Chapter 1

Introduction

Third Secret Mosaic 121512

The greatest secret in the last 1000 years is the Third Secret of Fatima. 

The greatest public miracle in the last 1900 years is the Dance of the Sun at Fatima.

At noon on May 13 1917, the Madonna appeared to three shepherd children in Fatima Portugal and promised to return at the same time for the next five months on the same day. At the third of the apparitions, the children asked for a sign so that people would believe that the Madonna was appearing to them. The Madonna promised to perform a public miracle three months later at noon on the 13th of October. At the same apparition, the Madonna gave the children a message which was to be opened in 1960. That message came to be known as the Third Secret of Fatima. 

Three months later, seventy thousand people gathered to see the miracle. Some had walked for days. At noon solar time, a heavy rain abruptly ceased. The clouds parted like curtains. The sun came out and performed an explosive and ferocious dance in the sky, dropping three times to tree top level. People fell to their knees in the mud and cried for mercy. Many thought it was the end of the world. When it was over, the ground was dry and their clothes were fresh and clean as if they had come from the laundry.   

Four decades passed. In 1960, The pope opened the sealed envelope, and read the twenty line letter from the Madonna. He turned pale, and declined to reveal the secret. The secret is widely thought to include a warning about a world wide calamity if the pope did not perform an action which he believed the Soviet Union would regard as an act of war.

Five more decades pass. A St Louis history professor inherits a box of letters which includes correspondence to her aunt from Lucy, the last survivor of the Fatima miracle. In reading the letters, the professor takes an interest in learning about the secret. She is surprised to learn that much information about the secret lies scattered about like pieces of a mosaic. Since 1960, the popes and their nearest collaborators have read the secret. Here and there a part of the secret has been revealed. She proceeds to put the pieces together.

The finished product threatens to change the course of history for good or evil.

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Chapter 2

A Cousin in Portugal

A Cousin in Portugal

   Catherine Patricia Obrien was an irish american history teacher at St Louis  University. Her nickname from childhood was Cap. In August 2016 she visited a cousin in Dublin. While Cap was visiting, the dublin cousin received notice that a great aunt had died in lisbon portugal. Cap and the cousin attended the funeral. After the wake, the family discussed what to do with the aunts papers and letters. In the chest were photos of family, many of the oldest they did not know. Letters to and from friends and relatives. And a large bundle of letters from Sister Mary Lucy of Jesus of the Immaculate Heart. Her aunt who had been a nun but illness had forced her to live outside the convent. One of the cousins knew that the aunt had had a connection with the apparition of Mary at a place called Fatima. Cap had never heard of Fatima. 

   It was decided that since the american cousin was actually the nearest relative most likely to read the letters, the papers should go to her. No one else was interested in them. Out of respect for the dead, someone had to wade through the papers. As the scholar of the group, the lot fell to her. She didn’t mind. Old papers held an allure for her. They belonged to a different realm. Old letters were doors to the past. Old letters were the pathway of historical understandings. Important issues sometimes hinged on a single letter.  Old letters embodied the spirit of patience. In a world where so much had to be done by deadline, old papers didn’t mind waiting another year or another decade. 

    The rest of the family were urban professionals who like just about everybody else in europe had left the faith behind. It was still practiced in the countryside but the old churches in the cities were mostly empty, Relics of a departed era.

   Back in Dublin, she took a walking tour of the city. She came across a picturesque little bookstore. Being a scholar, she loved the smell of old books. They had a perfume which spoke of the dignity and romance of learning. The nobility of the mind. While browsing its aisles, she turned a corner and at the edge of her vision a book called to her. For a moment, it seemed like the title glowed and then withdrew. She excused her excited dancing imagination. On a second trip down the aisle, she saw it again. The title stood out clearly. The letters spelled Fatima. She remembered the name. She purchased it a price which indicated that it was not much sought after. But it had a sturdy leather binding and yellow pages.  On the inside flap, were written kind words of endearment from a giver to a recipient. It had been a gift of lover. Both parties were probably long departed. It was a good beginning.

    On the flight back, Cap had a chance to reflect on her family history. She looked out her window at the crimson edge of the receding western coast of Ireland. It was easy to think of it as a tapestry with all of the history of centuries written upon. So many pages that could be turned back in time. 

   In the early 1800‘s, one John Obrien had met a dark haired Portuguese beauty named Maria Iago and married her. She and her father had left Portugal to escape the turmoil of one of Portugal’s revolutionary episodes. A number of jews were prominent in the anti monarchist movement. In the aftermath, Portugal had become unpleasant place for her father. He had lost property and was happy not to have lost his life. He wanted to get as far away from the trouble as reasonably possible. He sailed for Ireland and for the nearest port, which was Cork. 

   Cork had a history of being a landing spot for windswept sailors. Situated in the south east corner of Ireland, it was the nearest port to southern europe and the Mediterranean. Here and there in the many sheltered inlets among the rocky coast could be found welcome patches of sand. In a violent storm, his boat steered for one of the many protected inlets south of cork. His boat was thrown by the surf upon the shore near a small village called Ross Carberry. The locals had a long history of harboring sailors. He liked the little village. He fit in and as he learned the language. Cork held the second highest concentration of Jews in Ireland. Dublin held the most. But he didn’t want to go upriver to Dublin. He was born near the coast and he wanted to stay near the coast. Also, he wanted to be able to leave easily if needed. The people of Cork had been treated among the worst by the british. There was an underlying sympathy for others who had been treated badly. Rebel Cork, as it had been called, could welcome a rebel as one of their own.

    John’s son Patrick attended the local school as his fathers had before him for more than a thousand years. Rich in antiquity, the area had a history which stretched back to the sixth century. Rosscarberry had been a university town when Ross priory was founded by St Fachnan. It had been one of the great european centers of learning.  There Patrick learned the classics and reveled in the local folklore. He took Sunday trips to Clíodhna's rock. Here, he heard many a wonderful tale of Cliodhna's enchantments, of wrecks and perils, and drownings and treasure. The wind was filled with stories.

   Cliodhna was queen of the fairy women of the hills. It is said that the wails of the banshee can be heard echoing the valleys and glens at night, amid the wind in the rocks of the coast. Many a soul had shivered at the sound of a wail carried in the wind. She had been a Danaan maiden once living in the Land of Youth beyond the sea. She landed on the coast with her mortal lover, Keevan of the Curling Locks. When Keevan went off to hunt in the woods, she stayed on the beach. She was lulled to sleep by fairy music. A great wave swept her up and carried her back to Fairyland, leaving her lover desolate. Hence the place is called the Strand of Clíodhna's Wave. In this harbor, the sea will sometimes use the wind and the waves to utter a deep, sad, otherworldly wail among the caverns of the cliffs. The locals say that the wail is Cliodhna and her sheoques come to look for Keevan. Sheoques are fairy women for whom the howling winds on the coastal rocks will sometimes play a sad lament which will open the door to the fairy world. Men will shudder deep in their bones when they hear those notes because sometimes the sheoques want to take back one of the children of men.

      A couple generations later, Michael Collins, whose mother was one of the O’Briens, would attend the same school and soak up the same stories. Michael had often been called the man who won the war for Irish independence.

   When Patrick was a young man, had helped a couple friends break out of jail. In the scuffle, a black and tan officer had been killed. He soon had a price on his head. As he skipped from one place to another, the locals affectionately nicknamed him Jack the leaper. It was fun for a while, but living on the run ages a person two years for every actual year. Under an assumed name, he took flight across the ocean highway, one of a million irish to do so in the mid century. In New England, he became an itinerant school teacher and later with the great mass of irish moved west to help build the canals and factories of western New York and then Ohio.

   Eventually, as the Irish and Germans moved west, they passed through Indiana. In the middle 1800’s, the Know Nothing party was popular in Indiana. The party was anti immigration and anti catholic. Immigrants were told to keep moving west. For this reason, in St Louis, the word hoosier is a derogatory term meaning low class person. One of those Irish was Patrick, Caps great grandfather.

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chapter 3

The Fatima Story

   The muffled roar of the engines reminded her of banshee wails.

She opened her case and pulled out the leather bound book on fatima. Her fingers touched the leather bookcase. She held it for a while. It was her habit to let her fingers make friends with a book. That it might open itself to her. She thought that it was not all about the mind. She had read as a girl that the ancient romans believed that objects had a will of their own. It was best to treat them with a measure of personal respect in order that they might correspond with her. Once the friendship was made, there was no longer a clear line between book and reader. 

    She began reading in the middle. Ever since she was a child, she would start reading by opening a book at random. Then after a couple minutes, she would usually begin the discipline of going to the beginning. At the end of her reading time, she would again open randomly the unread portion. When in later readings, she would come across the pages she had previously read, it was like meeting an old friend. The places, she had been there before. The people, she had met them before.

   In 1915, a little shepherd girl and her companions in Portugal saw a figure wreathed in white among the treetops. The next spring, the girl and her two cousins were visited by an angel. The angel looked liked a boy of fourteen, translucent and filled with light as a crystal water pitcher might look in the sunlight, but so much brighter. The oldest was Lucy who was nine. Her cousin Francisco was eight and his sister Jacinta was six. The angel commanded the children to pray with him. He prostrated himself on the ground. He said to pray a great deal, that Jesus and Mary would hear the voice of their supplications. They felt compelled to prostrate themselves on the ground. They remained on the ground repeating the prayers that the angel had taught them. Hours later, the boy noticed that dusk was settling in around them. Their sheep were patiently waiting to be taken home.

   The angel appeared to them again in the summer and once more in the fall. Asking for sacrifices and reparations for sins.

    The following year was 1917. At noon on May 13, the children were pasturing their sheep in a remote hollow among the hills outside of Fatima. They saw a flash of lightning and scurried to return home before a storm. There was a second flash and they were stunned to encounter a beautiful Lady.  

   She said that She was from heaven and that She wanted the children to come back to see her for the next five months at noon at the same place. She asked them to say the daily rosary. Before leaving, She enveloped them in a cloud in which they had a sense that they had seen God. They had seen themselves filled with light. 

The Second Apparition.

   On June 13, a few dozen people walked with the children to the Cova to see what would happen. Again at noon, they saw a  flash of lightning and small white cloud which came from the east and settled over the same holm oak tree. While the children were in ecstasy, some heard the sound of a distant voice, like the sound of a buzzing bee.

   Lucy said to the Lady, “Your Grace, what do you want of us?” The Madonna said,

    “I want you to come here on the thirteenth of next month and pray the rosary every day and I want you to learn to read. Later, I will tell you what I want.” Lucy asked for the cure of a sick person. The Madonna said, “If she is converted, she will be cured within a year.” 

To establish devotion to My Immaculate Heart.

    The Madonna told Lucy that Jesus wished to establish “devotion to My Immaculate Heart. To whoever embraces this devotion I promise salvation; These souls shall be dear to God, as flowers placed by me to adorn His throne.”

    Lucy said that "In front of the palm of Our Lady's right hand was a heart encircled by thorns which pierced it." "We understood that this was the Immaculate Heart of Mary, outraged by the sins of humanity, and seeking reparation."

 The light from Our Lady's palms "penetrated to our inmost hearts," said Lucy.

   Afterwards, the bystanders saw a white cloud drift off to the east and heard what sounded like a rocket in the distance.

She was all light.

Lucy said that the Lady seemed to be a real person of ineffable beauty. Her eyes were black. Her hands were “joined on top of the breast. From the right hand there hung a beautiful Rosary with white beads, brilliant as pearls, ending in a little cross of silver, which also sparkles. The feet... gently come down onto a little ermine cloud which comes over the green branches of the shrub.”

“The dress, which is snow white, falls right down to the feet... A white veil with edges adorned with fine braided gold, covers the head, the shoulders, and falling almost as low as the dress, envelops the whole body.” Two gold cords fell from the neck and were joined at the waist by a tassel. 

The Third Apparition.

   The next month, a crowd of 5,000 gathered at the place of the apparitions. When the children arrived, they knelt and began saying the rosary. Soon after, Lucy called out, “Shut your umbrellas. The Lady is coming.” The air cooled and the sun dimmed as if in an eclipse. A white cloud traveled from the east to the west and rested on the holm oak. A whitish cloud formed around the children.

   Lucy passed into ecstasy and asked “ What does your Grace want of me?” The Lady said “I want you to come here on the thirteenth of next month and continue to say the rosary every day in honor of Our Lady of the Rosary, in order to obtain peace for the world and an end to the war, for She alone can help.” Lucy asked, “ I would like to ask who you are and to perform a miracle so that people can believe that you are appearing to us.” The Lady answered, “Continue to come here every month and in October I will tell you who I am and what I want. And I will perform a miracle so that everyone may see and believe.”

   Lucy was heard to say “She wants people to recite the rosary. People must recite the rosary.” Then the Lady said “Sacrifice yourself for sinners and say often especially when you make some sacrifice: ‘O, my Jesus,

this is for love of You, for the conversion of sinners, and in reparation for offences against the Immaculate Heart of Mary.’

The Vision of Hell.

   The Lady opened Her arms. Light from her hands penetrated and opened the earth. The children beheld “a vast sea of fire. Plunged in this fire were demons and souls in human form, like transparent burning embers, all blackened or burnished bronze, floating about in the conflagration, now raised into the air by the flames that issued from within themselves together with great clouds of smoke, now falling back on every side like sparks in a huge fire, without weight or equilibrium, and amid shrieks and groans of pain and despair, which horrified us and made us tremble with fear. The demons could be distinguished by their terrifying and repulsive likeness to frightful and unknown animals, all black and transparent”. They saw a multitude of souls falling into hell “like snowflakes.” They were terrified. The Lady said to them, “You saw Hell where the souls of poor sinners go. 

   “In order to save them, God wishes to establish in the world devotion to My Immaculate Heart. If people will do what I ask, many souls will be saved and there will be peace. The war is going to end. But if people do not stop offending God, another even worse, will begin in the reign of Pius XI. 

Request for Consecration of Russia and the First Saturdays

   “When you see a night illuminated by an unknown light, know that this is the great sign that God gives that he is about to punish the world by means of war, hunger, and persecution of the Church and of the Holy Father. To prevent this, I will come to ask for the Consecration of Russia to My Immaculate Heart and the Communion of Reparation on the First Saturdays.

   “If people will attend to my requests, Russia will be converted and there will be peace. If not, Russia will spread it errors throughout the world, fomenting wars and persecution of the Church. The good will be martyred, the Holy Father will have much to suffer, and Various Nations will be Annihilated. 

   “In the end, My Immaculate Heart will triumph. The Holy Father will consecrate Russian to Me. It will be converted and a certain period of peace will be granted to the world.” She then asked the children to add to the end of each decade of the rosary “O, My Jesus, forgive us our sins. Save us from the fires of Hell and lead all souls to Heaven, especially those most in need.” Then there was a thunderclap. Lucy said “There she goes. There she goes.” And the little cloud disappeared in the east.

The Fourth Apparition.

   On the morning of the thirteenth of August, the children were taken away by the local administrator. Nearly 15,000 people at gathered at the site of the apparitions. At noon there was a great thunderclap, then a bright flash of light. A little white cloud came from the east and settled on the holm oak. It stayed a few minutes and then rose and disappeared. For a few minutes, the people noticed a strange light. 

   “While looking around us, we observed a strange thing, which we had already seen the previous time, and which we were going to see again in the future. The faces of the people had all the colors of the rainbow: pink, red, blue ... The trees did not appear to have branches and leaves but only flowers; everything seemed laden with flowers, and every leaf appeared to be a flower. The ground was covered with squares of different colors. Clothes were also of every color of the rainbow.”

The Fifth Apparition.

   On September 13th 1917, the crowd saw the same globe of light advancing from the east and settling on the holm oak. Then there was a rain of colored flower petals which disappeared as they reached the ground. Lucy called out “You must pray.” Thousands dropped to their knees and began to pray. Lucy asked the Lady “What do you want of me?” “I want you to continue to pray the rosary every day in order to obtain the end of the war. In October, Our Lord will come also and Our Lady of Sorrows and Our Lady of Mount Carmel and St Joseph with the Child Jesus to bless the world.” It was the shortest of the apparitions.

Sixth Apparition

  October 13, saw the last of the six apparitions. It was the day that the Lady promised to perform a miracle so that all could see and believe. A crowd of 70,000 had gathered in the field of the apparitions. Rain had fallen for three days. Lucy’s mother asked her to go to confession, because if there was no miracle, “We will all be killed.” Lucy said not to worry, that the Lady would keep her promise.

   Around noon solar time, Lucy called out ”Knell down. Our Lady is coming. I have seen the flash.” A mist enveloped the children to a height of about fifteen feet. “What do you want of me.” “I am the Lady of the Rosary. I would like a chapel built here in honor of Our Lady of the Rosary. Continue to pray the rosary every day. Men must amend their lives and ask for pardon. Do not offend God anymore, for He is already too greatly offended.”

Ominous Dance of the Sun

   As the Lady rose to leave, She threw light at the sun. The clouds parted abruptly and the sun appeared and was easy to look at. The sun began to spin. It radiated a multitude of sparks and colors. It began to move and rotate wildly. Three times it violently zig zagged almost to treetop level. The people were overwhelmed with fear. They cried and prayed aloud. They thought it was the end of the world. The crowd had been standing in ankle deep mud from three days of rain. Their clothing was soaked. Afterwards, they found that the ground was dry and their clothing was dry and clean, as if it had just been laundered. 

   Cap closed the book and thought to herself “why haven’t I heard of this.” She considered herself to be well informed. She was surprised that something of this magnitude had slipped by her. After taking a nap, Cap resumed reading. 

   At Fatima, The Madonna told the children that She would come back later to ask for the First Saturdays Devotion and the Consecration of Russia. She would do this to prevent war and suffering. In 1925, She returned to fulfill the first part of that promise. Lucy was an eighteen year old postulant of the Dorothean Sisters at their convent in Ponteverda, Spain. After supper on Thursday December 10, Lucy was visited by Our Lady. Beside her was the Child Jesus standing on a luminous cloud. Lucy’s cell was so small that the Madonna rested her hand on Lucy’s shoulder.

A Heart Encircled by Thorns. 

   Lucy later wrote in the third person, “And as She did so, She showed her a heart encircled by thorns, which She was holding in Her other hand. At the same time, the Child said ”Have compassion on the heart of your Most Holy Mother, covered with Thorns, with which ungrateful men pierce It at every moment. And there is no one make an act of reparation to remove them.”

   Then the Most Holy Virgin said, “Look, My daughter, at My Heart, surrounded with thorns with which ungrateful men pierce me at every moment by their blasphemies and ingratitude. You at least try to console me and announce in My name that I promise to assist at the moment of death, with all the graces necessary for salvation, all those who, on the first saturday of five consecutive months shall confess, receive Holy Communion, recite five decades of the Rosary, and keep Me company for fifteen minutes while meditating on the fifteen mysteries of the Rosary, with the intention of making reparation to Me.”

   Lucy communicated the request to her superiors. Little was done in response. 

The Request for the Consecration of Russia. 

 A few years passed, and the Madonna returned to fulfill the second part of her promise. On June 13 1929, Lucy was making a holy hour in the convent chapel between 11 pm and midnight. She would sometimes prostrate herself. Other times, she would knell with her arms in the form of a cross. While she was praying, a supernatural light illuminated the chapel. In the midst of a vision about the Holy Trinity, Our Lady of Fatima appeared. She held Her Immaculate Heart in her left hand, with a crown of thorns and flames. She said, “The moment has come when God asks the Holy Father, to make, with all the bishops of the world, the consecration of Russia to My Immaculate Heart, promising to save it by this means.”

   With sadness in Her eyes, the Madonna went on to say “So numerous are the souls which the justice of God condemns for sins committed against Me, that I come to ask for reparation. Sacrifice yourself for this intention and pray.” 

    The Madonna promised that if Her requests were honored, the next war would be avoided and that Russia would be converted and that all wars would cease. If not, She predicted that the next war would begin in the reign of Pius XI. 

   As Cap’s plane bounced along in the turbulence of the North Atlantic, she read about Lucy after the requests. In August 1931, Lucy was not in good health. The requests of heaven laid heavily upon her. She had been unsuccessful. She had been sent by her superiors to Rianjo, a small seaside town near Pontevedra, where she was to rest in a friendly house. It was there that Lucy had an apparition of Jesus. He said, “Make it known to My ministers that given that they follow the example of the King of France in delaying the execution of My request, that they will follow him into misfortune.”

 Soon after, the pope learned of the dual requests but did not act upon them. 

Like the King of France, it will be late. 

   A year later, Our Lord complained to Sister Lucy. “They did not want to heed my request. Like the King of France they will repent and do it, but it will be late. Russia will have already spread its errors throughout the world provoking wars and persecutions against the Church; the Holy Father will have much to suffer.”

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chapter 4

Begins Reading Letters

   About a two months after returning, life had settled down so that Cap could begin reading the letters. One night she pulled the box from it’s shelf in her library and began to look through the contents. First she arranged the letters in sequence of time order. Most of them were one or two handwritten pages. She spoke spanish and had studied portuguese for a year and a half. So she was able to follow the letters with the help of her portuguese dictionary.

   She had learned that the letters from Sister Mary Lucy of Jesus of the Immaculate Heart were from Sister Lucy of Fatima, the sole survivor of the three children at Fatima. Her young cousins had died in the influenza epidemic within two years of the apparitions. 

   The letters began in the mid 50‘s. Most of them began “My Dear Sister”  The first letter expressed Lucys sorrow that the aunt had been constrained to separate from the convent and the hope that she would be able to return. Cap’s cousins had told her that their Aunt had left the convent in order to receive medical treatment. After a period of time it became apparent that she would be a burden to the community. Illness kept her from returning. She kept her vows and maintained her prayer life and the rule of the order. She considered herself an absent member of the community. She led as cloistered a life as possible. She attended mass, spent many hours in prayer and helped the family with whom she stayed. After dinner she would sometimes help with the children and then spend the evening in prayer. She often fasted. She had the keys to the church. She would pray alone at night with just the light of the sanctuary candle on the altar next to the tablenacle.

   The first few letters were expressions of hope for the aunts recovery and ordinary stories about the life of the community. Cap’s portuguese was improving with practice. She had secured the tutoring of one of the teachers in the language department at the university. It was beginning to be transparent. 

   In one letter, Lucy recalled that the Madonna had appeared to her in May 1952. “Make it known to the Holy Father that I am still await the consecration of Russia to My Immaculate Heart. Without this consecration Russia can not be converted nor can the world have peace.”

   In another letter, Lucy said that she had learned of Our Lady of Syracuse. An image of the Madonna had begun to weep in the home of a working class family in the poorest district of Syracuse Sicily in 1953. The image showed the Madonna with her right hand over her flaming heart, pierced with thorns. 

    Months earlier, an artist had received an inspiration to sculpt such an image. He produced the original in three days. Molds were mass produced and left in the sun to dry for three days. and then varnished and painted. One had been given to the Iannuso family as a wedding gift. After a brief bout with blindness, the first thing that Antonina saw was the weeping image of Our Lady on her wall. The family did not at first believe Antonina that the picture was weeping. But then they saw it too. And soon the neighbors, and large crowds. Then the international media. 

   Returning from the fields, the young husband, Angelo, asked “Madonnina, why are you weeping?” The family hung the picture on the outside wall of the house for all to see. Many prayed and said the Rosary. Many were healed. On the fourth day, the tears stopped.

    Many wondered about the meaning of the tears. Lucy believed that the Madonna was sad because the requests of Her Immaculate Heart had not being attended too. Lucy too was saddened that there was a growing number in the vatican who were unsympathetic to the message of Fatima. There was a growing anti fatima and anti Marian movement. 

    The fifth letter had a change in tone. Lucy had received word that the Vatican had instructed the Bishop to send the Secret to Rome. Lucy was not consulted. Lucy feared that it would not be opened in 1960 and that it would not be released to the public.

  midnight. she sees a ghost, wall disappears.

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chapter 5

Interest Grows

As time went on, Cap’s interest in Fatima and Sister Lucy slowly began to grow. She had come home one day with the intention of reading the sixth letter. In her mail box was a letter from one of the Dublin cousins with more information about the origin of the friendship between their aunt and Sister Lucy. It had happened that in August 1931, Sister Lucy had not been in good health. Her superiors had sent her to a small seaside town city in northern Portugal, near the Spanish border. She was to take some rest in a friendly house. As weeks passed and she grew stronger, she helped with the catechism of local children. Their aunt was one of those local children. She reminded Lucy of Jacinta, her younger cousin and fellow visionary. Later their paths would cross again and their friendship renewed.

    The sixth letter was written in 1958 several months after the Secret had been transferred to the Vatican. Lucy feared that the secret would be buried. She knew that a considerable element in the Vatican was not sympathetic to the message of the Lady of Fatima. In 1925, the Lady had asked for the First Saturday Devotion. But the request had fallen on rocky ground. In 1929, Our Lady had requested the Consecration of Russia but it too had been ignored. 1931 would have been the ideal time to announce the First Saturday Devotion and an opportune moment for the Pope to call upon all the Bishops of the world to join with him in a public act of reparation and consecration of Russia to Her Immaculate Heart. 

    Had he done so, the Lady had promised that Russia would have been converted. A religious revival would have swept the communists from power. There would have been a worldwide conversion experience. And wars would have stopped. There would have been no world war II. No communist wars of liberation. No Cold War, no Korea, no Viet Nam.

    Lucy explained how she had been interviewed by the Postulator for the cause of the beautification of Jacinta and Francisco. She had been generally under instruction to be patient and quiet on the subject of Fatima. However, in the case of the beautification investigation, she was asked to give the postulator her complete cooperation. In the wide ranging discussion she had touched on a number of subjects which would later prove to be explosive.

    The postulator, Fr Augustine Fuentes, returned to Mexico. Soon after, he gave a conference to group of nuns. One of the sisters took notes which were later published. They stirred up a hornets nest. The Vatican believed that Lucy had trespassed into speaking about issues which were within the realm of the third secret.

   In the interview, Lucy expressed that the Virgin was sad that no one had paid much attention to her message. Lucy had warned that God would chastise the world in a terrible manner. That 1960 could be a very sad time if the world did not pray and do penance.

   There were elements in the Vatican who were biding their time during the last days of the pontificate of Pius XII. They hoped that the new Pope would initiate a rapprochement with the Soviet Union. They were angered that Lucy said that Russia would be the instrument of chastisement chosen by heaven to punish the whole world, and that many nations will disappear from the face of the earth. 

    It did not sit well with the reformers that Lucy had said that the Most Holy Virgin had lead her to deduce that theses were the last times of the world. Nor did they like it that Lucy had suggested that it was a sin against the Holy Spirit to reject the requests of Our Lady for the Consecration of Russia and for the First Saturday Devotions.

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chapter 6

A Second Lucy

   In the next few letters, Sister Lucy related how the Vatican had ordered that she was to be put under wraps. Her visitors were severely limited. Only the Vatican could write a permission slip to see her. Mostly just her family. Even they didn’t get to see her. A screen separated the visitors from the private areas for the cloister. They could hear but not seen the person they visited, except for a vague outline. In Lucys case, another sister was always present in those visits as a kind of chaperone. She said that she had become something like the man in the iron mask. No one could look upon her. 

    Early in his pontificate Pope Paul had removed the Index, the age old list of prohibited books. Now, only one person was effectively on the Index. When it came to Fatima, Lucy was the one person in Christendom who was forbidden to write and publish.

   A few months later Lucy wrote that her cloister had produced a Lucy substitute. It had happened by accident. One of the sisters on a public outing was mistaken for Lucy. The media wrote about it and the mother superior was prepared to negate the reports. Because it had to do with Sister Lucy, she had to submit the public statement to the nunciature for approval. He had been away for a few days. When he returned, she expected him to instruct her to release the report. To her surprise, he told her to wait. He wanted to consider it. which meant that he wanted to take it to his superiors. A couple weeks passed and she thought there must be some mistake. She wrote him for instructions thinking that in some lapse of attention, he had forgotten the issue. She was bewildered to read that he told her to do nothing. 

   A couple weeks later, orders came from the nunciature that the same Sister was to be given an assignment that would again bring her briefly into the spotlight. She was to be kept at a distance from the reporter who recognized her from her last visit. The reporter wrote a short article about her. A couple poor quality photos were produced. 

    Everyone on the outside accepted that she was Lucy. Even her family. It had been years since they had seen her. Her habit had changed. Her teeth had had a little work. She had put on some weight. She became the new Lucy. 

    Even in a cloister, the walls have ears. The Mother Superior was aghast. The risk was enormous. If found out, everyone would suffer in ways that could not be imagined. What could they be thinking. The cloister would be caught in a lie. And she was the one who would be blamed. It was inconceivable. But she was trained in obedience and she would say nothing. It would be her penance and her sacrifice. Soon after she was transferred. Lucy would never again be seen publicly.

    Lucy knew why this had been done. It made sense. Marian Devotion stood in the way of the quiet revolution which was transforming the Church from top to bottom.  In order to bury Mary’s message, they had to bury her messenger.

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chapter 7

Meeting Skinner

Cap wondered how this could be. She had tried without success to discretely inquire about Fatima from some of the Jesuit staff at the University. They all said about the same thing. The Church had moved on to dialogue with the modern world. To deal realistically with the problems which men and women faced in the every day world. It was time to adapt. Fatima belonged to the past. She had the sense that there was something going on here but she could not put her finger on it.

   Months passed and winter turned into spring. A friend told her about a retired Jesuit who had begun counseling in private practice in Dogtown only a couple miles away. She made an appointment. Father John Skinner was a thin almost frail man. He looked the part of a kind and knowledgeable teacher. When they met, he invited her to “call me Skinner. Everyone does.” He described himself as a conservative neanderthal Jesuit who held to a world view that belonged to the past. If she could accept that, he would be happy to speak with her about her concerns.

   She laid out her story, asking him to explain what was going on. He listened attentively. He had the air about him that he enjoyed listening to her. And that he enjoyed listening to her tell him about the history of their times. Soon it was time for his next appointment. He told her that he would think about what she had said and consider what to say and where to begin. He would see her in two weeks.

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chapter 8

Second Meeting Malachi Martin

    At their second meeting, Skinner asked what was new. She told him about some of Lucys letters from the sixties. She was appalled that the secret had not been revealed. She felt the world was on a downward path. He listened intently. He liked hearing about it. She asked him why. He said it had a ring of truth to it. 

    Skinner told her that for the last two weeks he had been thinking over what she had told him and he had come to the conclusion that it was best to begin with the Third Secret of Fatima. She was right to think that there was a pattern which she could not quite perceive. The key to what was going on her letters was the battle over the Third Secret. In fact, one could make the case that the whole of the last century was a backdrop for the third secret. All the important people were just straight men in a drama in which the third secret was the main event. If a thousand years from now, a student of history were to look at the past century, they would find that the third secret was the center of the web. Everything else related to it. 

    He told her the secret was supposed to have been revealed in 1960. He quoted Cardinal Ottaviani. “The Madonna wanted it to be published already in 1960.” Sister Lucy also said the Our Lady wanted it revealed in 1960. Everybody knew that it was supposed to be revealed in 1960. There was world wide expectation about. It was a big disappointment when it was not revealed. Marian devotion suffered a blow.

    “Let me tell you what we know about the secret. At the third apparition at Fatima in 1917, Mary showed the children a vision of hell. Then she spoke to them for a few minutes. Then she showed them another vision and spoke for another few minutes. They were called secrets because the children were not supposed to talk about them at the time. The Church has revealed the two visions and the first discourse but not the second. 

   “The vision of hell is the first secret. The first discourse is called the second secret. In it the Madonna requests the First Saturday Devotion and the Consecration of Russia. She promised that there would be peace if Her requests were granted. And that there would be trouble if not. 

   The second vision was revealed by the Church in 2001. It involves a bishop in white climbing a hill toward a cross amidst many bodies in a city half destroyed. Soldiers and a mob come out and kill him, and then begin killing the clergy and laity. 

   The discourse that followed it has not been revealed. The hierarchy is reluctant to admit that there even is such a discourse. That discourse is what is commonly called the Third Secret. 

   As Skinner opened his desk, he told Cap that he would like to read her the highlights of short article which would help to frame the discussion. It was about Father Malachi Martin, a brilliant Jesuit, who had read the Third Secret when he was a young assistant to Cardinal Bea. He was Bea’s assistant, during the time period in which John XXIII opened the sealed envelope, read the secret, and asked advice from a few of those who were closest to him. Martin later became disillusioned with the Jesuits and was released at his request. But he remained a priest in good standing. He said the Latin Mass everyday for the rest of his life. He wrote a few novels. One of them about exorcisms, another about the Vatican.

     Skinner began reading the article out loud. “In 1998 Martin gave a sensational interview on the Art Bell Show in which he provided a behind-the-scenes account of the Vatican and of the “war to the death” between progressivists and traditionalists. At a certain point the interviewer asked him about the Third Secret of Fatima, and the ecclesiastic, who claims that he read it precisely because of his closeness with Cardinal Bea, explained that its publication would be devastating: “It could be a shock...It could strike people in different ways. Some, if they came to know that this was really the Third Secret of Fatima, would be extremely angry.” These words leave one to think of the preannouncement of a catastrophe, but when the interviewer recalled the horrible planetary cataclysms contained in the document from Neues Europa and asked if the Secret is that traumatic, the response by Martin is: “Worse.” To the disconcerted journalist the ecclesiastic repeated: “Much worse...The central element of the Third Secret is terrifying...”

   “The interviewer then asked: “Are you telling me that what is contained in the Third Secret is more terrible that what i have just read?” “Oh yes. It is. Because what you have just read is, essentially the extermination by natural powers... It is as if nature is revolting against the human race. It is substantially what happens by means of these terrible catastrophes and chastisements. And this is not the essence of the Third Secret, not that which is more terrifying.”

It would fill confessionals on Saturday night.

   “Confronted by the astonished exclamation of the interviewer, Martin explained: “Yes. It goes beyond the imagination.” Reveal it? “It should be revealed,” “they were going to uncover it,”but “there is the problem of shock, of scandal, of terrifying people and mankind in general...I would like to be able to do it because a thing of this kind, so far as can humanly be foreseen, would give a shock, would terrify people, would fill confessionals on a Saturday night, would fill the cathedrals, the basilicas, and the churches with believers on their knees, beating the breasts.”

   “It is obvious that such a description of the Third Secret does not concern the vision revealed in 2000, but another text. Also because Father Martin adds: “The Secret was intended (by Heaven) for the people, not for the Pope or bishops, It was intended to be revealed in 1960, by the explicit order of Heaven...The Pope decided that it would be better if the world did not know it, contrary to the order of the Queen of Heaven, the order She gave to the Pope by means of the children: to publish it. Therefore, the will of God has not been done.” Father Martin was at pains to stress that it is not the Church which hides the prophecy, but “only the men of the Church, who are not faithful to their vocation.” (The distinction between the Church and the men who are a part of it is theologically correct.) He then added: “Pope John XXIII did not think that the Secret should be published in 1960. It would have ruined the negotiations that were taking place at that moment with Nikita Khrushchev, head of the Soviet state at that time. And besides he had a rather different vision of life, a vision that would be revealed clearly two years later, with the opening of the Council, during his discourse of October 11, 1962 in St. Peter’s before the assembled bishops... He mocked, disdainfully, those whom he called ‘prophets of doom.’ And there was no doubt among any of us that he was speaking of the three prophets of Fatima, toward whom he was hostile.” 

   “This notwithstanding, “the Secret,” Father Martin continued, “will one day be revealed and fulfilled. Only this time it will be painful... We cannot avoid it, it is too late. We can mitigate its effects somewhat if we know what it concerns... Pray, receive Holy Communion, recite the Rosary. But they will not be easy days, unfortunately.” Skinner folded the paper and looked at Cap. She was stunned. “If that is true, how could such a thing have been kept quiet.” He said that when people want to trust, they are easily misled.

   Skinner sighed. “Are you sure you want me to go on? This is difficult. It tends to upset one’s worldview.” “Yes, please go on.”

   “There is a French monk named Frere Michel, He has written three eight hundred page volumes about Fatima. If you have the time and the interest, you should tackle them. The volumes are extensively footnoted. They are a wealth of information. There is just one reference which is not footnoted. Michel claims it came from a reliable source. Sister Lucy said about the contents of the third secret, ‘It’s in the Gospel and in the Apocalypse, read them.’ On another occasion, she specifically referred to Chapter 8. Well, Chapter 8 is about opening the Seventh Seal and the Trumpets. 

Fire will fall from the sky.
   Skinner looked up from his reading and said “There is a case to be made that we will see these things soon fulfilled. Would you like to hear my take on them?“ She honored his invitation with a pause, as she reflected on what he had been saying. Then she carefully said “Please go on.” As a lecturer, she was as good at listening as she was at speaking. Here, her usual role was reversed. He was the teacher and she was the student.

     Skinner said “The first thing that happens is that the angel who stands before the altar of God, fills golden censor with fire from the altar and casts it on the earth. Then the First Trumpet precipitates a Hail of Fire which scorches a third of the earth, a third of the trees, and all green things.

    “The Second Trumpet is about a meteor striking the sea. When the second angel sounded his trumpet, something like a huge mountain, all ablaze, was thrown into the sea. A third of the sea turned red, A third of the living creatures in the sea died, and a third of the ships were destroyed. It would cause Tidal Waves and Flooding.

   “At the sound of the Third Trumpet, a great star fell from heaven, burning like a torch, and it poisoned a third of the rivers and on the springs of waters. The name of the star was Wormwood. The Ukrainian word for wormwood is Chernobly. So the name of the star is Chernobyl. It suggests that a radioactive meteor or a piece of the sun penetrates our atmosphere and poisons a third of the planet with radioactivity.

  “Well,” he exhaled. “That is about enough for today. Yes?” Cap agreed. She sunk back in her chair and asked him if he thought thought Martin was credible. Skinner answered that he thought that Martin was honest. “Everything of his which I have read holds together. He seems scrupulous. He still has kept his vow to keep the secret a secret. In my business, I listen to the points and the picture. Sometimes, it is in the picture that you see whether the person is seeking to tell the truth. “

   He knew that he had injured her world view. It was now less secure and more frightening. They made an appointment for two weeks later and said goodbye. She felt as if she wasn’t walking home on the same sidewalk on which she had come. Things had changed.  

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chapter 9

Destruction of New York

A couple days later, Cap had a full day of appointments. As she poured her first cup of morning coffee, she watched the mist rise from a gentle rain. It would help the flowers.       

    At the same time, several hundred miles away, a non descript freighter was approaching the three mile territorial limit near New York Harbor. It was a beautiful spring day. The ship sailed beneath a Malaysian flag.  As the ship reached the limit, the crew opened the hatch and brought a large container to the deck. Four of the ship’s crew worked to remove the top of the container. Then they removed the sides. 

    On the platform stood a large covered object which had barely fit within the width of the container. The four carefully removed the tarpaulin.  Sunlight reflected off the fuselage of a long white object which looked like a mix between a missile and an airplane. It had short wings half of which were folded in an vertical position. It had a propeller and a tail assembly. There was no pilot compartment.

    Two other workers proceeded to fold the wings down and lock them into place. Once in position, the wings were about four feet long. Shorter and wider than a normal wing. It was mounted on a rail and had rocket boosters on the back sides.

    The leader executed a series of instructions on an instrument panel mounted on the side of the platform. He leaned over to listen to a low murmur from inside the body of the aircraft. He plugged in his computer and typed additional instructions. He tested the aerilons, flaps and rudder. A motor was activated. Gears began to engage. Then there was the high pitched whine of activated hydraulics as the railing lifted the nose of the missile upward. At 60 degrees it locked into position, two thirds of the way toward upright. The leader clicked the start motor command. It coughed a few times and then rapidly jumped in rpm. The crew stepped back. The unmufflered exhaust was nearly deafening. The leader nodded toward one of his men who stepped forward and pulled a charging cable out of the wing. The leader then stepped away and quickly climbed the stairs to the wheelhouse. 

      In the distance, a boat that was approaching at high speed. The leader looked in the direction of the boat, and made a call on his cell phone. When the boat pulled up alongside, he make a few more keystrokes and looked down again at the body of the missile. It’s tip was nearly at eye level. He typed a final command and ducked momentarily beneath the instrument panel for protection. A couple seconds later a fire erupted beneath the missile. He listened to the roar of the aircraft as it lifted off. He looked up to see it climbing into the sky and beginning to level off. The crew was stunned. His own men rejoiced and raised there arms in victory celebration. They were nearly in disbelief at what they just done. The leader watched the missile trail away. He took just a moment to bask in the glow of their accomplishment. As the cheers faded, he then methodically hurried down the steps toward the speed boat. His men are already climbing into the boat. They left the crew unmolested. They had been instructed to leave them as witnesses.

    As he crossed the railing, deep within the interior of the freighter a second ignition system completed its program. A little green light blinked on the circuit board. A massive explosion ripped the freighter apart like a giant hand grenade. The sudden violent outburst blew torn metal in all directions. The shock wave created an enormous crater in the water. The speed boat was crushed like a matchbox. Then the spray of water and metal began falling back and the sea rushed in to fill the crater. Soon, there was nothing left but foam and splashing waves.  

   The missile flew at low altitude toward the city. From it’s vantage point, New York presented a beautiful sight. It’s building rose higher and higher into to sky as the aircraft approached. Soon off its side was the shore where the sea met the America Urban skyline at its apogee. This was its last minute. It would not look this way again in the lifetime of any living creature. Perhaps it would never look this way again, ever.

   At the Statue of Liberty, visitors looked up at the loud noise as the missile passed overhead. Further on, a few passengers on the ferry watched the aircraft fly overhead. They thought it odd that an aircraft was flying so low. It  passed briefly over the New Jersey before curving north to approach Manhattan from the west. 

    In its final seconds, it crossed the Hudson flying east. It struck the center of Manhattan at ground level. A storm of debris exploded for miles. The buildings collapsed as they fell toward the sea. Manhattan was tumbled and flattened.  The intense flash of the blast ricocheted down the avenues of windowed office buildings. The light was many times brighter than sunlight. Along the sidewalks of the shadowed corridors, pedestrians  suddenly found themselves bathed in light. Then everything was quiet. No one moved for having been stunned. Cars stopped. Engines stopped. Fans stopped. Walking stopped. For a moment, time was effectively frozen. Then out of the silence, someone yelled “Nuclear bomb. Run for the basements.”

   Two miles from the the center, the blast arrived in eight seconds and lasted for three seconds. Three miles away it hit in 12 seconds. The words were repeated Nuclear bomb. Men and women ran for their lives in parking garages and into lobbies and down the stair wells. Even after the explosion hit, there was a brief time before the whole weight of the building fell down on them. 

   Brooklyn and New Jersey were soon in flames. Bridges were down or damaged. Tunnels were cracked and leaking from the shockwave.  Marble sized drops of black rain began to fall.  

    Emergency services were overwhelmed. There was no way to approach the city. The roads were all blocked with heaps of debris and fallen buildings. Even as far as New Jersey, cars and trains were tossed about like toys. With the tunnels closed and bridges down, there was no way to reach the city.

    A cloud of radioactive dust drifted across coastal New Jersey, then northeast across Connecticut. Residents of Connecticut heard the explosion. Then there were sirens. They could see the mushroom cloud in the distance. Cell phones were out but word spread quickly and people could feel that a light breeze blowing from the south. The roads were soon clogged with people traveling as far as they could on what gas they had in their tank. Gas stations were soon out of gas.

   Ultimately, a large part of Connecticut and Massachusetts would be uninhabitable. The fallout zone would be two hundred miles long and sixty miles wide. A larger area would be unsafe for children or crops. The worst areas would be radioactive for a thousand years.

Ghost Walkers.

   In the tumble of buildings, there were few survivors. In the subways, the trains stopped. The trains were noisy as they moved along. Then suddenly they came to a stop, the tunnels were quiet.  Emergency lighting systems came on. In the dim light, passengers disembarked and began walking toward the nearest platform. They could see in the distance that the platforms were shrouded in a thick mist. They could hear coughing and crying. Coming closer they heard the word explosion. The cloud was getting thicker and pouring into the tunnel. They met people walking away from the platform. 

   The two groups met and spoke briefly. The group from the platform told their story. Some had been on the steps when a great explosion knocked them down the steps. Those on the platform had been knocked off their feet. Several had seen a flash a light ricochet off the walls. They had all heard the sound of an unimaginably loud explosion. A cloud of dust poured down the exit stairs of the station. It was too thick to breath. They cautiously felt their way back toward the platform. They were lead by voices of the people ahead of them in the darkening cloud of dust. Then it became impossible to breathe on the platform. Helping each other, they climbed down and retreated into the still air of the tunnel. They were walking toward a midway point in the tunnel where the air would be the least effected. If the trains started again, there would be plenty of room to move to the side. They remembered pictures of the enormous cloud of concrete dust when the towers fell. They figured that it would be about four hours until the dust had settled.  

   After a few hours, a small group began walking toward the exit. On the platform they passed through a fine mist. The floor was white with dust. Those that walked toward the exit groped their way along the handrails, guided by the sound of the footsteps of those climbing stairs ahead of them. 

    The stairs were covered by debris. The higher they went, the deeper was the debris. Toward the top, it was like trying to climb up a steep pile of irregular gravel. They would slide back and pull themselves up by the handrails. Surprisingly, there was little light toward the top. When they turned the last bend in the stairs they saw that the exit was filled with debris. Like someone had dropped large beams and hunks of broken concrete into the stairway. Like a building had been demolished nearby and the edge of the debris pile had spilled into the stairway  A little daylight was visible. They had to climb their way through a tangle of debris.

   When they climbed their way past the last obstacle, they were stunned. For as far as they could see, there was a moonscape of broken buildings. Endless piles of concrete and twisted beams. There were no streets. Everything was covered with the tumble of broken office buildings. Where their once stood their favorite Starbucks, there was now a mountain of debris.  They stood there stunned. It was in comprehensible. Some would stand in disbelieve. They passed the word back down the hole. It had been a nuclear bomb. 

    Some went into shock. Where is my office? Where is my job. Where are my fellow workers. Some would sit on a piece of what was once an office building. One would find a thick piece of tiled concrete that had once been the lobby of an office on the twentieth floor. Another on a square hunk of concrete that had been a support beam high in the sky. 

      After coming to grips with the new reality. One after another they started hiking west. They knew that the hudson was several blocks away. Coming over one ridge of debris, they could see that New Jersey was on fire. Approaching the Lincoln Tunnel, they joined others who were making their way out.  Someone asked, where are the others. 

    Inside the tunnel, they walked past lines of stalled cars. On the other side, they and all the others who walked with them emerged into the daylight. They were covered with white dust. Their hair was white. Their clothes were white. Their faces were powdered. They looked like ghosts. There were not many of them.

Long Island Isolated.

   Long Island was cut off. The roads were closed. The trains were not running. Power and water were off. A few left on boats or private planes. Over the next few days a flotilla of sailboats from all across the east coast was organized. Fuel was in short supply. Rescue boats were given top priority. They were delivering supplies and taking away passengers by lottery. The military dropped supplies. It was a couple weeks before the military could clear an exit road to the mainland. Then nearly everyone left.

  The emp brought down the power system and there was a cascade of power failures across the northeast, much like the great detroit failure in the 80’s.   

May 2017 

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chapter 10

Washington Flees

   In a bunker beneath the Appalachian mountains outside Winchester West Virginia, an operator was performing a series of activities to keep him brain active. His function was to wait and watch for an alarm that a nuclear device had gone off somewhere in the US. It happened every few days as part of a drill. The purpose was to keep him ready and to keep him composed in the event that the alarm went off. When an alert flashed, a klaxon sounded. He went through his drill and pressed a button which made a quick connect phone call. This time a real voice answered the phone. He read the script. A nuclear device has exploded in New York City. You are to take the president to a nearby underground bunker immediately. This is the real thing. Move Now. Go.   

    The security agent who answered the phone in Washington had answered one of three orange phones. From years of practice, he knew that the other orange phones would ring the next second. The voice on those phones would be computer generated and they would give the same message he just heard. According to plan, he pressed an alarm and jumped from his chair during the word immediately. The rest of the message he was never supposed to hear. They let him hear the whole message just once, during the first practice. They had timed him and everyone else who had ever sat in his chair. It was something of a tradition. He had exited his chair and was three feet away in 0.75 seconds, which put him in the top half. Once someone took two seconds. That person was not invited back.

    Into the earphone of every agent on duty, the computer said “Initiate Plan President to Bunker. The president is in the west conference room. This is not a drill.” Then the message repeated.  Halfway through the second message, two agents burst into the conference room. One said “Bunker Plan, Mr President.” They grabbed him by the arms and thighs and did what they called a carry run toward the door. They were not supposed to engage the president in conversation. They had practiced this many times. In the earlier days, they had sometimes injured the presidential stand-in. One had a dislocated shoulder. Another had a injured kneecap. They had developed something of an art in ejecting the president from a standing, sitting, or laying condition into high speed. 

Lifters

   The men who practiced this were called the lifters. The president had practiced too. Two administrations earlier, they had discovered that the president needed to learn how to allow himself to be lifted in order to avoid chiropractic adjustment. They called it the Clinton maneuver. Over time they had gotten very good at it. In the event that a warhead was inbound, every second counted.

   It took half a second for the explosion to register on the screen. Almost another half second to register on the brain of the watcher. At one second, the call was initiated. At 6.5 seconds, the orange phone man was out of his chair. At 7.25 seconds, the agents began hearing their message. At 12 seconds, they reached the president. At 16 seconds, they exited the room. It took ten seconds to get to the nearest down elevator. An agent had already removed the paneling, and was holding the door. This elevator only held room two people, one behind the other in a narrow space. It was the narrowest elevator in the world outside of a submarine. The president was pushed in face full against the wall to allow his attendant to make a full body press into the elevator to allow the outside agent to close the door. The elevator was so small that to do this he had to reach for the handle bars on the presidents side of the elevator, lower his hips below the presidents, and pull for ward. The president actually had to hold his breath. For this reason, it was an inside joke that they called themselves intimates of the president. 

   In the society of lifters, there were the bigs and the littles. The big group got their hips clipped upon door closing. The little group got a full closure without contact. There was a third group. The jumbos. who were sent to the gym until they could slim down to qualify for reentry into the big group. 

   When the lifter pushed the down button, the elevator shot down four stories in seconds. More that one lifter had gotten sick in the practice. For this reason, a separate wardrobe was kept in waiting. As soon as the down elevator hit the lowest floor, another agent yanked the door open and the race began again. The lifters rapidly scooted the president into a vehicle waiting a few away. This was a car different than anything on the highway. It looked like a big bullet with multiple axles. And they called it the bullet. An eight foot section of the side slide forward. The president was thrown sideways into a padded cocoon. A protective carriage rose to pull him into place. One of the lifters yelled ready and the eight foot wide panel slammed back in place. At the same time, the driver accelerated into full forward with the energy of two high powered engines. One forward, one aft. 

   There was no screeching of tires. The floor and the tires were built for maximum friction. All the energy went into rocketing the vehicle forward. Designed with an unlimited budget, there were two axles in the front and two in the back. There were two tires on each wheel. There were a total of sixteen modified wide pad wheels for maximum stability. A series of lasers guided the bullet. It was built to keep within one inch of center. 

    At 48 seconds, the car was speeding away at an alarming rate of acceleration.   Most of the residents of DC did not know that they city was honeycombed by underground tunnels. In four seconds, the bullet reached 100 mph. In ten seconds it reached maximum speed of 220 mph. They shot through what they called the long tunnel. Side lights mounted on the wall sped by at a dizzying rate of speed. It happened that most presidents had never traveled at more than 120 and that was in open ground. The tunnel was only wide enough for a car and a walkway. At close quarters, 220 seemed more 300 mph. It was off the charts. The president was advised to lay still in order not to distort the steering system. Lying still also kept the president from looking out and avoided the certainty of the president having motion sickness. The visual effect was too much information for a human being to digest. It was instant vertigo. Even the practicers had to build up to it. More than one presidential stand-in had gotten sick during the drill. 

    It was no wonder that presidents lost touch with the average person. They were privy to so many secrets of which the average citizen had no idea. At 4.5 minutes, they passed below the beltway into Virginia. No small amount of construction had been facilitated to mask the construction of such a special tunnel. No one noticed that the truckloads of excavation far exceeded the amount of earth moved by the digging of a basement and subbasement. 

    In five more minutes, they were beneath the Manassas National Battlefield.  Adjacent to it was the Northern Virginia Community College which had served as a fine disguise for the construction. At one point, they pulled off the tunnel into a garage. The tunnel went twenty miles further. There were some war games in which the area was faced with a cluster of incoming devices. In that scenario, the president was moved further outside the target area. 

   The president was met by military personnel and quickly escorted down a stairway into a hallway past a series of offices into a plush conference room. 

  At 9.6 minutes, the president was saluted and asked to sit down. He dropped into a large chair and was offered a glass of water.  The officer in charge began to tell the president what had happened in the last ten minutes. The officer had practiced this script many times before. He had twenty main scenarios and one hundred secondary scenarios. He just needed the information to fill in the blanks. A program had already read the location and the kiloton information, windspeed and affected areas. He explained that a nuclear device had leveled New York City. A large main wall screen lit up with live pictures of what remained of Manhattan. Several smaller screens showed different views. He was shown the mushroom cloud. At eleven minutes, the crest had risen to an altitude of 36,000 ft. At fifteen minutes, it would breach the stratosphere at 60,000 ft.  Then it would level off and begin to disperse.

     He reported that a majority of the working team believed the bombing was the work of a lone radical group which acquired a stolen russian weapon from Chechen rebels who had received some assistance from North Korea. But a minority took the position that it was a false flag operation conducted by Iran with significant help from Russia and that it had been in the making for several years. 

    The initial loss of life was estimated to be 500,000. Within a week it would rise to 1.5 million and within two years to 3 million. The information officer had the statistics for every major city dependent on the blast size. They just had to crunch the numbers.

    The world stock markets had dropped their limit and been closed. The american market had been blown away. The comex had been shut down. When the next wall street was resurrected from the ashes, it was expected that there would initially be a ninety percent drop. It was expected to recover slowly to fifty percent. . 

    Two million people were stranded on Long Island without power, fuel or water. 

    They planned and practiced this presentation many times. They had run drills with a presidential appointee. All aircraft in the vicinity of DC had been instructed to land immediately at Richmond or Baltimore or points more distant. All flights were grounded. A squadron of fighters combed the airspace. If anything moved, they were to shot it down. If there were a concern that more warheads were coming, the president would be transferred to headquarters deep beneath the West Virginian mountains. 

    The president needed to make a statement soon to restore confidence. 

They had prepared a couple short statements earlier in consultation with his appointee. “My Fellow Americans, today we have been assaulted by a lone terrorist group .... Justice will be done.”     

    They had prepared a little White House for him. His people would be arriving soon. Even his cook. The Officer took out a briefing folder and handed it to the president. It read “In the event of a Nuclear Explosion in NY.”

    Centuries earlier, after the great earthquake in Lisbon Portugal, the Marquis of Pombol had instructed his officers, “Bury the dead and feed the living.” The sheaf that was handed the president had the same core idea. After Katrina, the Office of Emergency Preparedness had realized that in the event of a nuke, the pentagon would need to swing into action on the ground. A permanent office had been established in the Pentagon. Already military personnel all over the world had been sent the plan and were told to expect that it would be approved in the next few minutes. The president was asked to approve the rescue plan. It would tap the full resources of the military. Hospital ships, Tankers, Air Transports, police support and thousands of soldiers on the ground. 

    On the economic side, the military had insisted that the appointee sign on to a plan in the event that a single city or a number of cities were attached by nuclear explosions. They had staff who would help him. Fifty years earlier, Eisenhower had anticipated that new administrations would not have the expertise or inclination to war game the economic aspects of a nuclear strike. They assembled a team that sharpened their skills with every administration. They had counterparts in every member of the G7. They were widely recognized as having the best team by far. 

    The president began reading. Expecting that the president would be overwhelmed, there were actions he needed to take immediately. Actions within the first hour, within the first six hours, within the first day, within the first week, and as soon as possible thereafter. He began calling his advisors. Some would never answer.

    In the meantime, at the opposite end of the spectrum of power, were the ordinary workers and inhabitants of the metropolitan area. 

    Annie Dillion was a billing clerk in the general accountants office of the pentagon. She had long supposed that such a day would come. She and a few of her office workers had joked that when the day came that Washington was attached, they wanted to be FOFO. It was a play on the accounting terms FIFO and LIFO. To her and her friends, it meant First out the door and First out of town. On that day she got a call from her husband who was on duty at a military base nearby. By prior arrangement, she would pick up the kids and head out of town. There were no small number of washingtonians who kept two gallons of gas and two months of supplies in their trunk. They called themselves full tankers. Once she had been stopped by the police on a routine check. The officer said “Lady, what are you expecting?” She answered “the worst.”

   She quickly said “I love you” and calmly cradled the phone. She walked past her closest friend and said “I am leaving. New York nuked.” Her friend had agreed if that day came, she would say nothing for fear of encountering a lock down. Annie skampered toward her car and raced out of the parking lot. She telephoned ahead to the school and asked her two kids to meet her at the door. She sped away and headed up the highway. 

   Once out of DC she sighed in relief. She was headed to a small collection of vacation A frames south of Berkeley Springs, West Virginia. They had food and water stocked there. There was plenty of woods around them for fuel. Two hours later, she pulled into the development. An old guy stepped out of the dilapidated gate house and greeted her by name. He had heard. He said he expected that they would have a full house by night fall if everybody made it. When she pulled in the driveway, she was reassured by the familiar sound of the gravel beneath her wheels. She opened the door and smelled the cottage smell that was associated with so many good weekend memories. She took a drink of water. An occasional drip had left a small blue stain on the white porcelain sink. The little town had been called Bath a couple centuries earlier when George Washington had stopped there to partake of the mineral properties of the water. People still came for the Baths. After a glass of water, she took the kids on a walk through the woods and around the lake to restore a sense of normality.

   She recalled that she and her husband had figured that it would take about five minutes for the news to get thru the media. That it might even get locked down. Then most would suffer a form of negative panic. They would stay in place. But some would run.

    During a sudden snow storm a couple years earlier, a lot of people had poured onto the streets at the same time. Traffic had suffered gridlock. Some intersections were blocked for two hours without moving an inch. Many people did not get home till five am. They figured that DC would suffer the same kind of gridlock in a voluntary evacuation. It was important to get out in the first ten minutes. After that, the highways would act like a funnel. Many would hit the roads, only a few would pass. Going northwest, the main exit highway was 270. Near Fredrick, it narrowed to two lanes which accommodated 100 cars per minute at maximum, if all went well. At that rate, it would take a couple months to evacuate their quadrant of the metro area. So success depended on being one of the first one per cent to leave town.

   That night Annie and the kids sat on the porch and watched the headlights as cars pulled off the main road. Finally one of them had just one headlight. Her heart leaped because her husband was driving a motor cycle. A moment later she recognized the sound of his engine. It sounded so good as it headed toward them in the woods. She ran to greet him and sobbed on his shoulder. He carried her to the front porch. He smiled at the kids and said “Will someone please give me a drink of that delicious water.” His daughter hurried back from the sink. Then they all sat down on the front porch and watched the western ridge where the last light of day slowly disappeared from the sky. They named the familiar stars as they appeared in the clear air. And they wondered what would happen next.

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chapter 11

Mushroom Cloud

   Word spread quickly. A couple planes who were nearby suffered a complete loss of electrical systems. But others who were behind them saw the mushroom cloud rise over the city. As the airports were not functioning they flew to points south like Philadelphia and Baltimore. The ham operators network was alive with reports about the explosion. 

   The pillar of purple fire lasted about thirty seconds. The rising ash grey cloud kept rising for fifteen minutes. It would continue rising to a height of 60,000. Commercial airliners traveling at 35,000 could look up at the top of the cloud which persisted for thirty minutes till it began to disperse. Many aircraft outside of thirty miles kept to their flight pattern. Pilots had the sad duty of informing their passengers of what had happened. Those near the windows stared out in disbelief. Some gave up their seats to others who had loved ones in the city. On every flight there were tears. And every passenger knew that they would never land in the same country. They might land in the same place but it would be a different country and a different life. 

     A few began to think through the consequences. Some realized that the stock market would drop by maybe half or more. Some of the wealthy realized they had become middle class. A few of the middle class wondered if they would have jobs when they landed.

   Residents of Greenwich Connecticut were close enough that they could see the tip of the rising cloud when it passed above 2200 ft in altitude. Cell phone systems were soon overwhelmed but word spread quickly. As word spread, people came down to the shore or drove to a high spot to get an unobstructed view of the horizon. The sight was shocking. Many began to weep. Some fell down or needed help to continue standing. Nearly everyone knew someone who worked in the city.  

   They could see the mushroom cloud in the distance and people could feel that a light breeze blowing from the south. The roads were soon clogged with people traveling as far as they could on what gas they had in their tank. Gas stations were ordered to limit purchases to five gallons. This would allow the drivers to travel sixty miles west and then pick up more fuel. Even then the gas stations were soon empty. This was a problem for many. Because of the high cost of gas, they tended to let their tanks run low. All along the way on the roads heading west out of town, there were abandoned cars on the side of the road with their occupants walking and hitchhiking. The cloud was coming. 

    The police figured they had ten hours to organize an evacuation. They broadcast a request on citizen band radio every ten minutes for drivers and businesses to take people west in their trucks and vans and leave town.  They named the main evacuation roads. They requested that volunteers ferry people to those roads. Off duty drivers went to their places of business and borrowed box trucks. Truck rental shops released all their box trucks and vans. People lined up all along the main westward roads in impromptu bus stops. All the available semis trailers were mobilized to fill up with people and drive past the fall line of the radioactivity, which was expected to be about sixty miles. 

    Some semis filled up with fifty people. When a truck would stop, people would pile in. There was an egalitarian spirit of cooperation. The police quickly set up road blocks and filled every truck and car with the maximum number of people possible. 

    One wealthy Wall Street executive looked back at his Manor House and quipped “there goes the lawn.” From one of his companies, he knew that if he ever came back, the lawn and all the shrubbery would have to be scrapped off and hauled away.  

   The police began broadcasting messages. “The radioactivity of fallout decreases rapidly. The danger drops 90% in seven hours and 99% in two days. If you can not leave, go to a basement. Radiation can penetrate walls. Set up a shelter with the maximum amount of material around you. Pick a corner of the basement. Create walls out of boxes and file cabinets. Create ceilings out of doors taken off their hinges. Pile as much mass as possible around you to create the equivalent of 16” of earth, 24” of water, or 38” of wood. Take water and food. You can come out briefly to stretch you legs and then get back inside as soon as possible. Wait as long as possible. You can come out in two to three days to join the evacuation. We will come back for you.”

    “Air does not become radioactive. Keep the dust out. If your basement is reasonably snug, there won't be any wind blowing through it to carry the radioactive fallout dust inside.

   “Food or water stored in sealed containers, that can later have any fallout dust brushed or rinsed off the outside of the container, will then be safe to use. As long as the fallout dust does not get inside the container, then whatever radiation penetrated the food/water container from the outside does not harm the contents. 

   In the communities in western New York, school gyms were prepared to accept evacuees.    

   Ultimately, a large part of Connecticut would be uninhabitable. The fallout zone would be two hundred miles long and sixty miles wide. A larger area would be unsafe for children or crops. Some areas would be radioactive for a thousand years. The worst areas of Chernobyl would be unsafe for 20,000 years

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chapter 12

Wall Street

Jesus this is for love of you, for the conversion of sinners, and in reparation for offenses committed against the Immaculate Heart of Mary

12 Stock market

 The world stock markets had dropped their limit and been closed. Everyone wanted out of stocks, bonds and dollars. It would take ninety days for the remnants of wall street to resurrect a successor in Philadelphia. 

   The employees of the NY Stock Exchange were gone. The people at Goldman Sachs, Merrill Lynch and all the others were gone. The familiar faces on CNBC were gone. Nearly the whole of the networks were gone. The big banks were gone. The real estate portfolios were gone.

Dollar drops.

   On the world exchanges, the dollar sunk like a rock. For years some investors had foreseen that the dollar would drop sooner or later. Every other reserve currency in the world, had come and gone. A few people had moved into physical gold and silver. A trickle were moving their money out of the dollar into other assets. Many more had their bags packed and were sitting close to the door. As soon as news reached London, traders dumped the dollar. The few who acted the fastest got out with most of their money.  

   Most of the movers and shakers of American finance died that day. And there assets died with them. A few survived because they were out of town. They watched with wild frustration as their net worth went up in smoke. The dollar dropped fifty percent. It soon became apparent that they US would not pay off it’s debts. Everyone moved to dump their treasuries. It was the greatest loss of money in the history of the world. 

Cascade of problems. 

   Gold went through the roof. In the last generation, the dollar had been the refuge of those who wanted to put their pesos or reals in a stable currency. Now the table reversed. Everyone knew that all the major economies were bankrupt. There was no where to run except to gold. The paper market was 100 times larger than the physical market. Fundholders were stunned that they could not just pick up the phone and go get their gold. It wasn’t there. It never had been. There had only been logarithms. 

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chapter 13

Coffee After the Cloud

   As Cap sipped the last of her second cup of coffee, she noticed a trickle of people entering the Cathedral. Forty minutes later, after she had dressed, she saw that the number was growing. She assumed that there was going to be a funeral for someone fairly well known.

   She looked at her phone. A text message said “Turn on TV.” She switched on and was aghast by the images.  She fell back in her chair. She thought about the many people she knew who lived in New York. How she but for a twist of fate could easily have been one of them. She was crushed by the sense of loss. But a part of her looked at the images and like many other people, held back in disbelief. It would be a month before she lost an eerie sense in the back of her mind that it had not really happened.

   After half an hour, she gathered herself and stood up. Sickened, she steadied herself and walked to the phone. The lines were of course overwhelmed. She walked to Skinners office in Dogtown to ask for his next appointment. She passed people who were crying.

   There was an opening the next afternoon. When she saw Skinner, she came right to the point. “Is there a connection between Fatima and New York?” He said “Yes, but only in a general manner of speaking.”

     He pulled a book from his library and opened to a book mark. “I thought you might ask me that question. The answer lies in a story that began four centuries ago in a town in the middle of eastern France. In a little village set among the fields and rolling vineyards of Burgundy. A young woman named Marguerite Marie Alacoque had entered the Visitation Convent in a hamlet called Paray-le-Monial. She had had mystical experiences since childhood. After her novitiate, Jesus spoke to her about what came to be known as the Devotion to His Sacred Heart. In 1689, He told her that he wanted the image of His Sacred Heart inscribed on the flag of France. If the King would do so, Jesus promised him success in his endeavors and victory over his enemies. The king did not do so. His reign and the reign of his successors saw one military failure after another. The country fell deeper into debt. The people suffered onerous taxes. One hundred years later, almost to the day, the French Revolution began. 

    He read from a notebook. “On June 17 1689, The Feast of the Sacred Heart, Saint Margaret Mary spoke to Mother de Saumaise to have the message passed on to King Louis XIV. ”He thus desires, it seems to me, to enter with pomp and magnificence into the houses of princes and kings, to be honored there as much as he was outraged, despised, and humiliated in His Passion. And He desire to receive as much pleasure at seeing the great ones of the earth bowing down and humiliated before Him as He felt bitterness at seeing Himself annihilated at their feet.

    “Make it known to the eldest son My Sacred Heart - speaking of our King - that just as his temporal birth was obtained by devotion to the merits of My Holy Infancy, in the same way he will obtain his birth into grace and eternal glory by the consecration which he will himself make to My Adorable Heart, which wishes to triumph over his own, and through his efforts, triumph over the great ones of the earth as well. It wishes to reign in his palace, to be painted on his standards and engraved on his arms to make them victorious over his enemies, bringing these haughty one and proud people to their knees before him to make him triumphant over all the enemies of Holy Church. 

   Skinner looked up from the notebook and said “One Hundred Years Later, on 17 June 1789 representatives of the Third Estate declared themselves the National Assembly. It was the beginning of the French Revolution. Three days later came the Tennis Court Oath. The deputies vowed ‘not to separate, and to reassemble wherever circumstances require, until the constitution of the kingdom is established’.”

    “The deputies pledged to continue to meet until a constitution had been written, despite the royal prohibition. The oath was both a revolutionary act, and an assertion that political authority derived from the people and their representatives rather than from the monarch himself. Their solidarity forced Louis XVI to order the clergy and the nobility to join with the Third Estate in the National Assembly.

   “The Oath communicated in unambiguous fashion the idea that the deputies of the National Assembly were declaring themselves the supreme state power. From this point forward, it was a downward path for the monarchical traditions of divine right. It was the beginning of the end of the French Monarchy.

New York Connection.

   Skinner leaned back and looked far off. “So, you ask, what does that have to do with New York. You noticed that the King of France was given 100 years to fulfill the promise. Then trouble happened. In the case of Fatima, the Madonna requested the Consecration of Russia. Sister Lucy said that Jesus twice spoke to her about His unhappiness that the Consecration had not been performed. 

Like the King of France

   “In August of 1931, Our Lord said to Sister Lucy, “Make it known to My ministers that given that they follow the example of the King of France in delaying the execution of My request, that they will follow him into misfortune. It will never be too late to have recourse to Jesus and Mary.”

   A year later, Our Lord complained to Sister Lucy. “They did not want to heed my request. ... Like the King of France they will repent and do it, but it will be late.  Russia will have already spread its errors throughout the world provoking wars and persecutions against the Church; the Holy Father will have much to suffer.”

    Skinner continued, “The Sovereign in this case will be the Pope. His Ministers will be the hierarchy and the loyalists will be the laity. The words “Like the King of France” suggest that He is going to do it the same way. Normally, God takes His own good time. But in this case, He seems to have a time table. One hundred years from the request for the Consecration of Russia, maybe to the day, on June 13, 2029, the Pope will suffer some kind of reverse. Maybe he will be hauled up on charges before the European Court of Human Rights. The process has already started.

2017

   “But about New York. At Fatima, Our Lady appeared six times and each time She asked for the daily rosary. She promised the the rosary would be especially efficacious in this period of time. Here is what Sister Lucy said in the 1957 interview: ‘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, ... that cannot be resolved 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." 

   “Unfortunately, since Vatican II saying of the rosary has fallen off a cliff. My guess is that these last 100 years since Fatima have been a century of grace. It ended this month, October 2017. From here on out it could be a bumpy ride. New York is an example. My guess is that we area entering the minor tribulations. 

    “I would like to make a proposal to you. For some reason, the path of your life has intersected with that of the Third Secret. Maybe you should consider reconstructing the Third Secret.” Cap looked up in surprise. “Is such a thing possible?” “Yes. I think so. Throughout the years since 1960, the popes and their nearest collaborators have read the secret. Here and there a part of the mosaic has been revealed. You would just need to put the pieces of the mosaic together so that they gave a good picture.

    “The next time we meet I will share with you what is known about the Third Secret. It will be interesting. The Third Secret as you might have guessed is a shocker.”

   They talked for a while about people they knew in New York. Cap needed to speak with someone. She wanted to mourn and there was something about this man that no one else had. Part of his professional calling was dealing with the departed. He even suggested she pray for the departed souls. He told her that there Padre Pio said that souls in purgatory were aware of who was praying for them. 

   He gave her some reading material on Fatima and they said good bye. As she walked away, she considered that Skinner had just given her an assignment. 

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chapter 15

Aiello

   That evening, Skinner sat reading in the main room of his one bedroom apartment on the seventh floor of Jesuit Hall. It was more like a two room library with a few pieces of furniture. There were books everywhere. Bookcases hugged almost all the available wall space. One wall of the main room had a set of bookcases in which the books were stacked two rows deep. In other places books were stacked on the floor. In this landscape dominated by books, sat a conversation area, sofa and a couple old stuffed chairs. In the other room were four more walls of books in the center of which was a bed.

   He thought back over the arc of his life. He was born in the same decade as the Revelations of Ponteverda and Tuy. He was a toddler during the disappointment by Pius XI when he should have and did not Consecrate Russia and did not promote the First Saturdays. During his boyhood, the “worse war”  began. In the years of his youth, Russia spread her errors throughout the world, fomenting wars, persecutions of the church, and the good being martyred. He had not yet seen the Triumph of the Immaculate Heart which the Madonna had promised. Nowhere on the horizon could he see the Consecration and conversion of Russia.

   Each morning when he dressed, he kissed his brown scapular and made his morning offering. He recited “O Mary, who did promise that Russia would be converted, I offer thee this day...” For many years, he said it out of blind faith, never expecting that he would see it’a fulfillment. But in the last few years, he had begun to believe the ground was shifting and the time was approaching.

     He remembered something from the sixties. He rose and hunted briefly through his books and selected two from among the many. The dining room table made an excellent desk because it had so much room. Different projects owned different parts of his tabletop.

   After finding what he had been looking for, he sat down to type. After finishing, he folded the papers and sealed the envelope. He would drop the envelope the next morning in the outgoing mail. He preferred letters to email whenever he had been wandering among the shadows of truth.

   He wrote

Cap,

     I remembered that someone said that when the Pope John did not publish the secret in 1960, the Madonna took her message elsewhere. One of the holy women to whom She spoke was Sister Elena Aiello. Aiello made some dire announcements but in the course of time, she has been declared Blessed Aiello.

   Sister Elena began suffering the stigmata on her hands, feet, head and side every Good Friday from the age of 28 until her death in 1961. She founded a religious order called The Sister Minims. She was respected by Pope Pius XII with whom she corresponded regularly.

   She had apparitions of the Blessed Virgin from 1947 until her death. The Madonna described tragedies which would occur in the future if people did not amend their sinful lives. 

Revolution in Rome
   “Oh, what a horrible vision I see! A great revolution is going on in Rome!...You cannot possibly imagine what is going to happen. A great revolution shall break out and the streets shall be stained with blood.

Slender thread shall snap
   “The world is thoroughly upset because it is in a worse condition than at the time of the deluge. Materialism marches on ever fomenting bloody strifes and fratricidal struggles. Clear signs portend that peace is in danger. That scourge, like the shadow of a dark cloud, is now moving across mankind. Only my power, as Mother of God, is preventing the outbreak of the storm. All is hanging on a slender thread. When that thread shall snap, Divine Justice shall pounce upon the world and execute its dreadful, purging designs. All the nations shall be punished because sins, like a muddy river, are now covering all the earth.”

Chastisement by fire
   “Once there was the chastisement by water, but if there is not a returning to God, there will come the chastisement by fire, which will cover the streets of the world with blood.”

Russia will burn.
    “To Sister Aiello, Our Lady said ‘See how Russia will burn!’ Before my eyes there extended an immense field covered with flames and smoke, in which souls were submerged as if in a sea of fire!”

Fire from the Angels.
    “And all this fire,” concluded the Madonna, “is not that which will fall from the hands of men, but will be hurled directly from the Angels (at the time of the great chastisement or “housecleaning” that will come upon the earth). Therefore I ask prayers, penance and sacrifice, so I may act as Mediatrix for my Son in order to save souls.” 

Russia will battle America

   “If people do not recognize in these scourges (of nature) the warnings of Divine Mercy, and do not return to God with truly Christian living, another 

 war will come from the east to the west. Russia with her secret armies will battle America; will overrun Europe. 

Rhine overflowing with bodies

    “The river Rhine will be overflowing with corpses and blood. Italy, also, will be harassed by a great revolution, and the Pope will suffer terribly.”

Cities submerged
  “Great calamities will come upon the world, which will bring confusion, tears, struggles and pain. Great earthquakes will swallow up entire cities and countries, and will bring epidemics, famine, and terrible destruction especially where the sons of darkness are.”

Fire will fall like snowstorms

    “The world will be once more afflicted with great calamity; with bloody revolutions; with great earthquakes; with famines; with epidemics; with fearful hurricanes; and with floods from rivers and seas. But if men do not return to God, purifying fire will fall from the Heavens, like snowstorms, on all peoples, and a great part of humanity will be destroyed!’

   “No longer do men speak according to the true spirit of the Gospel. The immorality of the times has ‘reached a peak! But men do not listen to my motherly warnings, so the world must soon be purified.

Red flag over St Peters

   “Russia will March upon all the nation of Europe, particularly Italy, and will raise her flag over the dome of St Peter’s. 

Sins of Impurity.

   “Italy will be severely tried by a great revolution, and Rome will be purified in blood for its many sins, especially those of impurity! The flock is about to be dispersed and the Pope must suffer greatly!... sins, like a muddy river, are now covering all the earth.”

Hurricanes, earthquakes, famines

   "Tremendous scourges are impending over the world, and various nations are struck by epidemics, famines, great earthquakes, terrific hurricanes, with overflowing rivers and seas, which bring ruin and death.

I will protect My faithful ones

   "Spread the devotion to my Immaculate Heart, in order that many souls may be conquered by my love, and that many sinners may return to my Maternal Heart. Do not fear, for I will accompany with my maternal protection my faithful ones, and all those who accept my urgent warnings, and they - especially by the recitation of my Rosary - will be saved.

Soon Satan will show his might

   "Satan goes furiously through this disordered world, and soon will show all his might. But, because of my Immaculate Heart, the triumph of Light will not delay in its triumph over the power of darkness, and the world, finally, will have tranquility and peace." 

Nations convulsed

   "People pay no attention to my motherly warnings, and thus the world is falling headlong into an abyss of iniquity. Nations shall be convulsed by terrible disasters, causing destruction and death.

"Russia, spurred on by Satan, will seek to dominate the whole world and, by bloody revolutions, will propagate her false teachings throughout all the nations, especially in Italy. The Church will be persecuted and the Pope and the priests shall suffer much."

Rome will not be Saved.

   "My daughter, Rome will not be saved, because the Italian rulers have forsaken the Divine Light and because only a few people really love the Church. But the day is not far off when all the wicked shall perish, under the tremendous blows of Divine Justice."

Men do not change.

   They live in their obstinacy of sin. More severe are the scourges and plagues to recall them to the way of God; but men still become furious, like wounded beasts (and harden their hearts against the Grace of God). The world is no longer worthy of pardon, but only of fire, destruction and death’.  

Hell, so many fall like snowflakes

   “The Madonna then came closer, and with a sad expression, showed me the flames of Hell. She said:” ‘Satan reigns and triumphs on earth! See how the souls are falling into Hell. See how high the flames are, and the souls who fall into them like flakes of snow look like transparent embers! How many sparks! How many cries of hate, and of despair! How much pain!’  ‘See how many priestly souls! Look at the sign of their consecration in their transparent hands! (In the palms of their hands the sign of the cross, in more vivid fire, could clearly be seen!) What torture, my daughter, in my maternal Heart! Great is my sorrow to see that men do not change! The justice of the Father requires reparation — otherwise many will be lost!’  

Also, there was Mother Elena Leonardi 

   Mother Elena Leonardi had been under special guidance of the famous Stigmatist Padre Pio of Pietrelcina, Italy since she was nine. She was a victim soul, chosen by God to atone for Priests and sinners. 

Sea of Fire will descend

   "An unforeseen fire will descend over the whole earth, and a great part of humanity will be destroyed. This will be a time of despair for the impious: with shouts and satanic blasphemy, they will beg to be covered by the mountains, and they will try to seek refuge in caverns, but to no avail. Those who remain will find God's mercy in my power and protection, while all who refuse to repent of their sins will perish in a sea of fire!"

Russia completely burned

   "Blessed are those who at this time may be called truly devoted to Mary! My name is locked in your heart, my daughter. . . Russia will be almost completely burned."

For your perusal. Sincerely,

Skinner

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chpater 16

First Four Lines

   They met again in July. Skinner poured two cups of tea. Sipping his tea, Skinner sat back in his big chair and asked what Cap thought about What is Known about the Third Secret. Cap answered that she thought it was staggering. It is an alternate view of history. It would make a challenging class. Students would be struck by it.

    You don’t have to be Catholic to be interested in Lucy. Throughout history there arisen people who have a gift of prophecy. Tecumseh foretold the earthquake of New Madrid in 1812. You don’t have to be Shawnee to accept that he was given a glimpse of the future. Some people have a gift.

   I got your letter on Aeillo and I looked up her information. She was a very kind person. She had the stigmata, various sufferings. And she developed an orphanage for abandoned girls. She was gentle with the children. It is remarkable that someone so tender would write images so upsetting.

   Skinner said that Aiello didn’t have much choice. Experience was rough on those who did not announce what they were supposed to announce.

   “About what is known about the secret. Now that you have many pieces of the mosaic, the question arises of how you fit them together. Let me give you my opinion of the structure of the third secret. I have thought about this on and off for many years. A number of others have talked about what is in the secret but as far as I know, no one has ever dealt with the structure of the secret except to say that it has between twenty and twenty five lines.

First line

  He sat down his tea and picked up his notes. “I think the first line of the third secret is “You saw the ruin of the world.” When She showed the children a vision of hell, She said “You saw hell where the souls of poor sinners go.” I assume that the Madonna uses the same expression, “you saw ...”, after showing the children the vision of the Bishop in White.  She uses the same words because there is a certain harmony in the way she speaks to the children. There are parallels in the secrets.

    The Secret weighed heavily on Pope John. In his Opening Speech to Vatican II, he wished to separate himself from those who foresaw trouble ahead. Several had read the secret with him. He assumed that a couple dozen more had been told the contents verbatim and that many more had the general idea. He felt is necessary to counter the pessimism of the third secret. Therefore in denying that pessimism he chose to use the word most associated with the first line of the secret. He attacked those who saw “ruin and calamity”. “He mocked, disdainfully, those whom he called ‘prophets of doom.’

 And there was no doubt among any of us that he was speaking of the three prophets of Fatima, toward whom he was hostile.”

Half in Ruins

   Lucy described the Vision of the Bishop in White in a city half in ruins. Frere Michel says “The Church was falling into ruin but only by half, because there still existed Catholics whose innocent souls had not let themselves be perverted by heresy.

Lamentable Ruins.

    “It is notable that at the end of the Sixties Sister Lucy was alarmed at the campaigns that the progressivists were waging, even in Portugal, against the devotion of the Holy Rosary. She wrote at the time to Father Umberto Pasquale: “We see, alas, the lamentable ruins that the demon has caused.’ “

Second line

   The second line in the second secret is “In order to save them, God wishes to establish in the world devotion to My Immaculate Heart.” The second line in the third secret if it follows the same patterns, says “In order to save them, God wished to establish the Communion of Reparation on the First Saturdays.”

   Speaking about devotion to the Immaculate Heart, Frere Michel says that ”since God has decided to manifest more and more His great design of love, which is to grant all graces to men through the mediation of the Immaculate Virgin, it seems that their refusal to submit with docility to what God wills is a fault which most gravely wounds His Heart. And for which He no longer finds in Himself any inclination to pardon them.”

 These are hard words.

    Later, in connection with the Request for the Consecration of Russia, Our Lady would say “So numerous are the souls which the justice of God condemns for sins committed against Me, that I come to ask for reparation. Sacrifice yourself for this intention and pray.” More hard words. This is such a stunning statement. Most of the world believe that there are no sins against Our Lady, and certainly none which would merit eternal condemnation.

   It is as though there are three catholic churches. The old church in which Our Lady was venerated. The New Church in which Our Lady is minimized. And The Church of the Third Secret in which Our Lady explodes on the scene as God’s front agent. 

     By the way, you don’t have to be Catholic to believe Lucy. Throughout history there arise people who have a gift of prophecy. Tecumseh foretold the earthquake of New Madrid in 1812. You don’t have to be Shawnee to accept that he was given a glimpse of the future. Some people have a gift.

The third line.

   The third line of the second secret is “If people will do what I ask, many souls will be saved and there will be peace.” The third line of the third secret follows the same harmony. “If the Holy Father had done so, many souls would have been saved.”

The fourth line of the third secret is the shocker. “Because he did not, the devil will infiltrate the Church.”

   He looked at Cap to gage her reaction. But she was looking out the window with a far off expression. She was listening intently without making a judgement.

   My opinion is that the reason that the third secret has not been revealed is that it predicts that Lucifer will infiltrate the Church. 

   It is a sad story. Because the world did not respond to Mary requests, evil entered the church. Sister Lucy said it was sad. If the Holy Father had promoted the Communion of Reparation on First Saturdays, then Russia would have been consecrated, the world would have been converted and there would have been peace and an end to war.

   At Akita, Our Lady spoke the same words. “The devil will infiltrate the Church.” Cardinal Ratzinger said that the message of Akita is essentially the same as the content of the Third Secret.

 This is the great danger from which Our Lady wished to save the Church and the world.

   Sister Lucy also spoke about the devil infiltrating the Church. “It is painful to see such a great disorientation in so many persons who occupy places of responsibility.... It is because the devil has infiltrated evil under cover of good, and the blind are beginning to guide others, as the Lord tell us in His Gospel, and souls are letting themselves be deceived.”

   Cap asked, You think that a nun would say that about the Church? She is not the only one. A number of others have spoken about the devil infiltrating the church. One of them was a devout mystic who lived in Brittany and died in 1941. Here name was Marie Julie Jahenny. She was perhaps the greatest stigmatist in the history of the Church. She was a virgin clairvoyant and a holy person.

   Marie-Julie predicted numerous chastisements for sin that would fall on France and then the rest of the world. Earthquakes, destructive storms, famines, plagues, civil war, the closure of all churches, the slaughter of Christians, the destruction of Paris, and the Three Days of Darkness. Signs in the sky would announce the coming of the Great Monarch and the Angelic Pontiff.

I will Decimate the People. 

   She had a vision of a dialogue between Our Lord and Lucifer. The latter said "I will attack the Church. I will overthrow the Cross, I will decimate the people, I will deposit a great weakness of Faith in hearts. There will also be a great denial of religion.”

I will be Master of all things. 

   “For a time I will be MASTER of all things, everything will be under my Xcontrol, even Your temple and all Your people."

Lament

   Skinner paused for a while. “I think that the third secret is in part a lament about humanity not having responded to Her requests and a description of what will have happened as a result. It is a song of regret and a warning that trouble is coming. Sister Lucy said she never saw Our Lady smile. In the 1957 interview, Sister Lucy says that the message that is supposed to be opened in 1960 “will be very sad for everyone, not one person will rejoice.” 

   The Madonna made her requests in 1917. She waited patiently until 1960. She said in effect, that if you will do what I ask, then there will be peace. If not, then war. Unfortunately, humanity did not do what she asked and we moved into the If not arena.

The letter of 1982

   On May 12, 1982, Sister Lucia wrote a letter to the Holy Father. It  was later released when they revealed the Vision of the Bishop in White.

 It consisted of four paragraphs. Lucy began,

   “The Third part of the secret refers to Our Lady words ‘If not, Russia will spread her errors throughout the world, causing wars and persecutions of the Church. The good will be martyred; the Holy Father will have much to suffer; various nations will be annihilated.’

   She continued. “The Third part of the secret is a symbolic revelation, referring to this part of the Message. Conditioned by whether we accept or not what the Message itself asks of us: ‘If My requests are heeded, Russia will be converted, and there will be peace; if not, she will spread her errors throughout the world, etc.’

   “Since we did not heed this appeal of the message, we see that it has been fulfilled, Russia has invaded the world with her errors. And if we have not yet seen the fulfillment of the final part of this prophecy, we are going toward it little by little with great strides. If we do not reject the path of sin, hatred, revenge, injustice, violation of the rights of the human person, immorality, violence, etc.

   “And let us not say that it is God who is punishing us in this way. On the contrary, it is people themselves who are preparing their own punishment. In His kindness, God warns us and calls us to the right path, while respecting the freedom He has given us, hence people are responsible.” end of quote.

    Skinner took another sip of tea and began to explain his interpretation of the letter. I have included this letter because it supports the texture of what I am suggesting above.What is remarkable about this letter is that Lucy is writing directly about the third secret. It was written in the day before John Paul II’s Mass at Fatima in which he publicly thanked The Madonna for sparing his life in the assassination attempt one year earlier. One may assume that the Pope met with Lucy and encouraged her to write this letter.  The politics of the situation was that Pope John Paul wanted to release the secret. The anti fatima party did not.

Colossal Punishment

    First of all, Lucy makes is clear that the third secret is about a Colossal Punishment which God will visit upon humanity. But not to blame God because we have brought it on ourselves.

   Second, Lucy says that the punishment concerns Russia having invaded the world with her errors and the final fulfillment of Russia’s errors in the world. It sounds like Lucy is saying that the harm that Russia has done so far is only part of the secret. There is more harm to come from Russia.

“In the first two paragraphs, Lucy is saying that the third part of the secret focuses on what will happen if we have not responded to Her requests. The third secret concerns the “If not, Russia will spread her errors throughout the world, causing wars ... nations will be annihilated.”

Background, the Second Secret.

   Here it is helpful to remember that the second and third secrets were part of a single conversation which occurred at the third apparition. They were close together. There was the vision of hell. Then about twenty lines of conversation from Our Lady. Then the Vision of the Bishop in White 

 and another twenty lines of conversation. The whole apparition lasted only about twelve minutes. 

    In the second part, Our Lady proposed an If and If not offer to humanity. She did so twice. First, She says if people will do what I ask, then many souls will be saved. If not, then a worse war would follow. Next, She asked for the First Saturday devotion and the Consecration of Russia. And then She stated the second if and if not condition. She said “If my requests are heeded, Russia will be converted and there will be peace. If not, she will spread her errors throughout the world, causing wars and persecutions of the church. The good will be martyred, the Holy Father will have much to suffer, various nations will be annihilated.”

    It is remarkable that Our Lady made an offer to humanity and almost no one knows about it. It was backed up by the most witnessed miracle in human history. It has been buried.

We did not respond.

   In the third paragraph Lucy is saying that “Since we did not heed this appeal of the message,” we must now face the consequences. Russia has invaded the world with her errors. The natural effect of those errors is a train of consequences which we are experiencing now. Little by little, we move closer to the final fulfillment of the third secret. We are making great strides in moral disintegration. We are traveling along the path of sin. The final fulfillment will be a universal convulsion in which are dominant the conditions of “hatred, revenge, injustice, violation of the rights of the human person, immorality, violence, etc.”

Etc

   The etc is significant. Sister Lucy doesn’t finish her sentence. And the manner in which she cuts off the sentence is the same as she used when she said “In Portugal the dogma of the faith will always be preserved etc.” The “etc” was then a means of making public that there was more to the story. Alonso

  and others have said the the rest of the sentence is implicit. If the dogma of the faith has been preserved in Portugal, then this clearly implies that it will be lost elsewhere. 

  So what does the et cetera mean here. It implies that “If we do not reject the path of sin,” then we shall experience a worldwide convulsion of hatred, worldwide war, the triumph of atheism, and finally widespread annihilation of nations and the consequent loss of an enormous part of human life.

Cadavers

    In the Vision, the bishop in white passes a large number of bodies on his way up the hill. Lucy used the word cadavers. The word cadavers is used in the old testament just twice, to describe apostates. So, it could be said that the Vision begins with a world half in ruins. Of wide spread apostasy and war. First comes the apostasy, a worldwide loss of faith. Then comes war. then the killing of the pope, the clergy and the laity. 

Tense

    One of the overlooked aspects of the Third Secret is the tense in which it is written. Does The Madonna speak in the past, the present or the future. 

   In the second part of the secret, the Madonna was looking forward in time to future events. She uses the future tense. She uses the word “will.” As in there “will be an even worse war... He will punish...Russia will spread her errors... the good will be martyred... nations will be annihilated.” 

    In the third part of the secret, the perspective changes. The Madonna showed the children a vision of a city half destroyed in war, corpses on the ground, and a murdered bishop in white. It is the view of a past event. The Madonna took the children forward in time in order to look back at what will have happened as a result of not following Her requests. The Madonna is no longer speaking about a thing which may or may not happen. The choice has been made. Fate has been sealed. The die has been cast. No longer is it appropriate to speak in terms of “If My requests are heeded.” The time of choice has past. It is as if She showed them a movie of a past event and spoke about it. The appropriate verb tense is past perfect. Of a thing completed in the past.

   So the third secret is expressed in the past tense. Also, Lucy is giving us a big clue when she says “The secret ... Conditioned by whether we accept or not what the Message itself asks of us.” She is says that is involves a conditional expression.  A conditional expression in the past tense would look like line three above.

   Glancing at the clock on his window sill, Skinner said “That’s enough for today. If you want to tackle writing the Third Secret, start reading Frere Michel. The three volumes have only about three thousand pages. The Fourth Secret by Socci is good too. He is an italian journalist who came around 180 on the existence of the secret. It is a good read. Especially if you get bogged down in the big book. However, you might not. The big book is like reading a mystery novel. You want to see what happens next. Except that sometimes you need to set it down and give your mind time to absorb what you have read. 

   “I will see you after summer vacation.” With that they parted and Cap bicycled back through Forest Park and the Central West end to her apartment. As she coasted past the Giraffe field, she had the same sense again that the world looked different.

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chapter 17

The Fuentes Interview

   Skinner continued to think about the job that Cap had tackled. In late July, he wrote to her.

Cap,  

   If there is one fatima document which stands above the others, it is the Fuentes Interview.  This is one that caused so much trouble for Sister Lucy. It is one of the most valuable and informative of the fatima documents.

   Here below is most of what is know about the interview. Fr Augustine Fuentes was the postulator for the cause of the beatification of Francisco and Jacinta. In that capacity, he interviewed Sister Lucy in 1957. Upon his return to Mexico, he gave a conference to group of nuns. His remarks were later published. They stirred up a hornets nest. There were elements about which Sister Lucy spoke strongly which were in neither the first or the second second secret. It could be deduced that she was speaking about the third secret. 

Sad, Pale, Emaciated

   “I wish to tell you about the last conversation I had with Sister Lucy on December 26 of 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.”

A Terrible Chastisement

   “Father, 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 am 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.

Russia to be the Scourge of God

   “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 beforehand we do not obtain the conversion of that poor nation.

Decisive Battle between Mary and Satan

   “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.

Drag to Hell

  “Religious and priests who fall away from their beautiful vocation drag numerous souls to hell.

Always Sad

   “In all the apparitions, we always saw Her sad. We never say Her smile. This sadness is caused by the offences against God and the punishment that menaces sinners.

Material Punishments Imminent

   “Father, this is why 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. My mission is to indicate to everyone the imminent danger we are in of losing our souls for all eternity.

We are on our own

   “Father, we should not wait ... for a call to come from Rome to do penance. Nor should we wait for the call to penance to come from our bishops in our diocese nor from the religious. 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 all the souls that God has placed on our path. 

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 Final Battle. 

   “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.

The Last Remedies. 

  “The second reason is that She 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. 

Sin Against the Holy Spirit. 

   “The third reason 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 see that the world pays no attention whatsoever, then, we say in our imperfect manner of speaking, He offers us with a certain trepidation 

The Last Means of Salvation, His 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 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.

   “Sister Lucy told me: the two means to save the world are prayer and sacrifice.

Special Efficacy of 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, ... that cannot be resolved 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." End of the interview.

 Best wishes,

Skinner

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chapter 18

Short Version of the Third Secret

   In early august, Skinner sent Cap a letter in which he hoped she was enjoying her summer vacation. He wanted to share with her his thoughts on a few lines of the Fuentes Interview. He liked to call it the short version of the third secret. 

Cap,

   In the Fuentes interview, there are a few lines in which Sister Lucy gives away the basic content of the third secret. 

   She says “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.”

   If this is rearranged according to the structure of the second secret, it looks like this.

   If we remain obstinate in sin, we are in imminent danger of losing our souls for all eternity. 

   If the world does not pray and do penance, it is certain that the world will suffer material punishments.

    The third secret consists of Spiritual and Material punishments. The danger of losing our souls is imminent, that is to say nearby, close. The spiritual chastisement comes first. The material punishments come later. The spiritual chastisement will be in progress in 1960. At that time, it will be “more clear”.

   The heart of the third secret is that there will be a spiritual chastisement which involves the eternal loss of many souls. It brings to mind what Malachi Martin said on the Art Bell radio show. He said that in the third secret was something worse, far worse than the annihilation of nations. It “would terrify people, would fill confessionals on Saturday night, would fill the cathedrals, the basilicas, and the churches with believers on their knees, beating the breasts.”

   What is terrifying is that the world has rejected God’s wishes, and that God has abandoned the world to the devil. He has written off modern culture. Enormous numbers of souls will be condemned for all eternity for having neglected Mary. Mary said to Lucy, “So numerous are the souls which the justice of God condemns for sins committed against Me.”

 The world has rejected the request for the daily rosary, for prayer and penance, for the First Saturdays, for the Consecration of Russia, and for “His design of love, which is to grant all graces to men through the mediation of Immaculate Virgin... The refusal... is a fault which gravely wounds His Heart. ... no inclination to pardon them.”

No Crime More Unpardonable

  The offenses stack up. Lucy said “For Our Savior, there is no crime more unpardonable than to despise His Most Holy Mother. It is a blasphemy against the Holy Spirit, which will not be forgiven in this life or the next.

   The reasons the Churches and confessionals would be filled on Saturday night is that anyone who had not been saying the daily rosary and doing the First Saturdays, will rightly be terrified of being damned. Even those who have said the daily rosary will be shaking in their boots. 

   What are non catholics to do? Pray and do penance. Sister Lucy told Father Fuentes “The two means to save the world are prayer and sacrifice.”

 Padre Pio said that Jesus came to make an alliance with men of good will. It was not exclusively catholic.

      In 1984, the Bishop of Fatima, speaking with an insiders knowledge of the Secret, said that “the loss of faith of a continent is worse than the annihilation of a nation: and it is true that faith is continually diminishing in Europe.”

 This agrees with the logical sequence. First the faith will be lost. Then the world will be punished. He was saying in a guarded way that Europe was losing the faith and that war and natural catastrophe would inevitably follow.

Another Summary of the Third Secret.

   When, in 1943, Sister Lucy was asked by her bishop, to write the Third Secret, she encountered great difficulty. Months passed during which she tried several times to write the secret. Our Lady appeared to Sister Lucy to tell her to write the Secret. Sister Lucy was then able to act in peace and in assurance that she was acting in accord with God’s will. She was able to write the Secret.

   If it had been just a matter of wars or natural disasters, Sister Lucy would not have anguished over writing the secret. It was something far worse. Something which made her shudder. 

   At one point during her struggle, she said it was not absolutely necessary to do so, “since in a certain manner, she has already said it.”

 What had Our Lady said? She has said “In Portugal the dogmas of the Faith will always be preserved.” And by implication, that they would be lost elsewhere. 

War was a punishment for sin.

   The Madonna had said that “If people will attend to my requests, Russia will be converted and there will be peace. If not, Russia will spread it errors throughout the world, fomenting wars and persecution of the Church. The good will be martyred, the Holy Father will have much to suffer and that several nations will be annihilated.”  And that war, hunger, and persecution of the Church and the Holy Father would follow if the First Saturdays of Reparation and the Consecration of Russia to Her Immaculate Heart were not performed.

   In my opinion, the short version of the Third Secret is a good summary of the contents. 

Best wishes,

Skinner

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chapter 19

The Great Hurricane

   Over the fall and winter, Skinner and Cap met a few times to discuss what she had read. As winter turned to spring, Cap began a rough draft of the third secret, writing and rewriting it. testing it against the criteria of what was already know about the secret. 

   As weeks passed and Cap worked on her secret, warm weather swept across the south. Temperatures in the Gulf grew steadily. At the end of august when they normally taper off, they continued to rise. Some buoys in the gulf were transmitting temperatures which they had never been seen before.    

   Tropical Storm Lilly grew into category 1 status as it approached Cuba. Instead of weakening over land, it continued to grow in strength as it headed north toward Florida. It traveled slowly up the western shore of Florida, gaining strength and flattening buildings in Naples, Fort Myers, Sarasota, Bradenton and Tampa. Near Tampa it sat in place, pounding the Tampa area for a day. Then it retraced it’s path back to Ft Myers and traveled north a second time. Whole communities were broken and washed away. 

   The rains dumped millions of gallons per minute all across the peninsula. Rains falling on the central highlands rose faster than they could flow away.  What poured onto the central area stacked up and moved slowly as a rising plane of water across land that was already flooded. A large part of the water flowed toward the Atlantic coast. But most of it slowly moved west and submerged what was already flooded. 

The bowl. 

   The coastal communities from Tampa south to Naples were caught between the central highlands on one side and the tidal surge on the other. The central highlands stood at an elevation of about 100 ft. The Tidal Surge pushed water up to 30 feet and beyond that with waves. In between the land filled up like a bowl. 

  Roads and airports were closed. There was no way to get out. The water level in the eastern suburbs of Tampa inched up hour after hour. Water from Lakeland and the central communities south of it began slowly flowing downhill toward Tampa. When it met the eastern edge of the tidal surge, it just piled on top of it.

  People began climbing on to their roofs and into the second floors of multistory buildings. In the lower lying areas, people went from the first floor to the second. Then from the second to the third. Sometimes they ran out of floors.

   More people drowned than in any recorded hurricane.

   The state was declared a disaster area. Many businesses and people decided to leave. Few could afford the insurance premiums. The damage was staggering. The shattered buildings would remain for years, slowly falling apart. 

   A few of the stalwarts purchased trailers and slowly began clearing the rubbish from their property. The the experience with Katrina had taught that the damage would remain for years. Local authorities relaxed the zoning laws to allow extended use of travel trailers. Parts of the state became a continuous trailer park.

Manuel

    Over the winter water temperatures remained higher than norma. When spring turned to summer, the warm breezes the rise of water temperatures had a head start. 

   In the panhandle, it had been considered a bad omen when the resort areas experienced a rain of tiny frogs at the beginning of summer. The old timers had talked about the legend of raining frogs but no one had ever seen one. Stormy weather was brewing in the western part of the gulf.

     The popular summer resort of Destin was situated on a relatively narrow strip of sand lying between Choctawhatchee Bay on the north and the Gulf on the south. Called Okaloosa Island, it was accessible to the mainland by four bridges. The island was about twenty miles long and one mile wide.

    In the second week of August, the normal population had ballooned to 40,000 with visitors. It was the last week of summer vacation before school resumed. While the Destin tourists soaked up the sun, Hurricane Manuel was safely out in the Gulf heading toward Texas. It was rated as a category two. At 9 pm it veered north toward New Orleans. At midnight, one hundred miles off the coast,  it turned east to travel parallel to the coast. Wind speed picked up and it was rated as a category three. At the same time, it slowly began falling away from the coast.

   Local authorities debated whether to call for an evacuation. After listening to the National Hurricane Center, they announced a ten percent chance of striking Destin. They put out a bulletin suggesting that if you were leaving the next day, now would be a good time leave. Between 1 and 2 am, Manuel picked up more speed and began traveling at 50 mph on a path which continued to drift away from the coast. They raised the danger level to fifteen percent. At 3 am, it reached category four status. The “hurricane crew”, as they were called, announced the danger level of eighteen percent and set off a series of three staccato sirens blasts. News casts showed the path of the hurricane but added that winds were pushing Manuel further and further from the coast. Few heard the news. Most of Destin slept.  

   Throughout the middle of the night, the Crew sat on the edge of their chairs. Of the six, two wanted to call for an evacuation even though no one in the room really believed that Manuel would strike Destin. What were the chances. The crew had seen many of these. All counted they had two thousand hurricane experiences amongst them. They calculated a two percent chance that Manuel would strike Destin. The published Danger Level was a ramped up version the odds. It was meant to overstate the statistics. One more vote and they would call for an evacuation.  But it was difficult to call for an evacuation when the stars were out, and the soft breeze was balmy. It was one of the most beautiful nights of the year. The sky was unusually clear. Occasionally, a meteor would streak across the sky. The conditions argued against danger. 

Turns toward Destin

   At 5 am, Manuel was adding miles between it and the coast. It was headed toward Cuba. Fisherman calculated the odds and set out to sea. Wind speeds were dropping. Travel speed was dropping. At current course and speed, it would pass 160 miles south of Destin and follow the same path as two recent hurricanes which dissipated over Cuba. The danger vote was dropping. It teetered at one and a half.  It looked like it would make for a rainy day at worst. At 6 am, the man at the radar softly called out “landfall Destin”. There was an audible gasp in the room. The winds of dawn had abruptly turned Manuel toward Destin. Someone said “Dear God”. They realized that Manuel had fooled them. They had lost their opportunity. They should have woken everyone at midnight. Local authorities scrambled.

   Winds speeds picked up. Manuel passed into category five status. At speeds of 160 mph, the winds were capable of inflicting catastrophic building failures.

   There was still hope that Manuel could turn in any direction. The odds were that it would drunkenly zig zag toward some other destination. The evacuation plan was put in effect. Sirens rang out every five minutes for the next two hours. All police and fire department personal were called in. All non essential businesses were closed. Police and volunteers were stationed at every intersection along the evacuation routes to facilitate the outward flow of traffic. There was a good plan. Hospitals along the way were alerted. Fuel suppliers from the neighboring counties were called in to replenish the gas stations. Alabama troopers were called to keep them moving up through their state all the way into Tennessee, Mississippi and Georgia. Volunteer Tow trucks were called in from neighboring states to keep the path open.

The Marinas

   The Marinas began methodically calling a long prearranged list of captains to pilot the big boats to safety in the west. If they outran the hurricane, good. If not, they were to steer them into the many sheltered inlets and rivers of Alabama and Mississippi. During Katrina, there were little fishing streams that turned into great lakes twenty miles inland. Later, they had to fish the `boats out of the fields.

People stunned

   People were stunned. They had gone to bed after a wonderful day at the beach and maybe stayed up a little later than usual because this was the last night of their vacation. Then they awoke to what sounded like a war zone. The media said to leave immediately. Not to bother to pack. Leave everything behind and run. If you didn’t have a car, hitchhike. Someone would pick you up.

   They had taken over all the lanes. Once across the four bridges, police were passing out alternate traffic maps to fan out the traffic over the many smaller roads of lower Alabama. Each little town put an evacuation assistance plan into effect.

   Manuel picked up windspeed and kept moving directly toward Destin. Travel speed over water was 30 mph. It was 120 miles away. They had four hours. The mayor did his calculations. So did the police and the firemen. There were four bridges. The east most bridge leading to Panama City would be used by the people in South Walton. The Destiners would have just three bridges. They would need to put 12,000 people across each bridge. That would be 4,000 vehicles total. which would be 1,100 per hour. which would be 20 cars per minute. It was doable. But it would be close. They had a fighting chance. 

Hurricane Party

   40,000 people less the ones who decided to stay behind. And there were a lot. The locals had seen this happen again and again. At the Sandpiper Grill in Santa Rosa Beach, plans had already been announced for another hurricane party. When the power went out, it was against the law to serve food or beverages. To get around this, they stocked up on beer and ice and hamburgers. They set up a charcoal grill on the porch. Customers made donations instead of payments. Most of the men were out boarding up buildings. They would arrive when the work was done. It had alway been great fun. Some of the locals looked forward to the hurricane party as the best event of the year. They considered themselves part of a brave and exclusive club. You cannot imagine what fun it was they would tell others. Each would get a free beer on the anniversary date the next month.

Bridges.

   It all depended the bridges. Normally they closed the bridges when wind speed reached 50 mph. Under these circumstances, the mayor declared that they would ignore that rule and keep the bridges open as long as possible. What was “as long as possible” someone asked. He took a deep breath and said “until cars start being blown off the bridge.” He heard himself saying the words but he could hardly believe it was his voice. It sounded to him like some voice from far off come to say words that he could not bear to say.

   Two hours later traffic was still moving. The rains were driving across the streets almost horizontally at 60 mph. They were strong enough to knock a man down. The Crew figured that three quarters of the people had gotten off the island. They needed just one more hour to get the rest off the island. 

   A few of the emergency workers had asked the question already. They had thought about it months if not years earlier. What if they didn’t have time to get everybody off the island. Twenty four hours would have been ideal. Twelve hours would have been pushing it. Most considered eight hours as  the lower limit of possibility. Six hours would have been miraculous. And they were trying to do it in four. 

Last Men Off the Island.

   There was a cadre of fire, policeman and emergency workers who were part of the evacuation planning committee. They called themselves the Last Men Off the Island. They had even called their meeting announcements by that name.

  A few of the LMOTI had spoken with each other as the hours rolled by. Now the time was rapidly approaching when they would not be the last men off the island. Either they would not leave or they would leave others behind.

Fireman

   Firemen prepared for the worst. On the North shore of Choctawhatchee Bay sat Eglin Air Force base, the largest USAF base in the world. There were a number of other bases along the gulf coast. There was a strong military tradition in the local uniformed services.  Some of the captains had war gamed the worst scenarios. What if Destin was struck with the same kind of waves which had struck Mississippi with Katrina. There had been a thirty foot tidal surge and thirty foot waves on top of that. There had been two story houses on the beach on stilts and the waves had rolled right over the top.

    There were places on the Island where the elevation was only twenty feet. If the water were to breach a low point, it could cut through the sand like butter. Between the mounting water in the bay on the north and the angry waves of the gulf on the south, millions of gallons could surge through a cut in seconds. In minutes, a surge could create a channel big enough for a large cruiser. Then the water would begin eating up the land like a ravenous beast. 

Fireman suit up

   The fireman suited up with super sized life preservers which served a double purpose. To protect them against flying debris, like a bullet proof vest and bigger to provide for extra buoyancy if they were swept into water. New members of the department were allowed to take a pledge after they had experienced their first category 3 hurricane. In an informal after hours ceremony, most of the men had pledged that they would stay until all who wanted to leave had left, or the water washed the land from beneath their feet and they floated away. 

   Word came in that water had breached dunes in San Destin on the eastern end of the island. Within seconds it had swallowed several hastily abandoned cars. It was tearing up the roads and eating up houses like they were made of straw. 

    The war gamers knew what this meant. Enough water given enough time could tear the island apart. It was nearly inconceivable but it was possible. The last men to leave the station knew they might never see it again. They said “See you on the north shore.” if they made it. 

Cell phone towers down

   A half hour before landfall, the telephone towers went down. Not that it mattered much. The wind howled so loud that there was no where to have an audible conversation. There in the midst of a freight train of driving rain and howling wind, the Mayor’s center began to break apart. Pieces of the roof were being torn away. Windows were breaking. The building was being pummeled by debris of the disintegrating building upwind. The electricity went off. Beneath the emergency lights, the Mayor literally called “Abandon ship”. There was nothing more to be done. Their families were already safely away. Now it was time to make their way as best they could. There was a heavy truck waiting outside.

Mayor to boat

   Earlier, the Mayor had called for his boat to be made ready. He wanted to be the last man off the island, by boat if necessary. His boat was docked at a marina on the bay a few blocks away. His plan was to get to the boat. If the engine failed, the wind alone would carry him across the bay. He had seen what had happened in New Orleans. Quite a few boats had safely made their way miles inland. Some ended up nested in trees.

   When he was sure that every one was gone. He made a run for it like a man under fire. Running from building to building and pausing in the lee of each to catch his breath. He could see the storm better now without the blur of windows. With his back against a brick wall, he gazed at water shooting past his little shelter on all sides. The force and the power of the storm was awesome. Even the earth shook. 

    Water was up to his ankles. The city was being submersed in a giant lake. In his career, he had never in his wildest dreams imagined such a sight. And he knew it would continue to rise. Three blocks back and two blocks from the marina was the main road. He passed abandoned cars shaking in the wind. He made it to the marina. The harbormaster took his job seriously. Temporary lights were on. The shortwave radio crackled. A couple old salts sat with a beers in hand and talked with the grim humor of soldiers going into battle. 

   As the mayor made ready to get to his boat, he remembered the last car he had passed. He fought his way back through the wind and crouched down in the shelter of the car. He beat on the door. A window came down. There were two terrified adults and two kids inside. He yelled at them. They couldn’t hear him. He waved at them to follow him. After a few seconds that seemed like an hour, they struggled out. He took one of the kids by the arm and scrambled the short distance to the harbor office. Dripping wet, he told the harbor master to take his boat and take the family to the other side. With a knowing look, the harbor master agreed. He knew that the small skiff had a capacity of four. Five was pushing it especially in these conditions. He led the family out into the wind and struggled to reach the nearest slip a dozen yards away. 

   The mayor helped them push off, fell down, and crawled back to office. It was rattling and shaking. One of the salts looked at the mayor and said “I guess you know that was the last boat.”  

Choctawhatchee

   The hurricane dumped so much rain into the watershed that Choctawhatchee Bay rose dozen feet. In the following hours the waters washed back and forth across the island, cutting a dozen wide pathways across the soft sand. Destin had the highest concentration of buildings in the panhandle and it was built on sand.  

   In many areas everything disappeared. The buildings and streets were washed away. Even the trees were torn away. Here and there a small patch of grasses remained. 

High rises

   Even the high rises were destroyed. The wind tore through them from front to back. leaving them as empty concrete shells. In some places, the enormous volume of water rushing against the high rise foundations created a vortex which sucked the sand from beneath their foundations. The wind pushed over the highrises like a great hand. Then the waters washed away whatever was left. When it was all over, the main island was gone. What remained were just a few small islands that were barely more than sandbars. It looked like it did two hundred years earlier except that here and there a lonely empty concrete tower stood surrounded by water.

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chapter 20

Economy After Florida

This is a long form text area designed for your content that you can fill up with as many words as your heart desires. You can write articles, long mission statements, company policies, executive profiles, company awards/distinctions, office locations, shareholder reports, whitepapers, media mentions and other pieces of content that don’t fit into a shorter, more succinct space.


Articles – Good topics for articles include anything related to your company – recent changes to operations, the latest company softball game – or the industry you’re in. General business trends (think national and even international) are great article fodder, too.


Mission statements – You can tell a lot about a company by its mission statement. Don’t have one? Now might be a good time to create one and post it here. A good mission statement tells you what drives a company to do what it does.


Company policies – Are there company policies that are particularly important to your business? Perhaps your unlimited paternity/maternity leave policy has endeared you to employees across the company. This is a good place to talk about that.


Executive profiles – A company is only as strong as its executive leadership. This is a good place to show off who’s occupying the corner offices. Write a nice bio about each executive that includes what they do, how long they’ve been at it, and what got them to where they are.

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