Tuesday 18 November 2014

The New Fatima Revelation in Closer Detail (Part Two)

In part one of this post (which can be found here), we discussed the influences behind Cardinal Bertone's remarks following Sr. Lucia's funeral Mass, when he made a direct connection between the "signs in heaven" described in the Bible with the events of 9/11. We noted how Sr. Lucia is known to have written a letter to Pope St. John Paul II in the aftermath of the attacks on the World Trade Center. This was soon followed by the dispatch of Archbishop Bertone, the then Secretary of the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith, to interview Sr. Lucia in November 2001 - the timing of which seems in all likelihood in direct regard to the letter she had sent the Holy Father. We have also noted previously in the first part of this post how there are several strong indications that the "attachment" to the Third Secret of Fatima (the interpretation of the secret given to Sr. Lucia by Our Lady), contains a precise date concerning the turn of the millennium, and relates to the struggle of the Woman Adorned with the Sun against the Dragon of the Apocalypse. 

Once we begin to pool this evidence together, it strongly suggests that Cardinal Bertone's contention that the events of 9/11 are connected to the "signs of heaven" described in the Bible, is in fact rooted in some information conveyed to him by the seer of Fatima herself - which was most likely originally communicated to the pope in the immediate wake of the destruction of the Twin Towers.
At the time, there were rumours circulated by Inside the Vatican that Sr. Lucia had sent a letter to Pope St. John Paul II immediately after the attacks on the World Trade Center. Citing anonymous sources from within the Carmelite order, traditionalist newspaper The Remnant published yet another rumour that Sr. Lucia had received a new apparition of the Virgin Mary on October 7th, 2001 - the Feast of Our Lady of the Rosary - which rather aptly, also reflects the struggle between the Arab and Christian worlds, since this feast commemorates the Battle of Lepanto in 1571, when Catholic forces triumphed over the Islamic Ottoman fleet.  The alleged new revelation was supposedly to ask for prayers to prevent an impending "blood bath", and seems to be partially based on the fact that the Carmel of Coimbra did indeed hold to a 24 hour period of prayer on 7th October, 2001. At least one Carmelite convent had confirmed that it had received a letter from the Association of Our Lady of the Rosary of Fatima, dated to 13th September, 2001 (just two days after 9/11), calling on the Carmelite order to unite with Sr. Lucia in praying for peace in the world on 7th October - the Feast of the Holy Rosary

Archbishop Bertone himself had confirmed that the purpose of his meeting with Sr. Lucia was specifically to address the recent developments surrounding the events of 9/11, during a press release published on 9th January 2002:

In recent months, especially after the sad event of the terrorist attack last 11 September, articles on alleged new revelations by Sr Lucia, announcements of letters of warning to the Pope and apocalyptic reinterpretations of the Fatima message have appeared in the Italian and foreign press.

The suspicion that the Holy See did not publish the whole text of the third part of the "secret" is being reaffirmed and certain "Fatimist" movements have repeated their accusation that the Holy Father has not yet consecrated Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

It was therefore considered necessary, with the agreement of Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger and the Bishops of both Leiria-Fatima and Coimbra, that I meet Sr Lucia in the presence of Rev. Luis Kondor, SVD, Vice-Postulator of the cause of Bl. Francisco and Bl. Jacinta, and of the Prioress of the Carmelite Convent of St Teresa, to obtain explanations and information directly from the only surviving visionary.
(Archbishop Tarcisco Bertone, Secretary of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, L'Osservatore Romano, 9 January 2002. See the full text here)

However during the same press release, Archbishop Bertone stated that Sr. Lucia denied that she had received a new revelation after the events of 9/11, quoting her as saying:

"If I had received new revelations, I would not have communicated them to anyone, but I would have told them directly to the Holy Father..." 

So we can safely rule out the possibility that Sr. Lucia received a new private revelation at this time, as was suggested by The Remnant. But there was no denial that she had sent a letter to Pope John Paul II in the wake of the attacks on the World Trade Center. Instead we find a confirmation that if there were any developments concerning the message of Fatima, Sr. Lucia would have communicated this directly to the pope. This suggests that the content of the 2001 letter directly referred to the contents of the Third Secret or the attachment to the Secret kept in the Papal Apartments, and was perhaps a new understanding of this material in light of the world-changing events which had occurred at the turn of the millennium, rather than containing details of any new private revelation. To use the words mentioned by Archbishop Bertone in his press release, the contents of this letter contained "warning to the pope and apocalyptic reinterpretations of the Fatima message".

The then Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, added more insight to the contents of this letter, by adding his own comment following the publication of the Inside the Vatican article on 26th October, 2001:

Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, said Thursday that the rumors about this alleged letter are the continuation of "an old polemic fed by certain people of dubious credibility," for the purpose of "destabilizing the internal equilibrium of the Roman Curia and of troubling the people of God."
(Zenit News Agency, 28th October, 2001)

Although Cardinal Ratzinger's words were intended to bemoan the fact that these rumours were being exploited by the "Fatimist" movement, it has been noted they do not deny the existence of this letter - but rather add an intriguing insight into the destabilizing effects that these rumours were having on "the internal equilibrium of the Roman Curia". In response to this statement, the "Fatimist" movement pointed out that the very fact that there were internal divisions within the Roman Curia itself on this matter, highlights that there was some considerable substance to these claims. If there were no truth behind these rumours, then they could not possibly cause any internal divisions within the Roman Curia - given that the high ranking members of the Vatican hierarchy are the very people who would be fully appraised of these matters. The fact that the Roman Curia was divided on this issue points to something of considerable weight behind these rumours, and indicates not only that the existence of this letter was widely known within the Vatican hierarchy, but also that its contents (which most likely consisted of an "apocalyptic reinterpretation of the Fatima message" in light of the events of 9/11) proved to be extremely divisive. 

We can find yet another detail of the content of this letter in Cardinal Bertone's book The Last Secret of Fatima. Here, Bertone informs us that when he met Sr. Lucia for the second time, after the events of 9/11: "...she showed absolutely no interest in drawing connections between Fatima and the attack on the Twin Towers." (The Last Secret of Fatima, p78). While on the surface this would appear to contradict the possibility that this letter contained some sort of apocalyptic reinterpretation of the Secret of Fatima linking it to the attacks on the World Trade Center, it actually provides us with a number of clues. Given that Sr. Lucia had shown no interest in connecting the Secret of Fatima to the events of 9/11, we can safely conclude that it was not her that had brought this topic up during her interview. Which can only mean that Cardinal Bertone had questioned her on this subject - asking her if she thought there was a connection between the Secret of Fatima and 9/11. The fact that it was Cardinal Bertone who had raised this connection suggests that he had been considering a possible link between the two himself, most likely due to the contents of the letter she had recently sent Pope St. John Paul II. While this means that there was no explicit link between the events of 9/11 and the Secret of Fatima in this letter, that must have been something within it to suggest such a connection - enough to warrant Cardinal Bertone's question asking if Sr. Lucia thought the two were linked. Sr. Lucia's response to this question - that of disinterest in making this connection herself, seems to be a typical trait of her personality. We know that Sr. Lucia humbly deferred to the Church authorities in matters of interpretation, stating of the Third Secret: "I wrote down what I saw; however it was not for me to interpret it, but for the Pope". ("Conversation with Sister Maria Lucia of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart", The Message of Fatima). 

Although Sr. Lucia did not answer the question that Cardinal Bertone had put to her, asking her if she thought there was a link between the Secret of Fatima and the events of 9/11, we know that he remained personally convinced that the attacks on the Twin Towers were related to the "signs in heaven" described in the Bible - given the fact that he publicly mulled over this possibility following Sr. Lucia's funeral Mass. This means that although it was not completely explicit, there must have been something contained in this letter which strongly suggested a connection between the Secret of Fatima, 9/11, and the apocalyptic "signs in heaven" described in the Bible - which herald the moment Satan is cast from heaven down to the earth, signaling the rise to power of the Antichrist and the fulfilment of the prophecy of the mark of the Beast. 

The recently published private revelation, concerning a vision seen by Sr. Lucia which prompted her to commit the Third Secret to writing, helps us to gain a better understanding of the implications behind these events, and what they portend for the future. In order to fully grasp the true significance of this private revelation, we must turn back to examine some material which was published earlier on this blog, and re-evaluate some of our previous conclusions in light of this new evidence.

Ishtar and the Whore of Babylon

As we have already discussed in some detail in an earlier post, there are some remarkable parallels between the symbolism of the angel of the Third Secret and the imagery of the Angel of the Seven Thunders  described in the Apocalypse - once we take into account a bridging link provided by the Book of DeuteronomyThe Angel of the Seven Thunders, who raises up his right hand to swear an eternal oath before God, is directly based on a passage in the Book of Deuteronomy, which combines the motif of a flaming or "flashing" sword with the raising of a hand to heaven to swear an eternal oath:

“See now that I, even I, am he, and there is no god beside me; I kill and I make alive; I wound and I heal; and there is none that can deliver out of my hand. For I lift up my hand to heaven and swear, As I live forever, if I sharpen my flashing sword and my hand takes hold on judgment, I will take vengeance on my adversaries and will repay those who hate me".
(Deut 32:39-41)

The Angel of the Seven Thunders was seen by St. John holding the open little scroll in his hands, and was almost identically described as stretching out his hand to heaven to swear an eternal oath: 

And the angel whom I saw standing on the sea and on the land raised his right hand to heaven and swore by him who lives forever and ever, who created heaven and what is in it, the earth and what is in it, and the sea and what is in it, that there would be no more delay, but that in the days of the trumpet call to be sounded by the seventh angel, the mystery of God would be fulfilled, just as he announced to his servants the prophets.
(Rev 10:1-7)

Only this time, the imagery directly corresponds to the ancient descriptions given for the Colossus of Rhodes, which was similarly depicted as standing with one foot on the land and one on the sea, while at the same time holding a flaming torch up in the air. This is but one example of the many instances in which the Book of Revelation uses parallelism incorporating the mythology of different Ancient Near Eastern cultures. In doing so, the Apocalypse aligns such imagery with themes found in the Old Testament, in order to imbue the text with a densely layered, complex structure, which can only be fully understood in light of this broader context. 

The imagery of the Colossus of Rhodes is in turn the primary inspiration for the Statue of Liberty - which was conceived of by its Masonic designers as a "new Colossus", that would adorn the shores of the United States. This bridging connection between the Apocalypse, the Book of Deuteronomy and the imagery of the Colossus of Rhodes informs us that the Angel of the Seven Thunders described in the Book of Revelation is also the angel with the flaming sword seen by the shepherd children in the Third Secret of Fatima, and parallels events which unfold on earth during the eschatological age. 
In the post The Angel of the Seven Thunders, we also noted how the French Freemason who designed the Statue of Liberty, Frédéric Auguste Bartholdi, styled its appearance on the Greek goddess Hecate, who as well as sharing the distinct rays around her head, is similarly depicted in ancient art as bearing a torch.  Hecate was closely associated with the Egyptian goddess Isis and her counterparts in the Mesopotamian pantheons, the mother goddess Ishtar/Inanna/Astarte, as well as the goddess Semiramis - the mythical wife of King Ninus, who was identified with the biblical King Nimrod. Ancient Greek historians attributed the building of the city of Nineveh to King Ninus, and asserted that it was from him that the ancient capital of Assyria derived its name (which was a centre for the worship of Ishtar). The Book of Genesis similarly informs us that it was Nimrod who founded the city of Nineveh:

Cush fathered Nimrod; he was the first on earth to be a mighty man. He was a mighty hunter before the LORD. Therefore it is said, “Like Nimrod a mighty hunter before the LORD.” The beginning of his kingdom was Babel, Erech, Accad, and Calneh, in the land of Shinar. From that land he went into Assyria and built Nineveh, Rehoboth-Ir, Calah, and Resen between Nineveh and Calah; that is the great city. (Gen 10:7-12)

Ninus/Nimrod was also identified with the Mesopotamian deity Ninurta, who similar to Nimrod's description in the Bible as a "mighty hunter", was often depicted with a bow and arrow.

Ninurta depicted as a "mighty hunter" with a bow and arrow

Ninurta, shown to the left holding a bow and arrow, standing between a lion and his daughter, the Babylonian goddess Ishtar.

According to both Jewish and Christian tradition, it was King Nimrod who constructed the Tower of Babel. So by evoking the legacy of the Greek goddess Hecate and her Ancient Near Eastern counterparts (such as Isis and Ishtar), the symbolism of the Statue of Liberty not only alludes to the Colossus of Rhodes and the Angel of the Seven Thunders, but is also closely associated with the story of King Nimrod and the construction of the Tower of Babel. In basing the symbolism of this famous statue on the mother-goddess figure of the ancient world, the Freemason architects responsible for its design appear to have deliberately associated it with the Whore of Babylon described in the Apocalypse. 

In the Book of Revelation, the Whore of Babylon represents the eschatological world power; but its imagery is a deliberate parody of the Babylonian deity Ishtar, who was the goddess of fertility, love war and sex, and mother/guardian of sacred prostitutes. Worship of Ishtar in the ancient Levant involved the use of temple prostitutes in fertility rites, and the Book of Amos informs us that some Israelites had even adopted this practice beside altars dedicated to Yahweh, due to religious syncretism:

a man and his father go in to the same girl, so that my holy name is profaned; they lay themselves down beside every altar on garments taken in pledge, and in the house of their God they drink the wine of those who have been fined. (Amos 2:7-8)

This aspect of Isthar worship is highlighted by the title "mother of prostitutes" in the "name of mystery" written upon the head of the Whore of Babylon:

The woman was arrayed in purple and scarlet, and adorned with gold and jewels and pearls, holding in her hand a golden cup full of abominations and the impurities of her sexual immorality. And on her forehead was written a name of mystery:“Babylon the great, mother of prostitutes and of earth's abominations.” And I saw the woman, drunk with the blood of the saints, the blood of the martyrs of Jesus.
(Rev 17:4-6)

Religious syncreticism was a serious problem during this period of the Old Testament, and the goddess Asherah was frequently worshipped alongside Yahweh by some of the ancient Israelites, as a "divine consort" - much to the ire of the prophets. In the Ugaratic texts discovered at Ras Shamra in the early 20th century, Asherah is also called Elat (goddess) and Qodesh (holy one). This contains an important insight into unraveling the mystery behind the name of the Whore of Babylon in the Apocalypse here, as in the Hebrew Bible, temple prostitutes are called qedesha (consecrated ones) as opposed to the ordinary word used for whore (zonah). A difference which is used in the Book of Deuteronomy:

“None of the daughters of Israel shall be a cult prostitute [qedesha], and none of the sons of Israel shall be a cult prostitute [qedesh]. You shall not bring the fee of a prostitute [zonah] or the wages of a dog into the house of the LORD your God in payment for any vow, for both of these are an abomination to the LORD your God."
(Deut 23:17-18)

The word qedesha (or kedeshah) is taken from the same Semetic root word (qdsh) used as a title for Asherah. So the alternative name for the goddess Asherah - Qodesh, appears to have been used as a Hebrew word-play for qedesha ("sacred prostitute") in the Apocalypse. So to the Hebrew mind, the "prostitute" or "qedesha" of Babylon, would quickly evoke images of the Canaanite goddess Asherah. Asherah was adopted into the religion of ancient Egypt as the goddess Qetesh (derived from the Canaanite name Qedesha), and was considered to be the fertility goddess of sexual pleasure.

The Egyptian Stele of Qetesh, which depicts the goddess Qetesh here holding a snake, and standing on the back of a lion - a symbol of Ishtar/Astarte

Qetesh was considered by the Egyptians to be a combination of the goddesses Asherah, Astarte and Anat, and like the Greek goddess Hecate (who provides the chief imagery of the Statue of Liberty), is one of the best examples in antiquity of the idea of a "triple goddess". The fact that Qetesh was considered to be a triple goddess, or a deity with an inherent threefold nature, gives this figure a striking association with the Greek goddess Hecate.  Hecate was the goddess of witchcraft and crossroads, and is the most widely known triple goddess in the ancient world.  She was usually depicted in threefold form in ancient art, and cult images of Hecate in triplicate form were often placed at crossroads with three ways, which served to highlight an aspect of this goddess as being a conduit between worlds, wherein she would be invoked to manipulate earthly events through the practice of occult magic.

Hecate in triple form

Another remarkable similarity between Qetesh and the Greek goddess Hecate is that both were often depicted holding a snake.

The Triple-Goddess Stone shows the Egyptian goddess Qetesh holding a snake, with the inscription "Qudshu-Astarte-Anat", showing that these three names referred to the one goddess

Hecate shown holding a snake and dagger

The various connections between the triple goddesses Hecate and Qetesh establish them as being merely different manifestations of the same deity, meaning that the Statue of Liberty is basically a representation of the Mesopotamian goddess Ishtar/Inanna/Astarte - the qedesha or "sacred prostitute" of Babylon, and is partially styled after the Colossus of Rhodes.

A further link between the Whore of Babylon and the various manifestations of the ancient Babylonian goddess Ishtar can be found in her connection to myth of the destruction of the primordial seven headed water dragon. One of the earliest versions of this myth is found in the story of Ishtar's father - Ninurta. As we have already discussed, Ninurta was associated by ancient historians with the Biblical King Nimrod, and in ancient Mesopotamian mythology, he was tasked with slaying a seven headed serpent associated with the mushussu, (which in a further parallel with the Dragon of the Apocalypse, translates as "reddish snake) - a hybrid between a serpent, lion and bird.

And another sign appeared in heaven: behold, a great red dragon, with seven heads and ten horns, and on his heads seven diadems. (Rev 12:3)

The mushussu (previously known by an incorrect transliteration as sirrush) was depicted on the Isthar Gate constructed by King Nebuchadnezzar circa 575BC, which was the main entrance to the ancient city of Babylon.

The mushussu/sirrush as it appeared on the Ishtar Gate, which is now found at the Pergamon Museum in Berlin

This motif of a legendary hero struggling against a primordial serpent recurs in other legends, such as the Babylonian god Marduk killing Tiamat, the conflict of the Egypt sun god Ra against the serpent Apophis, or Heracles battling against the Lernaean Hydra. In the land of ancient Israel, the most well known version of this story was the Canaanite myth regarding Baal Hadad's victory over the seven headed sea monster Yam/Lotan. In the Canaanite mythology, the mother goddess Asherah offers herself up as a consort to Yam, the god of the sea, in order to placate his wrath against her children. But Baal, being angered by Asherah's suggestion assaults Yam in a fit of rage, and defeats him by crushing his skull with a club. In the Hittite version of this story, Asherah is identified with Ishtar.

This myth about a mother goddess who was worshiped through the act of sacred prostitution is used by the Apocalypse to form the basis of the narrative concerning the Whore of Babylon, told through the lens of the Levithan story found in the Old Testament. But instead of being shown standing on the back of a lion (as Ishtar was usually depicted), this version of the Babylonian mother goddess is seen riding on the back of the mushussu-like beast with seven heads - which according to Canaanite mythology was the very primordial serpent she had sought to form an alliance with to serve her own purposes:

Then one of the seven angels who had the seven bowls came and said to me, “Come, I will show you the judgment of the great prostitute who is seated on many waters, with whom the kings of the earth have committed sexual immorality, and with the wine of whose sexual immorality the dwellers on earth have become drunk.” And he carried me away in the Spirit into a wilderness, and I saw a woman sitting on a scarlet beast that was full of blasphemous names, and it had seven heads and ten horns. 
(Rev 17:1-3)

The Book of Jeremiah explicitly informs us that the immediate cause of the downfall of the land of Judah at the hands of Babylon was because of the Israelite's syncretistic worship of the Canaanite mother goddess Asherah. Jeremiah tells us that the people of ancient Judah paid homage to the "queen of heaven" (i.e. Asherah, following the Cannanite pantheon) by pouring out drink offerings to her as a libation:

Then all the men who knew that their wives had made offerings to other gods, and all the women who stood by, a great assembly, all the people who lived in Pathros in the land of Egypt, answered Jeremiah: “As for the word that you have spoken to us in the name of the LORD, we will not listen to you. But we will do everything that we have vowed, make offerings to the queen of heaven and pour out drink offerings to her, as we did, both we and our fathers, our kings and our officials, in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem. For then we had plenty of food, and prospered, and saw no disaster. But since we left off making offerings to the queen of heaven and pouring out drink offerings to her, we have lacked everything and have been consumed by the sword and by famine.” And the women said, “When we made offerings to the queen of heaven and poured out drink offerings to her, was it without our husbands' approval that we made cakes for her bearing her image and poured out drink offerings to her?” Then Jeremiah said to all the people, men and women, all the people who had given him this answer: “As for the offerings that you offered in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem, you and your fathers, your kings and your officials, and the people of the land, did not the LORD remember them? Did it not come into his mind? The LORD could no longer bear your evil deeds and the abominations that you committed. Therefore your land has become a desolation and a waste and a curse, without inhabitant, as it is this day. It is because you made offerings and because you sinned against the LORD and did not obey the voice of the LORD or walk in his law and in his statutes and in his testimonies that this disaster has happened to you, as at this day. (Jer 44:15-23)

Jeremiah explicitly states here that because of these offerings poured out to Asherah, honouring her as the "queen of heaven", Judah had heaped Divine Judgment upon itself at the hands of Babylon, bringing about the period of the Babylonian exile. Although some Israelites had engaged in syncretic practices, and worshipped Asherah as a consort of Yahweh, in reality God's only bride was Judah itself, and by turning to other gods, Judah had prostituted itself among the nations. The cup that Judah had offered as a libation to Asherah was in fact a poison that she would be forced to drink down herself, following the fate of her sister Israel (referred to as Samaria below) - when the Northern Kingdom was swept away by the Assyrian Empire:
Thus the LORD, the God of Israel, said to me: “Take from my hand this cup of the wine of wrath, and make all the nations to whom I send you drink it. They shall drink and stagger and be crazed because of the sword that I am sending among them.” So I took the cup from the LORD's hand, and made all the nations to whom the LORD sent me drink it: Jerusalem and the cities of Judah, its kings and officials, to make them a desolation and a waste, a hissing and a curse, as at this day; (Jer 25:15-18)

...and they shall deal with you in hatred and take away all the fruit of your labor and leave you naked and bare, and the nakedness of your whoring shall be uncovered. Your lewdness and your whoring have brought this upon you, because you played the whore with the nations and defiled yourself with their idols. You have gone the way of your sister; therefore I will give her cup into your hand. Thus says the Lord GOD: “You shall drink your sister's cup that is deep and large; you shall be laughed at and held in derision, for it contains much; you will be filled with drunkenness and sorrow. A cup of horror and desolation, the cup of your sister Samaria; you shall drink it and drain it out, and gnaw its shards, and tear your breasts; for I have spoken, declares the Lord GOD. (Ezek 23:29-34)

Jeremiah goes on to tell us that Babylon itself would in turn drink from this cup, pointing to events which are to unfold in the future:

Babylon was a golden cup in the LORD's hand, making all the earth drunken; the nations drank of her wine; therefore the nations went mad. Suddenly Babylon has fallen and been broken; wail for her! (Jer 51:7-8)

It is important here to understand the exact eschatological meaning of the "cup of wrath" here, which is portrayed in the Bible as a parody of the worship of Asherah/Ishtar. While the immediate context here is that of the land of Judah being punished for paying homage to false gods, it also serves as a template for an overarching eschatological narrative - which transposes these events, and projects their significance into the end of days. As I outline in some detail in my book Unveiling the Apocalypse, the Book of Revelation connects the cup of wrath with both the eschatological earthquake (described as the most powerful such event in human history), and the judgment of the end time world power symbolically termed as "Babylon the great":

The seventh angel poured out his bowl into the air, and a loud voice came out of the temple, from the throne, saying, “It is done!” And there were flashes of lightning, rumblings, peals of thunder, and a great earthquake such as there had never been since man was on the earth, so great was that earthquake. The great city was split into three parts, and the cities of the nations fell, and God remembered Babylon the great, to make her drain the cup of the wine of the fury of his wrath. (Rev 16:17-19)

We are told here that the occurrence of the eschatological earthquake immediately precedes the downfall of Babylon, which is symbolized by an angel hurling a millstone into the sea. The cup of wrath is further connected to the eschatological earthquake in the Book of Isaiah, where it is also called "the cup of staggering" - in which the trembling earth is compared with the intoxicated stumbling of a drunkard:

 I am the LORD your God, who stirs up the sea so that its waves roar - the LORD of hosts is his name.
And I have put my words in your mouth and covered you in the shadow of my hand, establishing the heavens and laying the foundations of the earth, and saying to Zion, ‘You are my people.’
Wake yourself, wake yourself, stand up, O Jerusalem, you who have drunk from the hand of the LORD the cup of his wrath, who have drunk to the dregs the bowl, the cup of staggering.
(Isa 51:15-17)

Moreover, Isaiah also tells us not only that the entire earth will be shaken out of its very foundation during this event, but like Jeremiah, he also links the eschatological earthquake with the final gathering of the world's armies during the battle of Armageddon:

The sound of a tumult is on the mountains as of a great multitude! The sound of an uproar of kingdoms, of nations gathering together! The LORD of hosts is mustering a host for battle. They come from a distant land, from the end of the heavens, the LORD and the weapons of his indignation, to destroy the whole land. Wail, for the day of the LORD is near; as destruction from the Almighty it will come! Therefore all hands will be feeble, and every human heart will melt. They will be dismayed: pangs and agony will seize them; they will be in anguish like a woman in labor. They will look aghast at one another; their faces will be aflame. Behold, the day of the LORD comes, cruel, with wrath and fierce anger to make the land a desolation and to destroy its sinners from it. For the stars of the heavens and their constellations will not give their light; the sun will be dark at its rising, and the moon will not shed its light. I will punish the world for its evil, and the wicked for their iniquity; I will put an end to the pomp of the arrogant, and lay low the pompous pride of the ruthless. I will make people more rare than fine gold, and mankind than the gold of Ophir. Therefore I will make the heavens tremble, and the earth will be shaken out of its place, at the wrath of the LORD of hosts in the day of his fierce anger. 
(Isa 13:4-13)

For the windows of heaven are opened, and the foundations of the earth tremble. The earth is utterly broken, the earth is split apart, the earth is violently shaken. The earth staggers like a drunken man; it sways like a hut; its transgression lies heavy upon it, and it falls, and will not rise again. (Isa 24:18-20)

The Fatima Connection

Given that the pouring out of the cup of wrath is directly connected to both the eschatological earthquake and the chastisement of the end time world power referred to as "Babylon", we can begin to understand the true significance of the vision that Sr. Lucia seen when she was instructed by the Virgin Mary to commit the Third Secret to writing on 3rd January, 1944:

Towards 16:00 hours on January 3rd, 1944, in the convent’s chapel, before the Tabernacle, Lucia asked Jesus to let her know His will: ‘I then feel that a friendly hand, affectionate and maternal, touches my shoulder.’

It is ‘the Mother of Heaven’ who says to her: ‘be at peace and write what they command you to, but not that which you were given to understand about its meaning,’ intending to allude to the meaning of the vision that the Virgin herself had revealed to her.

Right after – says Sr. Lucia – ‘I felt my spirit flooded by a light-filled mystery which is God and in Him I saw and heard: the point of the flame-like lance which detaches, touches the axis of the earth and it [the earth] shakes: mountains, cities, towns and villages with their inhabitants are buried. The sea, rivers and clouds leave their bounds, they overflow, flood and drag with them into a whirlpool, houses and people in a number unable to be counted; it is the purification of the world from the sin it is immersed in. Hatred, ambition, cause destructive wars. Afterward I felt in the increased beating of my heart and in my spirit a quiet voice which said: ‘in time, one faith, one baptism, one Church, Holy, Catholic, Apostolic. Heaven in eternity!’ This word, ‘Heaven,’ filled my heart with peace and happiness, so much so that, almost without realizing it, I continued to repeat for some time: Heaven, Heaven!’

The vision of a "flame-like lance" touching the axis of the earth here, causing a massive earthquake, directly echoes the Book of Isaiah's description of the earth being shaken out of its place (Isa 13:13) and the trembling of the foundation of the world (Isa 24:18). We now know that huge earthquakes can indeed shift the axis of the earth, given that the earth's tilt was slightly shifted during both the Indonesian earthquake of 2004, and the earthquake in Japan in 2011. The fact that this vision is directly connected to the eschatological earthquake, informs us that the subsequent portion of this private revelation is describing the destruction of Babylon foretold in the Apocalypse. So the angel threatening to strike the earth with the flaming sword seen in the Third Secret is directly associated with the eschatological earthquake and chastisement of the world power symbolically referred to as "Babylon".
The next part of Sr. Lucia's 1944 vision, which details how the eschatological earthquake levels entire mountains and cities, followed by a huge tsunami and destructive wars, is strikingly similar to the Book of Ezekiel - which speaks of how mountains will be thrown down in the wake of this earthquake, and ultimately results in the battle of Armageddon:

For in my jealousy and in my blazing wrath I declare, On that day there shall be a great earthquake in the land of Israel. The fish of the sea and the birds of the heavens and the beasts of the field and all creeping things that creep on the ground, and all the people who are on the face of the earth, shall quake at my presence. And the mountains shall be thrown down, and the cliffs shall fall, and every wall shall tumble to the ground. I will summon a sword against Gog on all my mountains, declares the Lord GOD. Every man's sword will be against his brother. With pestilence and bloodshed I will enter into judgment with him, and I will rain upon him and his hordes and the many peoples who are with him torrential rains and hailstones, fire and sulfur. (Ezek 38:19-22)

Compare this with the Apocalypse:

And when the thousand years are ended, Satan will be released from his prison and will come out to deceive the nations that are at the four corners of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them for battle; their number is like the sand of the sea. And they marched up over the broad plain of the earth and surrounded the camp of the saints and the beloved city, but fire came down from heaven and consumed them... (Rev 20:7-9)

The mountains seen being thrown down here is directly equated with the "burning mountain" being thrown into the sea in Rev 8:8 - which the Book of Jeremiah connects with the destruction of Babylon by the sea:

“I will repay Babylon and all the inhabitants of Chaldea before your very eyes for all the evil that they have done in Zion, declares the LORD. “Behold, I am against you, O destroying mountain, declares the LORD, which destroys the whole earth; I will stretch out my hand against you, and roll you down from the crags, and make you a burnt mountain. (Jer 51:24-25)

“How Babylon is taken, the praise of the whole earth seized! How Babylon has become a horror among the nations! The sea has come up on Babylon; she is covered with its tumultuous waves. Her cities have become a horror, a land of drought and a desert, a land in which no one dwells, and through which no son of man passes. (Jer 51:41-43)

The second angel blew his trumpet, and something like a great mountain, burning with fire, was thrown into the sea, and a third of the sea became blood. (Rev 8:8)

In my book Unveiling the Apocalypse: Prophecy in Catholic Tradition, I forward the hypothesis that the prophecy of the "burning mountain" being thrown into the sea foretells the future lateral collapse of the volcano Cumbre Vieja in the Canary Islands, which some of the world's most prominent geophysicists believe will generate a mega-tsunami that will devastate the east coast of the Americas, as well as parts of Western Europe and North Africa. The United States of America is currently the only dominant world power that fits the portion of the prophecy that describes the Whore of Babylon as the "great city which has dominion over the kings of the earth" (Rev 17:18). The fact that one of the chief symbols of America is embodied by a statue which was styled by its Masonic architects after the pagan goddesses Hecate/Qetesh/Asherah/Ishtar (the mythology of which forms the basis for the Whore of Babylon), can only further affirm this identification.

In Unveiling the Apocalypse, I proposed that the eschatological earthquake centred on Israel at the end time would lead to a colossal surge in volcanic activity across the North African tectonic plate. culminating in the eruption of Cumbre Vieja, at La Palma in the Canary Islands. This hypothesis was formed on passage of the Apocalypse which states that God would remember to punish Babylon the great for its sins at the occurrence of the eschatological earthquake (Rev 16:19), and the fact that the Book of Ezekiel prophesied that entire mountains would be thrown down during this colossal seismic event (Ezek 38:20). This can only mean that the geological impact of eschatological earthquake is intimately connected to the "great mountain, burning with fire" being thrown into the sea, both of which are related to the pouring out of the cup of wrath held in the hands of the Whore of Babylon. I further speculated that the results of this volcanic collapse was in some way part of the Secret of Fatima, since Sr. Lucia had specified that its contents were directly related to chapters 8-13 of the Apocalypse, and the judgment of Babylon by the burning mountain being cast into the sea is first mentioned in Rev 8:8.

This hypothesis seems to be confirmed by the recent publication of the vision seen by Sr. Lucia's in 1944, which links the angel of the Third Secret striking the earth with his flaming sword with both the occurrence of the eschatological earthquake and the destruction of Babylon by the sea during the end-time - the results of the outpouring of the cup of wrath. As Rabbi Johnathan Cahn pointed out in his bestselling book The Harbinger, before God judges a nation he always first sends a warning - as was the case during the prelude to the fall of the Northern Kingdom of Israel to Assyria in the 8th century BC. It seems then that the events of 9/11 served as such a warning and call to repentance before the pouring out of the cup of wrath. As the Book of Amos tells us, God always reveals his secrets in advance to his servants the prophets before disaster is meted out:

Is a trumpet blown in a city,
and the people are not afraid?
Does disaster come to a city,
unless the LORD has done it?
“For the Lord GOD does nothing
without revealing his secret
to his servants the prophets.
The lion has roared;
who will not fear?
The Lord GOD has spoken;
who can but prophesy?”
(Amos 3:6-8)

Given that Sr. Lucia had written to the pope in the immediate aftermath of the events of 9/11 (which took place just over a year after the revelation of the Third Secret), could it be that God had given her a new understanding of the secret revealed to his servants, the three humble shepherd children of Fatima? An understanding that the attacks on the World Trade Center identified America as being the nation Sr. Lucia saw being destroyed in the sea during her vision of 1944? There seems to be a apparent symbolism in the destruction of the two tallest towers standing in front of an idol styled after the goddesses Asherah/Ishtar, who is in turn linked in Babylonian mythology to Ninurta/Nimrod and thus to the story of the Tower of Babel and the combat against the seven headed water dragon. A statue which is not only a goddess which quite literally is the qedesha, or sacred prostitute of Babylon, but which also is based on the Colossus of Rhodes and thus is directly paralleled by the Angel of the Seven Thunders - who calls out with a voice like "a lion roaring" at the opening of the "little scroll" and the sounding of the seven thunders:

He had a little scroll open in his hand. And he set his right foot on the sea, and his left foot on the land, and called out with a loud voice, like a lion roaring. When he called out, the seven thunders sounded. (Rev 10:2-3) 

The link to the story of King Nimrod/Ninurta, the Tower of Babel and Ishtar is further compounded when we take into consideration that the events of 9/11 took place so shortly after the 1999 solar eclipse (which I argue was part of the "signs in heaven" referenced by Cardinal Bertone) - the extremely narrow path of totality of which passed directly through the ancient city of Nineveh, in Mosul, Iraq. It seems to be beyond coincidence that this exact location has recently been taken over by an Islamist terrorist organisation bearing the acronym ISIS (the name of the Egyptian equivalent of Ishtar), all as a result of the American led invasion of Iraq in the aftermath of 9/11. This new development appears to be an example of the "ripple-effect" of prophecy, which radiates out through history like recurring fractals, providing further witness to these interconnections.

What has been is what will be, and what has been done is what will be done... there is nothing new under the sun.
(Ecc 1:9)

Monday 15 September 2014

The New Fatima Revelation in Closer Detail (Part One)

Sr. Lucia with Dom Jose Alves Correia da Silva, the Bishop of Leiria, in 1946

The recently published text detailing the apparition of the Blessed Virgin Mary to Sr. Lucia at her convent in Tuy, Spain, on 3rd January 1944, accords with an earlier account of the transmission of the secret given by renowned Fatima scholar Frere Michel de la Saint Trinite (the pen name of Dom François Marie Velut O. Carth, the Prior General of the Carthusians):

The dramatic account of the writing down and the transmission of this vital Message begins in 1943. The hour of providence had then struck. Sister Lucy was living at that time in the convent of the Dorothean Sisters of Tuy, in Spain. In June, 1943, she suddenly fell gravely ill. Her condition was so alarming that Bishop da Silva, the Bishop of Leiria, became worried. He feared that she would die before having revealed the Third Secret of Our Lady and he sensed that it would be the loss of an exceptional grace for the Church. Canon Galamba, the friend and advisor of the Bishop, then suggested to him an extremely judicious idea, that he at least ask Sister Lucy to write down forthwith, the text of the Third Secret and then that she place it in an envelope sealed with wax, to be opened later.
On September 15, 1943, Bishop da Silva went, therefore, to Tuy and he asked Sister Lucy to write down the Secret “if she really wanted to.” But the seer, undoubtedly under the impulse of the Holy Spirit was not content with this vague order. She requested of her Bishop a written order, formal and perfectly clear – that is very important. The final Message of the Virgin of Fatima is, as previously were Her other requests, linked to marvelous promises. It is an exceptional grace offered by God to our 20th Century in order to meet its most urgent needs. But again it is necessary that the pastors of the Church have sufficient faith and docility to the designs of Heaven in order to be instruments of this outpouring of grace that God wants to bestow upon the world through the sweet mediation of His Immaculate Mother. In 1943, God desired that it be the Bishop of Leiria, who demanded of this messenger the writing down of the Third Secret.
In mid-October, 1943, Bishop da Silva made up his mind. He wrote to Sister Lucy, giving her the express order that she had besought of him. However, new difficulties would arise. Sister Lucy experienced at that time, for almost three months, a mysterious and terrible anguish. She has related that each time she sat down at her work table and took her pen in order to write down the Secret, she found herself obstructed from doing it. One must, no doubt, see there the last outburst of satan against the messenger of the Immaculate One. Guessing what a terrible weapon this great prophecy could set up against his dominion over souls and his plan to penetrate the very heart of the Church, such a trial endured by the seer thus indicated the magnitude of the grandiose event which was about to be carried out, should the Secret be put down on paper. On Christmas Eve, Sister Lucy confided to her director that she had still been unable to obey the order that she had been given.
Finally, on the 2nd of January, 1944, (this is very little known) the Blessed Virgin Mary Herself appeared again to Lucy. She confirmed to her that such was truly the Will of God and gave her the light and the strength to accomplish the writing that had been commanded.
The extreme care that Sister Lucy then took to transmit it with complete safety to its recipient, Bishop da Silva, is a new proof of the exceptional importance which she attributes to this document. She did not wish to entrust it to anyone but a Bishop. It was Bishop Ferreira, Archbishop of Gurza, who received from the hands of Sister Lucy, the envelope sealed with wax containing the precious document. He delivered it the same evening to Bishop da Silva.

(This account was given by Frere Michel in an address at the Vatican Symposium on Fatima on 24th November, 1985. We now know that the apparition took place on 3rd January, and not the 2nd. See the full account here)
This version of events is further confirmed by the official Message of Fatima document released by the Church, which states that Sr. Lucia had written down the content of the Third Secret after the express order of the Bishop of Leiria and the Virgin Mary herself - confirming that the Blessed Mother did indeed appear to Sr. Lucia on 3rd January, 1944, in order to encourage her to commit the secret to writing: 

The third part of the "secret" was written by "order of His Excellency the Bishop of Leiria and the Most Holy Mother..." on 3 January 1944.
(The Message of Fatima)

Combined with the fact that this newly released text concerning the apparition of the Blessed Virgin to Sr. Lucia was published by the Carmel of Coimbra itself, there can be no doubt as to the authenticity of this vision. And there can similarly be no doubt that the content of this vision is directly related to the Third Secret itself. As such, it should be worth inspecting this newly published private revelation given to Sr. Lucia in some closer detail:

Towards 16:00 hours on January 3rd, 1944, in the convent’s chapel, before the Tabernacle, Lucia asked Jesus to let her know His will: ‘I then feel that a friendly hand, affectionate and maternal, touches my shoulder.’

It is ‘the Mother of Heaven’ who says to her: ‘be at peace and write what they command you to, but not that which you were given to understand about its meaning,’ intending to allude to the meaning of the vision that the Virgin herself had revealed to her.

Right after – says Sr. Lucia – ‘I felt my spirit flooded by a light-filled mystery which is God and in Him I saw and heard: the point of the flame-like lance which detaches, touches the axis of the earth and it [the earth] shakes: mountains, cities, towns and villages with their inhabitants are buried. The sea, rivers and clouds leave their bounds, they overflow, flood and drag with them into a whirlpool, houses and people in a number unable to be counted; it is the purification of the world from the sin it is immersed in. Hatred, ambition, cause destructive wars. Afterward I felt in the increased beating of my heart and in my spirit a quiet voice which said: ‘in time, one faith, one baptism, one Church, Holy, Catholic, Apostolic. Heaven in eternity!’ This word, ‘Heaven,’ filled my heart with peace and happiness, so much so that, almost without realizing it, I continued to repeat for some time: Heaven, Heaven!’

The first thing of note in this text is that we know that the Third Secret was written down on the exact same day as this apparition, since Sr. Lucia dated the bottom of her letter reprinted in The Message of Fatima as follows: "Tuy-3-1-1944". So the imagery of this vision is quite evidently related to the Third Secret itself.

Another far more important detail that this text provides us with is that while Sr. Lucia was instructed by the Virgin Mary to write down what Bishop da Silva had ordered her to (the content of the third part of the Secret seen by the three shepherd children on 13th July, 1917), she was also told not to write down the vital meaning of the vision that the Blessed Virgin had revealed to her. This clearly suggests that while the text published in the year 2000 is indeed the complete Third Secret witnessed by the shepherd children in 1917, and that there is no hypothetical "Fourth Secret", Sr. Lucia did not include the meaning of the vision in this particular text. 

This would imply that Sr. Lucia had written down the interpretation of the vision given by the Blessed Mother in a different text at some later point, confirming the two-text hypothesis of Fatima scholar Solideo Paolini - that the "attachment" to the Third Secret it is not actually part of the Secret itself, but rather an interpretation of the visions contained in the Secret, which if made by Sr. Lucia herself, could theoretically be flawed (since there are considerable difficulties in distinguishing between material that is truly of Divine inspiration from the personal convictions of the seer, as was discussed in Cardinal Ratzinger's theological commentary in The Message of Fatima). It also explains exactly why there were two envelopes bearing content related to the Third Secret - Our Lady herself had instructed to Sr. Lucia to write down the content of the vision seen in 1917, and to keep this separate from the meaning of the Secret that had been revealed to her by the Blessed Virgin. Given that the interpretation of the Secret should of course be considered as a separate entity from the Secret itself, this would explain why the Vatican authorities and Sr. Lucia herself were correct in insisting that the Secret of Fatima has been published in full. When Sr. Lucia was asked by Archbishop Bertone: "Is this the Third Secret, and is this the only text of it?" She replied "Yes, this is the Third Secret, and I never wrote any other'." (Bertone, T, The Last Secret of Fatima, p64) 

It would seem then that the Third Secret of Fatima has indeed been published in its entirety - it is the interpretation of the visions contained in the three parts of the Secret that is most likely still being withheld, and it is this text which is the content of the envelope kept in a cabinet inside the Papal Apartments, as described by Mgr. Capovilla (which is distinct from the text of the Third Secret that is known to have been kept in the secret archives of the Holy Office). 

In his recent blog post concerning this new text related to the Third Secret, Antonio Socci informs us that Solideo Paolini wrote to the Carmel of Coimbra in June of this year, asking them if Sr. Lucia ever wrote down the interpretation of the Secret - which this text explicitly informs us that the Virgin Mary revealed to her. Socci tells us that to date, Paolini still has not received a response from the Carmel, which is more or less what was expected, since to admit such would be tantamount to confirming the existence of the proposed "attachment" to the Third Secret, which is the central thesis of the "Fatimist" movement. It would be almost unthinkable that Sr. Lucia would not have been instructed by Our Lady to commit the interpretation of the Secret to writing at some point later, since it is self-evident that this would provide the key to understanding the visions as a whole.

In my book Unveiling the Apocalypse: Prophecy in Catholic Tradition, I argue that the real reason this "attachment" to the Third Secret was not made public alongside the text that was published in the year 2000, was because it contained precise details that related to specific dates in the future - dates which the Vatican would quite understandably be reluctant to confirm in advance. If for example, the interpretation of the Third Secret provided precise details along the lines of: "At the end of this century such and such will happen...", the Vatican would be embracing an almost impossible situation - effectively tying itself to the suggestion that a particular event would occur by an exact date, decades before said event was due to take place. Cardinal Loris Capovilla, who was secretary to St. John XXIII, confirmed that the Holy Father had refused to publish the Third Secret (or its interpretation) by the stipulated date of 1960 because he thought it might not be "entirely supernatural" (i.e. some of its content might be Sr. Lucia's own interpretation), and more importantly that it did not want to risk an "immediate interpretation" (i.e. an interpretation given in 1960) because the text contained "minute precisions" (which most likely pointed to a later date).

"Pope John imposed the silence for two reasons: (1) it did not seem to him to consist entirely of things supernatural,‘ (2) he did not dare to risk an immediate interpretation, in the midst of the complex Fatima phenomenon,‘prescinding from minute precisions'
(Mgr. Loris Capovilla, cited in Cited in Socci, A. The Fourth Secret of Fatima, p154)

"Minute precisions" can only mean that this text contains highly specific details such as dates, or the names and locations of particular events or individuals that relates to a certain point in time. We know that Sr. Lucia was not adverse to date-setting, since she was told that Secret should be published by 1960 - as then it would be "better understood". So it is not altogether unlikely that the interpretation of the Secret would mention a specific date in the future as well. The Vatican itself stated that the Third Secret would not be published in 1960 because it did not want the responsibility of guaranteeing the veracity of the words that the Virgin Mary addressed to the shepherd children - which also suggests the inclusion of such specifics:

"Although the Church recognizes the Fatima apparitions She does not desire to take the responsibility of guaranteeing the veracity of the words that the three shepherd children said that the Virgin Mary had addressed to them."
(Vatican communiqué of 8th Feb, 1960. Cited in De la Sainte Trinite, M. The Whole Truth About Fatima Vol. III pp578-586)

This means that the Secret must have contained some specific details about future events, rather than being vague or open to interpretation; and that the Vatican simply could not afford to stake its credibility on guaranteeing in advance that the contents of this prophecy would take place at the prescribed date. The most telling clue that the "attachment" contains an exact date however, is the reason Pope St. John XXIII gave as to why he would not publish the Third Secret by 1960 - because it did not concern the years of his pontificate:

Pope John XXIII announced that he was not releasing the secret at the date specified by Sr. Lucia because it “does not concern the years of my pontificate” 
(cited in De la Sainte Trinite, M. The Whole Truth About Fatima Vol. III p557)

How could St. John XXIII have possibly known that the content of the Secret or its interpretation did not refer the years his pontificate, unless it contained reference to a date in the future well outside his expected life-span. As I suggest in my book, and in the earlier post The Third Secret and the Turn of the Millennium, it seems that the date mentioned in the "attachment" is the end of the 20th century, and that the events described in it are directly related to struggle of the Woman Adorned with the Sun against the Devil - which is marked by the appearance of the "signs in heaven", and all of which did indeed take place at the turn of the millennium. This would explain Pope St. John Paul II's apparent fixation with the Great Jubilee Year 2000, which he repeatedly harked to from the very beginning of his career as pope, describing it as "a hermeneutical key of my Pontificate" (Tertio Millennio Adveniente, 23). 

As I have already noted in the earlier post John Paul II: The Triumph of Mary and the Great Jubileein his book The End of Time: Faith and Fear in the Shadow of the Millennium, prominent Catholic journalist Damian Thompson stated that the late Pope's underscoring of the symbolic significance of the turn of the millennium "frequently gives the impression that he knows more than he is letting on" (p172). Writing in 1996 - four years before the publication of the Third Secret, Thompson goes on to suggest that the Pope's level of regard for the turn of the millennium may be attributed to his knowledge of the Third Secret of Fatima (pp173-174).

We can find many examples of St. John Paul's apparent obsession with the prophetic importance of the Great Jubilee Year 2000, one of the most striking of which was made during a prayer service the Pope held at the Spanish Steps on 8th Dec, 1983 - the exact same day the Holy Father issued his now famous "apocalyptic" address announcing his intention to carry out the Act of Entrustment of the world to the Immaculate Heart of Mary in an apostolic letter, again mentioning a specific "precision" related to the turn of the millennium:. 

Precisely at the end of the second millennium
there accumulate on the horizon of all mankind
enormously threatening clouds, and darkness falls
upon human souls. 

The primary intention of this prayer was a request for the Virgin Mary to overcome evil - alluding to the moment when the Woman Adorned with the Sun would crush the head of the Ancient Serpent:

O Mary! Be the Mother of our liberation from every evil: 
From the evil that overburdens man's conscience,
and from that evil which always more threateningly obstructs
the horizon of our century
(The full English text of this prayer can be found here. The original document can be found in Italian on the Vatican website here.)

So it seems apparent then that not only did St. John Paul link the importance of the Great Jubilee Year with the prophecies of Our Lady of Fatima, but also with the struggle of the Woman Adorned with Sun against the Devil foretold in the Apocalypse - which tells us that Satan would be thrown down to earth (Rev 12:9) and transfer his great power and authority to the Beast that rises from the sea (Rev 13:2). An event which would be marked on earth by a series of phenomena that correspond to the "signs in heaven" (an earthquake, solar and lunar eclipses, a meteor shower, a planetary conjunction which recalls the Star of Bethlehem as the "sign of the Son of Man", as well as the appearance of some sort of disastrous spectacle which involves "blood, fire, and columns of smoke" cf. Rev 6:13-14, Matt 24:29-30, Joel 2:28-31).

Sr. Lucia herself gave some insight into the meaning of the Secret of Fatima during an interview with Fr Augustin Fuentes in 1957, which specifically identifies it with the combat between the Dragon and the Woman Adorned with the Sun in Rev 12, when Satan drags down a third of the stars from heaven. Note that the below words are strikingly similar to Pope Benedict XVI's contention (outlined during his pilgrimage to Fatima in 2010) that the content of the Third Secret can be related to the sexual abuse crisis in the Catholic Church - which is also highly suggestive of Satan dragging a third of the stars from heaven:

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.
That which afflicts the Immaculate Heart of Mary and the 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...

“Father, the Blessed Virgin did not tell me that we are in the last times of the world, but I understood this for three reasons:

“The first is because she told me that the Devil is engaging in a battle with the Virgin, a decisive battle. It is a final battle where one party will be victorious and the other will suffer defeat. So, from now on, we are either with God or we are with the Devil; there is no middle ground.

“The second reason is because she told me, as well as my cousins, that God is giving two last remedies to the world: the Holy Rosary and devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. And, being the last remedies, that is to say, they are the final ones, means that there will be no others.

“And the third, because in the plans of the Divine Providence, when God is going to chastise the world He always first exhausts all other remedies. When He sees that the world pays no attention whatsoever, then, as we say in our imperfect way of talking, with a certain fear He presents us the last means of salvation, His Blessed Mother.

If we despise and reject this last means, Heaven will no longer pardon us, because we will have committed a sin that the Gospel calls a sin against the Holy Spirit. 

It is worth comparing these words with Pope Benedict's comments on the Third Secret below:

Father Lombari:

You were asked if the message could be extended, beyond the attack on John Paul II, to other sufferings on the part of the Popes. Is it possible, to your mind, to include in that vision the sufferings of the Church today for the sins involving the sexual abuse of minors?

...Holy Father:

As for the new things which we can find in this message today, there is also the fact that attacks on the Pope and the Church come not only from without, but the sufferings of the Church come precisely from within the Church, from the sin existing within the Church. This too is something that we have always known, but today we are seeing it in a really terrifying way: that the greatest persecution of the Church comes not from her enemies without, but arises from sin within the Church, and that the Church thus has a deep need to relearn penance, to accept purification, to learn forgiveness on the one hand, but also the need for justice.
(Interview of the Holy Father Benedict XVI with the journalists during the flight to Portugal)

If we view the words of Sr. Lucia during her interview with Fr. Fuentes alongside the text of Rev 12, we are left in no doubt that she believed that in 1957, the world was on the cusp of the fulfillment of the prophecy of the struggle of the Woman Adorned with the Sun against the Dragon of the Apocalypse: 

And a great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars. She was pregnant and was crying out in birth pains and the agony of giving birth. And another sign appeared in heaven: behold, a great red dragon, with seven heads and ten horns, and on his heads seven diadems. His tail swept down a third of the stars of heaven and cast them to the earth. And the dragon stood before the woman who was about to give birth, so that when she bore her child he might devour it.
(Rev 12:1-4)

As Sr. Lucia stated, only one side would be victorious in this War in Heaven - which is a direct reference to the point when Satan would be defeated by the Archangel Michael, and cast down from heaven to the earth, whereupon he begins one last assault against the Church by transferring his great power and authority to the Antichrist. 

In addition to Sr. Lucia linking the Secret of Fatima to the eschatological struggle of the Woman Adorned with the Sun against the Devil, there is Cardinal Bertone's conviction that the "signs in heaven" described in the Bible was directly related to the events of 9/11. As we have noted previously, Cardinal Bertone made the following statement to the Italian journal La Republica upon returning from officiating at Sr. Lucia's funeral Mass in 2005:

"prophecy must always be interpreted: It is enough to think of the Apocalypse, of the signs in heaven. Have these perhaps not already been seen with the airplanes that toppled the Twin Towers?"

It is highly unlikely that Cardinal Bertone would have come to this conclusion by himself. The fact that he made this suggestion in the wake of Sr. Lucia's funeral Mass suggests that the real inspiration for his connection between the signs in heaven and the events of 9/11 was rooted in something communicated to him by the seer of Fatima herself. In this regard, it is of specific interest that on 26th October, 2001, the respected Catholic news publication Inside the Vatican claimed that Sr. Lucia had sent a letter to Pope St. John Paul II almost immediately after the attacks on the Twin Towers had taken place. There was a rumour that this text contained a warning that the pope's life was in danger.  When questioned about this correspondence, the then Bishop of Leiria-Fatima, Serafim de Sousa Ferreira e Silva: “did not deny that Sister Lucia had sent a letter to the Pope, but said [drawing a very precise distinction] ‘there are no letters from the seer that express fear for the life of the Pope.’” (See chapter 5 of Christopher Ferrera's book The Secret Still Hidden, which can be found online here). 

The reception of this letter by Pope St. John Paul II was quickly followed by the dispatch of Archbishop Bertone (then Secretary for the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith) to visit Sr. Lucia in the Carmel of Coimbra on 17th November, 2001, who conducted a two-hour interview with the seer in the presence of Rev. Luis Kondor, SVD, Vice-Postulator of the cause of Bl. Francisco and Bl. Jacinta, and the Prioress of the Carmelite Convent of Coimbra. The interesting thing to note here is that Archbishop Bertone had already conducted an interview with Sr. Lucia on 27th April, 2000, just before the publication of the Third Secret, and should have at this stage already acquired everything he needed to know about this text before it was made available to the public. So this follow-up interview was in all likelihood related to a current development, and was made in direct response to the letter Sr. Lucia sent to Pope St. John Paul II in the wake of the attacks on the World Trade Center. And whatever Sr. Lucia told Archbishop Bertone during this subsequent interview appears to have been the primary influence on his remarks following the seer's funeral Mass. 

The only possible way that the events of 9/11 could be interpreted as being related to the "signs in heaven" prophesied in the Bible is if we are to equate them with the "blood, fire and columns of smoke" foretold in the Book of Joel, which we are told accompany the astronomical phenomena that herald the eschatological outpouring of the Holy Spirit during the Second Pentecost:

“And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my Spirit on all flesh; your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, and your young men shall see visions. Even on the male and female servants in those days I will pour out my Spirit.
“And I will show wonders in the heavens and on the earth, blood and fire and columns of smoke. The sun shall be turned to darkness, and the moon to blood, before the great and awesome day of the LORD comes. And it shall come to pass that everyone who calls on the name of the LORD shall be saved. 
(Joel 2:28-32)

As we have already noted several times previously, each of the other "signs in heaven" described in the Bible did indeed occur around the turn of the millennium - which included a highly symbolic solar eclipse on 11th August, 1999, which traversed an area in Turkey close to the location of the seven churches of Asia Minor (including Pergamum - the "throne of Satan"), which was soon followed by a major earthquake in the same area just days later at the city of Izmit, on August 17th, 1999. The path of this same eclipse also passed directly through the city of Mosul in Iraq - the site of ancient Nineveh, alluding to the mysterious "sign of Jonah" mentioned by Christ immediately after his discourse on the binding of Satan in Luke 11. Three months later, the 33 year cycle of the Leonid meteor storm took place - which is the most prolific of all meteor showers. Then the first lunar eclipse, or "blood moon" of the new millennium took place between 20th-21st January 2000 - the anniversary of the appearance of Our Lady of Zion to Marie-Alphonse Ratisbonne (which links the grace poured out from the hands of Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal to the future conversion of the Jews/the sealing of the 144,000). Then on 5th May, 2000, an extremely rare planetary conjunction involving each of the seven planets known to the ancients, which echoes the seven stars held in the right hand of Jesus - described in Rev 1:18 as being "the keys to Death and Hades". (See the earlier post The Seven Wandering Stars and the Heads of the Dragon)

In the next post, we will look again at how the Angel of the Seven Thunders in the Book of Revelation is related to the angel of the Third Secret, and how this prophecy can be used to identify New York City as the "great city that has dominion over the kings of the earth" described in Rev 17:18 - the city seen by Sr. Lucia being destroyed by a tsunami just before she wrote down the Third Secret. It is this future event which is prefigured in by the "harbinger" of 9/11, which is so closely connected to the "signs in heaven" and the lingering mystery surrounding the Third Secret of Fatima.