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Francisco prayed many rosaries

Voices Aug 1, 2017

The children of Fatima, Lucia Santos, Francisco Marto and his sister, Jacinto Marto, were granted visions of an angel and Our Lady in 1916 and 1917. The children, in obedience to Our Lady, said many rosaries while tending their sheep before Francisco and Jacinta died a few years later. (Wikipedia)

One of the most significant events during the age of Mary (1830-1954) was the apparition of Our Lady in Fatima in 1917. This year is the 100th anniversary of Our Lady's appearances in Fatima and two of the seers, Francisco Marto (1908 – 1919) and Jacinta Marto 1910 – 1920), were canonized May 13.

Another seer, Lucia Santos (1907 – 2005), wrote about Francisco: "Francisco didn't seem to be the brother of Jacinta other than in facial features and in the practice of virtue. He was not capricious and vivacious like her. On the contrary, he had a submissive and complaisant temperament."

If some children tried to get his belongings, Francisco would say, "Let them. I don't care." Lucia observed if Francisco had grown to be a man, his chief defect would have been, "Don't bother about it."

Francisco and his sister Jacinta would go to pasture the flock with their cousin Lucia. The children loved to play and dance. They had been recommended to pray the rosary after lunch, but as they wanted more time for their games, they invented a way of finishing it quickly. Lucia wrote, "We just ran the beads through our fingers with only the words 'Hail Mary, Hail Mary.' At the end of each ten, we very slowly said two words: 'Our Father.' And so, in the twinkling of an eye, as the saying goes, we had our rosary finished."

During the first apparition of Our Lady on May 13, 1917, Lucia asked Our Lady would the three of them go to heaven. Our Lady said they would go to heaven, but Francisco must say many rosaries. The children obeyed Our Lady and prayed the rosary well.

During the apparitions of the angel in 1916 and the apparitions of Our Lady in 1917, Lucia would talk to Our Lady and the angel. Jacinta could see and hear the apparitions but did not talk. Francisco could see the apparitions but could not hear anything.

After the apparitions of the angel, the children felt the effect of the supernatural and had little strength for anything else. Francisco said, "I would like very much to see the angel, but the worst of it is that afterwards we can't do anything. I couldn't even walk. I don't know what was that matter with me."

The apparitions of Our Lady produced peace and gladness in the hearts of the children and the effect was more gentle than that of the angel. After Lucia and Jacinta told Francisco about the contents of the May 13 apparition, Francisco crossed his hands over his chest and said, "Oh! Our Lady of mine, I will pray as many rosaries as you want."

Lucia recalled: "And from then on, he would go apart from us as though he was taking a walk. If I called him and asked what he was doing, he raised his hand holding his rosary. If I invited him to come and play, saying he could pray the rosary with us, he answered, 'Later I will pray it again. Don't you remember what our Lady told me? I have to pray many rosaries!'"

Comparing the apparitions of Our Lady with those of the angel, Francisco said, "I liked very much seeing the angel, but I liked even more seeing Our Lady. What I liked most of all was seeing Our Lord in that light Our Lady put into our breasts. I love God so much! But he is so sad because of all the sins! We must never commit any sins!"


方濟多唸玫瑰經                                                                                        

 「瑪利亞年代 (1830 - 1954)」其中最觸目的事情之一,就是一九一七年聖母在花地瑪的顯現。今年正好是花地瑪聖母顯現的一百週年紀念,同時亦是事件中兩位神視者於五月十三日被教廷宣聖的喜慶事;他們是聖方濟.馬圖 (1908.06.11 - 1919.04.04) 及聖雅仙達.馬圖 (1910.03.11 - 1920.02.20) 兄妹。

 另一位神視者路濟亞.珊圖仙 (1907.03.28 - 2005.02.13) 記述方濟如下:「除了外貌及修德外,方濟與雅仙達不像兄妹。方濟不像雅仙達任性和活潑,相反,他有謙讓和順的氣質。」如果有人要攫取他的東西,他會說『由他們吧。反正我不打緊』。路濟亞曾想若他日後長大後,最大的問題是『每事都不打緊』!

 方濟及雅仙達兄妹常跟隨表姊路濟亞牧羊,他們喜歡一起玩耍和跳舞。長輩們曾建議他們午點很唸玫瑰經,他們卻為了多些唱遊時間,發明了一種縮短誦唸的方式:手拿唸珠,每顆珠以「萬福瑪利亞」代替整遍聖母經,以慢拍唸出「我們的天父」代替整遍天主經。如此,瞬眼間,他們便把玫瑰經唸完了。

 一九一七年五月十三日聖母首次的顯現,路濟亞問聖母他們三人能否升天堂,聖母的答覆是肯定的,但方濟必需多唸玫瑰經。孩子們都聽從聖母,並好好地唸玫瑰經。

 一九一六年天使的顯現,及一九一七年聖母的顯現,路濟亞都能與兩位對話,但雅仙達見到並聽到兩位,但沒有對他們說話,而方濟只看見兩位,卻什麼都聽不到。

 天使顯現後,孩子們均感到超常的神效,每事都沒有力量去做。方濟說過:「我真願見到天使,糟糕的是,見到了後,我們什麼都不能做。我連行路也不能。我真的不明所以。」

聖母的顯現帶給孩子們內心的平安和喜悅,影響較天使顯現後感到更柔和。路濟亞和雅仙達把五月十三日顯現的內容向方濟說明後,將雙手交叉放在胸前,說:「噢!我的聖母!妳要我誦唸多少玫瑰經我都會誦唸。」路濟亞追憶道:「自此,方濟常離去,獨自漫步;我問他往那裡,他總會把拿著唸珠的手舉起作答覆。如果我邀請他一起遊玩,然後和我們一起唸玫瑰經,他會說『遲些我會再唸玫瑰經。妳不記得聖母告訴我,要唸很多玫瑰經嗎?』」

 比較聖母和天使的顯現,方濟說:「我很喜歡見到天使,但我更喜歡見到聖母:我最喜歡見到吾主於聖母於進我們心胸的光中。我真的很愛天主啊!但是,因為所有的罪,祂很傷心!我們必需永不犯罪!」