Last Unrestricted Interview
What follows is the edited transcript of a talk on October 9, 2006, given by noted Fatima expert Father Nicholas Gruner to hundreds of bishops, priests and laypeople listening to the Last Chance for World Peace conference. In his talk, Father Gruner gives an account of Father Augustine Fuentes’ famous interview with Sister Lucy, the last surviving seer of Fatima, on December 26, 1957. It was in this historic interview that Sister Lucy said “Our Lady is sad because no one pays attention to Her Message.”
by Father Nicholas Gruner, S.T.L., S.T.D. (Cand.)
Today I want to share with you some thoughts about the historic meeting between Sister Lucy and Father Augustine Fuentes in December of 1957. It was in this prophetic interview that the core of the Secret of Fatima was released, at least in part.
Father Fuentes was a Mexican priest who was appointed as the postulator of the cause for the beatification of Jacinta and Francisco Marto. He had already met Sister Lucy on the 10th of August 1955. He had other opportunities to meet with her, and did so again on December 26, 1957. After that meeting he gave a talk on the 22nd of May 1958 in the motherhouse of the Missionary Sisters of the Sacred Heart and Our Lady of Guadalupe. During this talk Father Fuentes repeated the words Sister Lucy spoke to him the previous December. Then the talk was published. Father Alonso tells us that Father Fuentes’ talk was published with every guarantee of authenticity, and with due episcopal approval, including that of the Bishop of Leiria, which is the diocese in which Fatima is located.
Father Fuentes made it very clear that the message of which he spoke was received by him from the very lips of Sister Lucy, the principal seer of Fatima. Here are some translated excerpts from the original Spanish text by Father Fuentes.
The Most Holy Virgin is Very Sad!
First we have Father Fuentes: “I wish only to tell you about the last conversation which I had with Sister Lucy on the 26th of December last year. I met her in her convent. She was very sad, very pale and emaciated. She said to me, ‘Father, the Most Holy Virgin is very sad because no one has paid any attention to Her Message, neither the good nor the bad. The good continue on their way but without giving any importance to Her Message. The bad, not seeing the punishment of God actually falling upon them, continue their life of sin without even caring about the message. But believe me Father, God will chastise the world and this will be in a terrible manner. The punishment from Heaven is imminent.’”
That’s how the interview starts. Remember, these words were spoken in 1957, December 26th. This was before Sister Lucy was totally silenced for the last forty-five years of her life. However, even by then interviews with Sister Lucy had become rarer and rarer. The (previously) widely known visit with Sister Lucy was with Father Lombardi, the well-known Jesuit founder of the Better World Movement. By 1960 however, even her old confessor — another Jesuit who had confessed her and directed her for about ten years in the 30's and 40's — when he came back from Brazil in 1960, was unable to see Sister Lucy.
Sister Lucy Cut-off in 1960
Permission to see Sister Lucy had to be granted not by the Bishop of Fatima, not by the Bishop of Coimbra, but by the Cardinal Prefect of the Holy Office or by the Pope himself. And so this interview with Father Fuentes was perhaps the last unrestricted interview with Sister Lucy that was ever published.
I am aware, of course, that other interviews have been published which claim to be giving us Sister Lucy’s words. In a chapter in The Devil’s Final Battle, Christopher Ferrara has pointed out the lack of credibility of what purports to be an interview given in 2001. Mr. Ferrara says that the report of this interview is hardly believable; and there are many glaring omissions.
But that is a matter for another talk. I want to focus today on the 1957 interview with Father Fuentes. This interview is very prophetic and I consider it the last unvarnished, unretouched interview that Sister Lucy ever gave.
Why is She Sad?
Sister Lucy said “Our Lady is very sad.” Why is She sad? She is sad “because no one pays attention to Her message, neither the good nor the bad.”
It’s understandable that the bad pay no attention. After all, why would sinners — those who are hardened in sin — care about the things of God? But what is remarkable here is that Sister Lucy says neither do the good pay any attention to Our Lady’s Message.
Even more surprising, as we look back today from the perspective of nearly fifty years, is that Sister Lucy said the punishment of God is imminent. She said this even though in 1957 we had not long before come through the Second World War and another major war in Korea.
The Worst Punishment
What, then, is this punishment Sister Lucy spoke of? She alludes to it later on in the conversation, but it takes the eyes of faith to see it. By that I do not mean faith in Our Lady’s Message, but rather understanding Her Message from the perspective of the Catholic Faith.
That perspective is given by St. John Eudes quoting Sacred Scripture. Jeremiah tells us, speaking in God’s name: “Return, O ye revolting children, saith the Lord... And I will give you pastors according to My own heart, and they shall feed you with knowledge and doctrine.” (Jeremiah 3:14-15)
St. John Eudes deduces from this passage that if you don’t turn back to God, then God will send you pastors who are just pastors in name — pastors who are really wolves in sheep’s clothing. He goes on to say that when God is particularly angry with His people, He sends them bad pastors. It is the worst chastisement He can give!
This, I believe, is the punishment Sister Lucy is talking about. She alludes to this in the next part of her statement. “Sister Lucy also told me,” Father Fuentes says, “Father, the devil is in the mood for engaging in a decisive battle against the Blessed Virgin. And the devil knows what it is that most offends God and which in a short space of time will gain for him the greatest number of souls. Thus the devil does everything to overcome souls consecrated to God because in this way, the devil will succeed in leaving the souls of the faithful abandoned by their leaders, thereby the more easily will he seize them.”
Remember, Sister Lucy said this in 1957. In 1965 there were 455,000 Catholic priests. By 1975 there were only 400,000. 55,000 priests — a bit more than one ninth — had left the ministry in just ten years. Such a decline in the number of priests had never been seen before in the history of the Church.
Even to this day, according to the most recent statistics published by L’Osservatore Romano, the highest number of priests remaining in the Church is just over 406,000. And, for example, the average age of priests today in the USA, instead of being somewhere in the forties, is in the sixties.
Although the number of priests is in decline, the population of lay people who — even though less well instructed and practicing — consider themselves Catholics is increasing. These souls have fewer and fewer priests, per thousand, to teach and shepherd them. And the ratio of priests to lay people will become significantly lower still in the next ten years, as the natural attrition of death overtakes many of the priests now in their sixties, seventies and eighties.
We Must Proclaim Fatima
So the devil’s plan is outlined here by Sister Lucy. I believe it’s in the Secret itself because almost everything in this interview refers to the Secret. To know why I say this, I refer you to the book The Third Secret by Frère Michel. It was Frère Michel himself who alerted me to Father Fuentes’ interview with Sister Lucy. This was in 1985 when we had a conference for bishops in Vatican City itself on the day of the opening of the extraordinary synod in November 1985. We had about two hundred priests and bishops in attendance, including His Beatitude Giacomo Beltritti, the Catholic Patriarch of the Latin rite, in Jerusalem. He told me “Continue in your way to speak publicly. I will continue in my way to speak through private channels.” He has since gone to his reward, God bless him. But it has been my conviction from the beginning that since Fatima has been obstructed from being obeyed by being deviously opposed when the subject is broached only through private channels, that is why we must continue to speak out publicly.
Many Nations will Disappear
Sister Lucy asks Father Fuentes, “How much time is there before 1960 arrives? It will be very sad for everyone. Not one person will rejoice at all if beforehand the world does not pray and do penance. I’m not able to give any other details because it is still a secret. According to the will of the Most Holy Virgin, only the Holy Father and the Bishop of Fatima are permitted to know the Secret, but they have chosen not to know it so that they would not be influenced. This is the third part of the Message of Our Lady which will remain secret until 1960.”
She continues, “Tell them Father, that many times the Most Holy Virgin told my cousins, Francisco and Jacinta, as well as myself, that many nations will disappear from the face of the earth. She said that Russia will be the instrument of chastisement chosen by Heaven to punish the whole world if we do not beforehand obtain the conversion of that poor nation.”
The only way to obtain the conversion of that poor nation is to consecrate it, because it is “by this means” — the Consecration of Russia — that Russia will be saved. There is no other means.
Each of Us Must Choose
So we are faced with a choice. We may think we have other choices but we only have one choice. We can either obey Our Lady of Fatima or not obey Her. We cannot not obey Her on the pretext that we don’t really know what She wants. That’s simply not true. Nor can we not obey Her on the pretext that we don’t have to do so because it is a “private revelation”. That also is not true. But we can just not obey Her because we choose not to obey Her and we are quite honest about it. But still it’s the same choice to not obey Her.
In the alternative, we can obey Her and obtain the blessings Our Lady promised. To not obey Her is to obtain the Fatima curse. We will be cursed, and we have been cursed up to now, by not obeying Her. And the curse will only get worse until such time as finally those who survive will say “That generation that ignored Our Lady — we will not make their mistake. We will finally obey. We will get the benefit.”
This generation has been chosen to be either blessed or cursed by Fatima. We have no other choice. We didn’t choose to be born in this generation but we are here and the choice is ours.
It’s not left to the person next to you, somebody with a higher rank, or somebody who claims to be more devoted than you. The choice is ultimately your own and you will be held responsible for it.
Russia Will Be
the Instrument of Chastisement
In the Old Testament, we are told that Jeremiah predicted the fall of Jerusalem. The priests at that time said, “God will not let the Babylonians take Jerusalem, because Jerusalem is the Holy City; it has the promise.”
And there are Catholics today who say we have “the promise of Our Lord; the gates of hell will not prevail against the Church”. So God will not allow the Church to be driven underground. God will not allow the Pope to be killed.
Even though the present Pope has revealed the vision of Fatima, what he doesn’t tell you is, or what he misunderstands is, that it is a vision of a Pope in the future, quite likely himself. It is not a vision of the attempted killing of the Pope in 1981. It is a vision of a future Pope being killed.
I have been working on the Message of Fatima for twenty-nine years. I have been accused of being against the Pope, but the truth is I am the Pope’s best friend! I am trying to save his neck, literally. But I am afraid that I will not be heard well enough or clearly enough. One priest — neither I nor any other — cannot do it by himself. We need other priests to pass on the Message, to explain the Message and to help save the neck of the Pope and the bishops.
Will We End Like the King of France?
We were told by Our Lord at Rianjo, “Make it known to My ministers, given they follow the example of the King of France in delaying the execution of My command, like him (the King of France) they will fall into misfortune.”
The “King of France” refers to the kings from 1689 to 1789. On the 17th of June 1689, the Sacred Heart commanded the King of France to consecrate his country to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. But the kings of France followed the advice of their confessors — they happened to be Jesuits also — and did not obey.
What happened to the Jesuits is that in 1759 they were suppressed by the Pope himself. And thirty years later, on the 17th of June — one hundred years to the day after Our Lord’s warning — the King of France was stripped of his authority to legislate by the upstart Third Estate. About three weeks later he was imprisoned, and four years after that he was executed by the soldiers of the revolution as if he were a criminal.
Our Lord is telling the bishops and the Pope and — to a lesser extent but nonetheless true — the priests, “given that they follow the example of the King of France in delaying the execution of My command, like him they will fall into misfortune.”
We may have the illusion that we are in charge. I sometimes have the illusion that I am in charge of my little apostolate, but the fact is things happen over which I have no control. I’m sure you might find that same experience in your dioceses. I’m sure the Pope has the same experience in the Church. Ultimately God is in control and He will have His way, with or without our co-operation.
Russia is the instrument of chastisement chosen by Heaven to punish the whole world for its sins.
Pope Pius XII tells us, in his encyclical Evangelii Praecones (June 2, 1951), “The world today is worse now than before the flood.” If, as is surely the case, it is worse now than it was in 1951, what would he say of us today?
In 1951 abortion was not legalized, at least NOT in the West. Today of course we have the holocaust of abortion with fifty million dead every year. The world is much worse today than before 1951, and much worse still than before the flood.
Modernism Attacks the Clergy
The chastisement that has been visited upon us shows that the devil has had his chance and has succeeded. He has succeeded not only with those 55,000 priests that have left the ministry, but with all those who have bought into the modernist interpretation of the Scriptures, Liturgy and even Dogma — and the modernist interpretation of Fatima.
I must confess that when I read St. Pius X’s encyclical on modernism (Pascendi Dominici Gregis, 1907) I was very frightened. I was flying from London back to Canada to enter the seminary, when I read in his encyclical some of the devious and devilish tricks that the modernists use.
One of these terrible tricks is to redefine Catholic terms. When they use the word “transubstantiation” or “magisterium” or any other Catholic word, they apply a new meaning to that word, but they don’t do you the favor or have the honesty of telling you they have redefined the term. They just use it over and over and over again, and eventually you come to redefine the term in your own mind and you stop thinking like a Catholic.
I said to myself, who possibly could overcome such a trick? Pope Leo XIII, writing in his encyclical on Bible studies Providentissimus Deus, said Biblical scholars must be grounded in Catholic dogma, because if they are not, they will simply end up by “imbibing the labored erudition of the rationalists”.
I would say the same things to our philosophers and theologians. Whether they be Scripture scholars, dogmatic scholars or moral scholars, if they are not well grounded in the solemn definitions of the Catholic Church, in the sense that they are always intended, then they may well end up accepting the distorted thinking of the rationalists.
Modernism Attacks Fatima
We see that before our very eyes. Modernism — which also spouts the labored erudition of the rationalists — is being used to attack Fatima, to redefine Fatima in other terms.
I have learned the first rule of Scripture scholarship from St. Augustine, who says you must understand the Scriptures in their literal sense first of all, unless it is contrary to the faith or contrary to right reason, otherwise that is the first rule of interpretation. That is also the method I use for interpreting the Message of Fatima. It has never failed me so far, and confirms my belief that the Fatima prophecies are to be taken literally, not in some metaphorical or symbolic sense.
When Our Lady showed the child seers the vision of hell, the children understood it. After all, if you’ve ever seen hell, which I have never done, you would understand what is going on. Nevertheless the Blessed Virgin then explained, “you have seen hell, where the souls of poor sinners go”. She explains everything. The children of Fatima are not the only ones who need to have things explained. If we are really going to understand Fatima, we have to be, Our Lord said, “as children”.
Souls Dragged to Hell by Bad Clergy
So Sister Lucy explains to us what this imminent punishment is. “That which afflicts the Immaculate Heart of Mary and the (Sacred) Heart of Jesus is the fall of religious and priestly souls. The devil knows that religious and priests who fall away from their beautiful vocation drag numerous souls to hell.”
“The devil wishes to take possession of consecrated souls. He tries to corrupt them in order to lull to sleep the souls of lay people and thereby lead them to final impenitence. He employs all tricks, even going so far as to suggest the delay of entrance into religious life.
“Resulting from this is the sterility of the interior life, and among the lay people, coldness (lack of enthusiasm) regarding the subject of renouncing pleasures and the total dedication of themselves to God.”
We see that our Catholic Faith has become comfortable, that the cross is no longer there, that we no longer have to make any sacrifices.
One person told me, “I really don’t like this brand of Catholicism because it doesn’t please me, so I just put it aside.” They think they can pick and choose. I’ve had people tell me they go to Confessor A and, if he tells them something they don’t want to hear, they go to Confessor B, because they know he is going to be much softer. God is not going to be mocked.
Sister Lucy goes on to give us a solution. “Tell them also, Father, that my cousins Francisco and Jacinta sacrificed themselves because in all the apparitions of the Most Holy Virgin, they always saw Her very sad. She never smiled at us. This sadness, this anguish which we noted in Her, penetrated our souls. This sadness is caused by the offenses against God and the punishments which menace sinners. And so we children did not know what to think except to invent various means of praying and making sacrifices.”
The other thing which sanctified these children was seeing the vision of hell.
Sister Lucy explains her own mission
Of course with a nuclear device being exploded by North Korea just today, (October 9, 2006) the vision is perhaps more dramatic or more real for us. But Lucy describes her own vision and her own mission in some other terms. “My mission is not to indicate to the world the material punishments which are certain to come if the world does not pray and do penance beforehand. No! My mission is to indicate to everyone the imminent danger we are in of losing our souls for all eternity if we remain obstinate in sin.”
She then goes on to tell us what we must do in the light of the present-day circumstances. I know it is common enough for me — and I think I’ve seen it in others around me — to say “Well it’s really not my fault; it’s that person over there. He should have done his job, and if he did his job or if she did her job, then I could do my job. But until they do their job my hands are clean; I don’t have to do anything.”
We Must Not Wait
Sister Lucy has an answer for that in this interview. She also said to Father Fuentes, (who wrote it down), “Father we should not wait for an appeal to the world to come from Rome on the part of the Holy Father, to do penance. Nor should we wait for the call to penance to come from our bishops in our dioceses, nor from the religious congregations. No! Our Lord has already very often used these means and the world has not paid attention.
“That is why now it is necessary for each one of us to begin to reform himself spiritually. Each person must not only save his own soul but also help all the souls that God has placed on our path. The devil does all in his power to distract us and to take away from us the love for prayer. We shall be saved together or we shall be damned together.”
|Let us mourn the crucifixion of the Blessed Virgin Mary's Son Jesus on the Cross. He shed His blood for the sins of mankind that we may be saved, yet still, today, we crucify Him over and over again as we stand idle before the blasphemies and sacrileges against Him. Let us all pray Holy Rosaries of Reparation to salve His wounds.|
We are in the Last Times
To give us some context of where we are in salvation history, Sister Lucy tells us that we are in the last times. “Father, the Most Holy Virgin did not tell me that we are in the last times of the world, but She made me understand this for three reasons.
The first reason is because She told me that the devil is in the mood for engaging in a decisive battle against the Virgin. And a decisive battle is the final battle where one side will be victorious and the other side will suffer defeat. Hence from now on we must choose sides. Either we are for God or we are for the devil. There is no other possibility.”
I want to comment on something that has taken me some time to sort out in my own mind. Some people might feel that if they are obedient to their immediate superior, they are therefore on the side of God. And certainly that is true in many cases. However we have the first Pope, St. Peter, making the distinction for us; when the immediate superior is giving us orders contrary to the will of God, “We ought to obey God rather than men.” (Acts 5:29)
So it is important for us to realize that all authority comes from God. Of course you will find that taught in Sacred Scripture. The authority of the Pope, the authority of the Governor — in fact you will find this defined in the bull Unam Sanctam — all authority comes from God.
Pope Boniface VIII points out that there are two swords, the temporal authority sword and the spiritual sword. But both of them are given by God. And the temporal authority is lesser than the spiritual. But the spiritual itself still comes from God and the spiritual authority cannot contradict the authority of God. And so we must choose for God first of all and even against any order from a temporal ruler or a spiritual ruler if that temporal or spiritual ruler is ordering us to do something contrary to the will of God.
How do we know what is the will of God? We know it above all, I would say, by the Scriptures, by Sacred Tradition and by the Solemn Magisterium — the infallible definitions of the Church. It is on these definitions of the Church that we must draw in order to know what our God-given obligations are.
The second reason Lucy gives for knowing we are in the last times, she says, is that “She [that is, the Blessed Virgin] said to my cousins as well as to myself, that God is giving two last remedies to the world. These are the Holy Rosary and Devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. These are the last two remedies which signify that there will be no others.”
The third reason Lucy tells us that she understands that we are in the last times is “because in the plans of Divine Providence, God always, before He is about to chastise the world, exhausts all other remedies. Now, when He sees that the world pays no attention whatsoever, then, as we say in our imperfect manner of speaking, He offers us with a certain trepidation the last means of salvation, His Most Holy Mother. It is with a certain trepidation because if you despise and repulse this ultimate means, we will not have any more forgiveness from Heaven because we will have committed a sin, which the Gospel calls the sin against the Holy Spirit.”
“This sin consists of openly rejecting with full knowledge and consent, the salvation which He offers. Let us remember that Jesus Christ is a very good Son and that He does not permit that we offend and despise His Most Holy Mother.”
“We have recorded through many centuries of Church history the obvious testimony which demonstrates, by the terrible chastisements which have befallen those who have attacked the honor of His Most Holy Mother, how Our Lord Jesus Christ has always defended the honor of His Mother.”
So Sister Lucy is telling us in this interview — the last published one without interference — that we are in the last times for three reasons. First of all, the devil is in the mood for engaging in a final, decisive battle. Secondly, Our Lady said these are the last remedies given to mankind. Thirdly, because the way God acts is that He Himself exhausts all other means before He chastises, and if this Message is not heeded, then God will chastise the world.
She then goes on to tell us about other means. “Sister Lucy told me,” Father Fuentes said, “the two means to save the world are prayer and sacrifice.”
New Power to The Rosary
Regarding the Holy Rosary, Sister Lucy said, “Look, Father, the Most Holy Virgin in these last times in which we live has given a new efficacy to the recitation of the Rosary, to such an extent that there is no problem, no matter how difficult it is, whether temporal or above all spiritual, in the personal life of each one of us, of our families, of the families of the world, or of the religious communities, or even of the life of peoples and nations, that cannot be solved by the Rosary. There is no problem, I tell you, no matter how difficult it is, that we cannot resolve by the prayer of the Holy Rosary. With the Holy Rosary we will save ourselves, we will sanctify ourselves, we will console Our Lord and obtain the salvation of many souls.”
The Immaculate Heart of Mary
At the end of this interview, Sister Lucy speaks about devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Addressing herself still to Father Fuentes, she says, “Finally, devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, Our Most Holy Mother, consists in considering Her as the seat of mercy, of goodness and of pardon, and as the certain door by which we are to enter Heaven.”
The Response to Father Fuentes
There you have Sister Lucy’s interview with Father Fuentes, published with the approbation of the Bishop of Leiria-Fatima, also with that of the approbation of Father Fuentes’ own bishop, Archbishop Pio Lopez of Veracruz, and with the support of the Cardinal Archbishop of Guadalajara, Mexico.
It’s a very simple statement. In fact Sister Lucy has said more powerful things than that which Father Fuentes published. And those other statements were published without question, but this interview of Father Fuentes went around the world and got wide circulation. And — surprise, surprise! — Father Fuentes was attacked personally. He was accused of making it all up. He was accused of fabricating this.
There are telltale signs by which you should know who to believe. The first telltale sign is when you have an anonymous note coming from the Chancery of Coimbra. That is, no one in the Chancery — not the Bishop, not the Vicar General, not the Chancellor — no one is willing to say “I take responsibility for this statement.” Nevertheless, this anonymous note is published, and no one to this day has taken credit for this anonymous note attacking Father Fuentes.
My father explained to me when I was a boy, “If I get an anonymous letter I don’t even read it. I just tear it up. If the person hasn’t got the courage to take responsibility for what they write, then I haven’t got time to read it.” Unfortunately, this anonymous note was believed.
Now we know in law that for an order to be given, in an open society — unlike with the Masons who give orders anonymously, for that is their stock in trade — in an open society, whether it be the Church or the State, the person giving the order must be willing to take responsibility for doing so. He must be willing to sign the order if requested.
Now, however, we have the Church being run by anonymous notes: the anonymous note in 1960 telling us that the Secret would not be released, then the anonymous note in 1961 telling us that Father Fuentes lied about that interview.
In Father Alonso’s The Third Secret of Fatima you can read the whole text of the interview. It also gives you the background. You should know that Father Alonso himself, at first, in 1965 went along with the party line of the anonymous note. But by 1975, after doing ten years of research, he came to the support of Father Fuentes and said that there is nothing in his interview that is not authentic. And he says that there is nothing that has not been confirmed by Sister Lucy in many other places as having said things like this.
So I urge those who wish to question the details to read the book by Frère Michel, The Whole Truth About Fatima, volume III, The Third Secret. (The whole interview of Father Fuentes is also published there.) For those of you who don’t have a problem understanding or believing this, I would still urge you to read Frère Michel's very important book, especially the last third, which was published in 1985. At that time Frère Michel did not have the benefit of the last twenty years of research. But still, it is a major milestone of research on the part of the Fatima Secret the whole of which has not yet been released.
Our Lady is Sad
She Awaits your Response
I want to impress upon you, once again, that Our Lady is very sad because no one has paid attention to Her Message. So each of us — I don’t mean the person beside you, to the right or to the left, or in front or behind you, I mean you, yourself — each of us can make this decision on our own, certainly in our heart, that we will at least do our part to have the Blessed Virgin become less unhappy, less sad. We can make the decision that we will pay attention to Her Message, first of all and above all we can decide to live by Her Message, be guided by it. Pray it. Have it promoted in our minds, in our hearts, in our will, in our words and in our actions.
To be Continued Next Issue