and in filial obedience.
1. New Tagalog Translation of Consecration Prayer
I am happy to inform you of the New Tagalog Translation of Consecration (for Laity and Religious). This is now the official text to be used by Tagalog speaking groups.
Panalangin ng Pagpapaubaya sa Kalinis-linisang Puso ni Maria
Birhen ng Fatima, * Ina ng Awa, * Reyna ng langit at lupa, * Sandigan ng mga makasalanan, * kami na kabilang sa Marian Movement of Priests * ay bukod tanging nagpapaubaya ng sarili * sa Iyong Kalinis-linisang Puso.
Sa pamamagitan ng pagpapaubayang ito, * nais naming gampanan, * kasama mo at sa pamamagitan mo, * ang lahat ng aming pananagutan * bilang mga binyagan. * Ipinangangako namin * na sumailalim sa proseso ng pagbabalik-loob * na magpapalaya sa amin * sa mga pansariling hangarin at pakiki-uso sa mundo; * upang tulad mo, * bukod tangi naming mailaan ang aming sarili * na sundin ang Kalooban ng Ama tuwina.
O Inang pinakamatimyas at pinakamaawain, * buo ang loob namin * na ipaubaya ang aming buhay sa iyo. * Bilang mga Kristiyano, * ituon mo kami sa hangarin mong maligtas ang lahat. * Sa bigat ng dinadala ng mundo ngayon, * seryosong desisyon ang hinihingi ng pagkakataon. * Dahil dito, * lakas-loob kaming nagpapasya * na mamuhay ayon sa iyong mga hinahangad, * lalong-lalo na * ang maalab na pagdarasal at pagpapakasakit, * ang taimtim na pakikiisa sa Banal na Eukaristiya at pagkakawang-gawa, * ang pagdarasal ng rosaryo araw-araw, * gayon din ang simpleng pamumuhay * na magsisilbing huwaran para sa lahat * sa pagtalima sa Utos ng Diyos * at sa pagpapakabanal * lalo na sa kalinisan.
Nangangako rin kami * na maging kaisa ng Sto. Papa sa kanyang pamununo * kasama ang mga obispo at mga pari. * Malaking banta * ang laganap na pagsiphayo sa Kautusan at Aral ng Simbahan, * na siyang pinakasaligan nito. * Para hadlangan ito, * kailangang-kailangan naming magkaisa * sa pagdarasal at pagmamahal sa Sto. Papa. * Sa iyong pangangalaga, * siya ay aming ipinauubaya. * Kami nawa’y maging mga apostol ng pagkakaisa.
Sa wakas, * ipinangangako namin, * sa abot ng aming makakaya, * na akayin ang sinumang makaugnayan * sa panibago at malalim na debosyon sa iyo.
Batid ang matinding pagtamlay ng pananampalataya dulot ng ateismo, * batid rin ang kalapastanganang nagaganap maging sa loob ng santuwaryo, * at batid ang walang patumanggang paglaganap ng kasamaan at kasalanan sa mundo, * lakas-loob at buong pagtitiwala naming itinataas ang aming pagtingin sa iyo, * mahal na Ina ni Hesus at Ina naming maawain at makapangyarihan. * Ngayon, * muli naming inaangkin ang aming kaligtasan. * Kaming iyong mga anak ay labis na umaasa sa iyo, * O mahabagin, * O mapagmahal, * O masintahing Birheng Maria.
2. Third Quarter Formation
The Third Quarter Formation for the Laity was successfully held this October. To accommodate participants from other areas, the whole day recollection was done in two separate dates and venues. The first was held last October 8 at the Parish of Our Lady of Unity, United Paranaque Subdivision 5, Sucat, Paranaque with 110 participants.
The second was at Sta. Maria della Strada Parish on Katipunan Ave., Quezon City last October 15 with 230 attendees. The topics discussed were the Powers and Privileges of Mary, the Marian Dogmas and the much awaited Fifth Dogma. We thank the cenacle group hosts in the parishes of Our Lady of Unity and Sta. Maria della Strada for their accommodation.
The last quarter formation for this year will be held on December 10 at the Lay Formation Center, San Carlos Seminary Complex in Makati City. The whole day activity will serve as the recollection for the Advent season. We are inviting all the cenacle groups to attend.
3. Day with Mary
Coinciding with the formation in Quezon City last October 15, the Laguna-Batangas cenacle groups held their Day with Mary in Nagcarlan, Laguna. Due to the conflict in schedules, I missed this annual gathering. This cluster in Laguna-Batangas area has consistently been moving fast and far in spreading the cenacle.
Having the most number of cenacle groups, I would imagine a much greater number of people in this year’s celebration.
I would like to greet Sis. Nini and Bro. Boy, the couple-coordinator of the Laguna-Batangas cluster, and their cenacle groups, for their tireless effort and devotion in carrying out the work of Our Lady in their areas.
4. Lay Promoters’ Retreat in Cebu
The last activity this October was the Lay Promoters’ Retreat in Cebu last October 21 - 23. The opening Mass was presided by Fr. Nonoy Palarca, the MMP Priest-Responsible for Cebu, with three priests concelebrating. Representatives from Cebu and Butuan attended.
God bless you all.
Yours in the Immaculate Heart,
REV. FR. ROMERICO A. PRIETO
Marian Movement of Priests - Philippines