Today marks the hundred and third anniversary of the final apparition at Fatima, when Our Lady appeared for the last time – at least in a public way, for they continue to have private visions – to the three seers October, 1917, during some of the worst days of World War I, and just before the Spanish Influenza would kill millions across the globe. Unlike most flus, this on targeted mainly the young and healthy (for complex physiological reasons) including the two young visionaries, Jacinta and Francesco, who predicted their own deaths.
As readers likely know, the thousands – perhaps tens of thousands – who gathered to see what they could see were huddling in a torrential downpour, drenched to their skins and then some, when, during the vision, the Sun began to dance and whirl in the sky, hurtling towards the Earth, then receding, emitting a warm and wonderful array of all the colours of the spectrum. After the Sun returned to normal – is there a normal after such things? – everyone was perfectly dry and warm.
There are any number of prophecies and revelations at Fatima, none of which we are strictly bound to accept (even the dancing Sun, whose provenance we know not – did the million-mile orb really unhinge in deep space? quia non erit inpossibile apud Deum omne verbum). We are only bound to accept with Faith those things already in public revelation (such as the existence of judgement, heaven and hell, the need for reparation, that Our Lady intercedes for mankind, and so on).