Open Letter to the Pope
Cost 250 Million Lire
The initiative, from which the Vatican keeps its distance, intends to promote the "Consecration of Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary as a premise for peace in the world."
Two pages of advertising in a Roman daily newspaper to ask Wojtyla to reveal the secret of Fatima.
ROME — If they had not bought two entire pages of a Roman daily newspaper, in order to publish an "Open Letter" to Pope Wojtyla, few would know of the existence of the "Fatima Center". On the contrary, as we know, "the ways of the Lord are infinite," and that public notice did not pass by unobserved.
Also, because the Fatima Center had paid some 250 million lire in order to communicate to the Pontiff the intention to convoke a conference, the third one, of all the bishops in the world, and to ask him to reveal the Third Secret of Fatima. The principal objective of the initiative is "to promote the Consecration of Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, according to all the details established in the Message of Fatima."
In Her first apparition, 78 years ago, the Blessed Virgin revealed that "only by means of the solemn Consecration of Russia on the part of all the Catholic bishops together with the Holy Father on the same day, at the same hour, would the world attain true peace."
Promoter of the operation "Open Letter" is an American priest, Father Nicholas Gruner, head of the Fatima Center who, joining in a community of prayer of more than 500,000 persons, represents one of the largest Apostolates now in existence. (The principal headquarters of the community of "Friends of Fatima" is at Constable in the United States. In Italy, on the contrary, the Center has headquarters in the town of Oricola, a small community in the province of Aquila.) Father Gruner was the organizer of the last conference of bishops, dedicated to peace and to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, which was held last November in Mexico, at the Sanctuary of Our Lady of Guadalupe.
According to what we read in the document which appeared yesterday, at the time of the Mexican Conference, "Vatican bureaucrats attempted to discourage, through letters and phone calls, the participation of bishops and nuncios at that meeting, suggesting its unlawfulness, and advancing serious doubt concerning the canonical status of Father Gruner and his loyalty and dedication to His Holiness."
"Notwithstanding that ‘boycotting' — we read further in the letter — the meeting however took place and the delegates who took part in it drew up an ‘historical’ document: 14 Resolutions affirming the crucial role Our Lady of Fatima plays in the process towards peace and the mystery of our salvation."
The signers of the pages published yesterday say they opted for this bizarre form of "correspondence" to "avoid being accused of planning in secret or not seeking proper authorization" and they ask John Paul II "to want to grant the Papal Blessing on the meeting, which will take place in Rome, and to take part in one or more of its sessions."
The singular initiative, however, (from which the Vatican distances itself, with a significant no comment) was signed by Madang, (Papua, New Guinea) Archbishop Benedict To Varpin, by Bishop Anthony Sanusi, of the Nigerian diocese of Ijebu-Ode, by three North American Priests and by 9,000 lay persons from the whole world.