Fatima scene installed at IHM convent

Bishop Carl A Kemme blessed the Fatima scene, located on the grounds of the Immaculate Heart of Mary Sisters, on Tuesday, May 7. The statues are made of marble and were carved in Florence, Italy. (Photo courtesy Wayne Mikols)

Those who visit the Immaculate Heart of Mary Motherhouse property south of Colwich may now contemplate one of the angelic Fatima apparitions while praying the rosary.

The sisters have installed four statues on their property depicting the third visit of the Angel of Peace to Lúcia, Jacinta, and Francisco in 1916, a prelude to the visits of before the Blessed Virgin at Fatima in 1917.

Lúcia dos Santos, left, with her cousins Francisco and Jacinta Marto in 1917. (Photo credit, Joshua Benoliel, www.santuario-fatima.pt)

Mother Cecilia Marie said a significant aspect of the IHM charism is devotion to Our Lady, in particular, her Immaculate Heart, something the Blessed Virgin revealed to the children in June 1917.

“The main message of Our Lady at Fatima is prayer for the conversion of sinners. The Angel is sent to prepare the children to receive Our Lady’s message of prayer and offering sacrifices for the conversion of sinners,” she said. “Our prayer apostolate is directed toward praying for the conversion of sinners, as well as adoration of Our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament.”

Mother Cecilia Marie said Mother Mary Magdalene, who was the General Superior of the IHM Sisters at that time, initiated the project when the three-year Eucharist Revival was launched.

The National Eucharistic Revival is a three-year initiative by the U.S. bishops designed to inspire, educate, and unite the faithful in a more intimate relationship with Jesus in the Eucharist. It began on June 19, 2022, the Feast of Corpus Christi.

The angelic scene was installed not only for contemplation and veneration but also for the Sisters the faithful, in particular those who take part in the processions and retreats held at the motherhouse property.

IHMs relate to Fatima message

“As Sisters of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, we find a lot of resonance with the message of Our Lady of Fatima,” Mother Cecilia Marie said. “Prayers, sacrifice, adoration of Our Lord, prayers for the conversion of sinners were emphasized by our father founder in 1848.”

The Venerable Joaquin Masmitjá, who was born in Spain in 1808, founded the IHMs.

“Those are the things that we’re all called to do as a church militant,” she said.

The prayer the angel teaches the children is pertinent today when belief in the Eucharist is waning, she said.

Angel prayed with the children

Leaving the chalice suspended in the air, the angel knelt beside the children and made them repeat three times:

“Most Holy Trinity, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, I offer Thee the most precious Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Jesus Christ, present in all the tabernacles of the world, in reparation for the sacrileges, outrages, and indifferences by which He Himself is offended. And through the infinite merits of His Most Sacred Heart, and the Immaculate Heart of Mary, I beg of Thee the conversion of poor sinners.”

Mother Cecilia Marie said the prayer reflects part of their spirituality. Through our own adoration, we can offer reparation to Our Lord in Eucharist, the Sacrament of His Enduring Love.

The statues are made of marble and were carved in Florence, Italy. Cody Swanson, sculptor, when contacted said, “I would like to offer my most sincere thanks to the Sisters of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. It was an honor of a lifetime to sculpt this work and I hope it will help the faithful to feel closer to the Lord and inspire veneration of the Eucharist.”