Caps off Conference
The Fatima Center closed its “Only Way to World Peace” forum with an impressive Rosary Procession through the streets of Botucatu on Friday, the final evening of the conference.
On the previous Sundays, Archbishop Aloysio José Leal Penna of Botucatu had an announcement read in all the parishes inviting everyone in the diocese to attend the procession.
The evening procession started inside the parish Church of St. Benedict, and proceeded through the streets toward the Cathedral.
Approximately 200 priests from the conference were joined in the procession by many laypeople who answered Archbishop Penna’s call to participate in the event.
The Rosary was recited in Spanish, Portuguese, Latin, Polish and English, and led by priests using an amplification system attached to a small car that traveled slowly with the group. The Fatima Ave was intoned between the decades.
Numerous residents peeked out their windows or came out onto their front steps to watch the candlelit procession go by. Two shopkeepers, moved by curiosity to step outside to see the holy event, gratefully accepted two lit candles which they carried back into their shop.
The procession proceeded slowly and steadily through the dark streets; Our Lady of Fatima’s noble statue was propped up on a bier atop the shoulders of four men. Her image appeared moving in silhouette against glowing signs of boutiques and cell phone companies.
At last the procession winded into the beautiful St. Anne’s Cathedral as hymns to Our Lady were intoned by the priests and laity present.
Once inside the Cathedral, Father Gruner delivered a short address about the Brown Scapular and invited those who wanted to be enrolled to come forward. Practically every man, woman and child in the congregation stepped up to be invested in Our Lady’s Mantle.
The following Sunday, Father Gruner preached at a parish church in Sao Paulo after each of the two Sunday Masses. There he likewise invested hundreds in the Brown Scapular.
The Fatima Center gave away over 7,000 Brown Scapulars to the priests during the course of the conference, and has requests for over 160,000 more to be sent to Brazil alone.
Our Lady at Lourdes said She wanted processions as an act of devotion to Her. Our Lady of Fatima said She wanted us to pray the Rosary and to wear the Brown Scapular. All of these requests were particularly honored at the Friday night procession in Botucatu.
The Fatima Center expresses its gratitude to Archbishop Aloysio José Leal Penna of Botucatu for his personal gracious hospitality and that of many members of his diocesan staff — as well as the many resources he put at our disposal to carry on this Conference so successfully. His public support in the face of opposition from unexplained quarters will no doubt be very well rewarded by Jesus and Mary Themselves.