Category: Novena Prayers

3 Most Powerful Prayer for the Catholic Faithful

3 Most Powerful Prayer for the Catholic Faithful

Every catholic faithful especially those that know their faith will tell you Catholics are deep rooted in prayers. According to the Most Read Book in the world,‘’The BiBle’’.

Jesus Says through Saint Paul in His word That we should:

‘’Pray at all time that Ye may overcome the Evil days or perilous time’’

Every thing the Catholics do is towards Prayer. Every gathering involves at least one of the three most fervent and powerful prayer in the World.

They are the simplest of all prayers though.

They Include the following:

  1. The Holy Mass
  2. The Rosary
  3. The Angelus

The Holy Mass

The holy Mass summarizes the meaning of the coming of Jesus to the world, Death. His death was to redeem Man from Sin and reconciliation of the world back to His Father in Heaven. The Holy sacrifice of the Mass reminds God that His Son died For the Sinful World on the Cross. However, the Mass in itself though is the repetition of the death of Christ on the Cross which involves Blood as in the actual crucifixion, the Mass is Bloodless. Notwithstanding, it carries the same efficacy of the death of Christ on the Cross.

The Holy Mass is the highest form of Prayer. Catholics know this and would love to participate in this sacrifice of the mass daily as perfunctory.

The Holy Rosary:

The holy rosary is the second highest form of prayer after the holy mass. The rosary is also the summary of the coming of Jesus when the Angel Gabriel visited Mary with greetings from God to the death and Resurrection of Jesus after Three days in the Grave.The Prayer taught by Jesus, ‘’Our Father’’ is recited in it. The Apostles Creed of proclaiming their faith In God is recited as well as the The Angel greetings to Mary. WOW!!!This is indeed reminding God that he should have Mercy through his Son’s Death on the world

The Angelus

The Angelus is an angelic prayer via Angel Gabriel to Mary. The prayer announces Mary to the World through the benevolence of God to redeem Mankind through a woman’s acceptance of the will of God…

“May it be done as you have said onto me… the same version of Let your will be done “

All the three prayers is reminding God That He Sent His Son to die for US and to redeem US on the Cross. This is believing on the One God Sent That is Son; Jesus Christ. Any one who believes is already Gods adopted Sons and Daughter.Pray these prayers daily and attend Mass as much as you can and God will definitely answer US. Amen

Why You Should Read Augustine’s Confessions

Why You Should Read Augustine’s Confessions

A Neglected Masterpiece

Augustine’s famous aphorism about our souls being restless until they rest in God is part of our cultural heritage. I first encountered it as a freshman in college. But I did not read Augustine’s Confessions in its entirety until recently. My reading of this classic was long overdue.

All classics yield their treasures more fully if someone with experience takes us under wing and serves as a tour guide, but this is more crucial with Augustine’s Confessions than with most other classics. I believe that Augustine’s masterpiece is a largely unread book because people approach it with the wrong expectations, quickly become frustrated, and leave the book unfinished.

What the Confessions Is Not

The Confessions is usually classified as an autobiography, and this inaccurate labeling is the root of most readers’ difficulty. Augustine’s masterpiece is autobiographical, but it is not an autobiography. In its structure, it resembles entries in a personal journal more than an autobiography.

This is not to deny that the book has features that make it like an autobiography. For example, it is a first-person account of Augustine’s life. Moreover, in its overall organization the material is arranged according to the chronology of Augustine’s life from infancy to the age of thirty-three (with his famous conversion coming at age thirty-two).

But autobiographies are a narrative of events, and if we go to Augustine’s book expecting a narrative flow, we will be thwarted at every turn. Additionally, much of the Confessions does not deal with Augustine’s life at all.

What the Confessions Is

Although the genre of memoir is rarely applied to the Confessions, it is the right label. A memoir is a collection of remembrances accompanied by analysis. It is much more selective and piecemeal than an autobiography, being gleanings from a life that are brought together and analyzed by the author later in life. A memoir is how the author remembers and understands his or her life, while an autobiography is a documentary history that assembles the facts of a life.

The Confessions is primarily a retrospective analysis and assessment of what was happening to the author at various points in his life. The format is heavily reflective, with paragraphs often resembling entries in a journal. In the process, Augustine tells the history of his heart and soul. He began to write the book a decade after the last events that he records, perhaps to allay fears about a famous sinner having become Bishop of Hippo.

The Mixed-Genre Format

Calling the Confessions a memoir is only the start of identifying the Confessions. The thing that makes Augustine’s masterpiece simultaneously difficult and exciting is its mixed-genre format. I find it helpful to remind myself that Old Testament prophetic books like Isaiah and Jeremiah are also mixed-genre books, as are the Gospels.

The starting point for negotiating a mixed-genre book (which literary scholars also call an encyclopedic form) is to regard it as a mosaic of diverse parts. We can also look upon such books as anthologies of separate genres and selections. If we know from the start that the book will be a kaleidoscopic collection of diverse genres instead of a smooth-flowing narrative, we will not be frustrated and will find the variety entertaining (even though the Confessions is a book that we go to in the first place for edification).

The Narrative Element

I have no desire to excise the story aspect from the book. Like the book of Ecclesiastes, the Confessions uses narrative snatches, journalistic entries, and reflective pieces to tell an overarching story. The book is not organized like a story, but it tells a story.

I do not for a moment deny that Augustine is a master storyteller. In the Confessions, he gives us a memorable gallery of characters, including his mother Monica. By the time we end the book, we feel that we are part of a network of acquaintances. There are also momentous events told in a riveting way.

The primary story that Augustine tells is not the story of the external events in his life. Instead he tells three more profound stories, all at the same time. One is the story of his flight away from God. For thirty-two years, Augustine led a dissolute life of self-seeking careerism and sexual immorality. He was a latter-day Jonah, engaged in a futile quest to run away from God.

But interspersed passages, climaxing in the story of Augustine’s conversion, add a second story to the mix. It is the story of Augustine’s quest to find God. The mature author looks back at his seeming flight from God and interprets that flight as an attempt to find God. Paradox is at the heart of the Confessions. Running from God is actually searching for God.

But then Augustine puts a third layer on top of the foregoing two stories. Other interspersed passages show that Augustine believes that the real story was God’s pursuit of him. Today we call this the hound of heaven motif, based on a poem by that title authored by Victorian poet Francis Thompson (a poem obviously influenced by Augustine’s Confessions).

Augustine orchestrates his book in such a way that we can clearly see all three threads of action, but only if we are looking for them.

A Book of Prayers

The aspect of the Confessions that I like best is the prayers that make up a large portion of the book. At any point, Augustine is capable of addressing God directly in prayer. It is impossible not to read the Confessions devotionally. The prayers lend a conversational quality to the book, as though Augustine and God are engaged in continuous dialogue. This dialogue quality is enhanced by the pervasive biblical quotations and allusions, which come to seem like God speaking to Augustine.

I encourage readers to choose an edition of the book that identifies Bible references right in the text, and that encloses direct quotations from the Bible in quotation marks. Augustine’s frequent weaving of biblical phrases and verses into the texture of his book makes the Confessions an early-day Pilgrim’s Progress (in terms of how the author incorporates the Bible).

Why Read the Confessions?

Although relatively few people have read the entire Confessions, the most famous parts of it are part of cultural awareness, especially among Christians. I will end by noting two high points of the book, along with a stylistic quality, with the hope that my readers will resolve not to miss the opportunity to read the Confessions. A missed opportunity is a terrible waste.

The opening of the book is one of the most famous openings in all of literature: “Can any praise be worthy of the Lord’s majesty? . . . The thought of you stirs him so deeply that he cannot be content unless he praises you, because you made us for yourself and our hearts are restless till they rest in you.” Who would not want to read the book that follows that lead-in?

The climax of the whole book comes with Augustine’s conversion as narrated in Book 8. After thirty-two years of vain and dissolute life, Augustine came to the verge of a breakdown. While visiting an estate with a friend, Augustine was walking in a garden in total agitation and “in the bitter agony of my heart.” By God’s providence, Augustine thought he heard a child’s voice repeatedly chanting (as if in a child’s game), “Pick up and read. Pick up and read.”

Augustine interpreted it “solely as a divine command to me to open the [Bible] and read the first chapter I might find.” So he hurried to the place where his friend had remained, opened the Bible, “and in silence read the first passage on which my eyes lit.” The passage was Romans 13:13-14: “Not in riots and drunken parties, not in eroticism and indecencies; not in strife and rivalry, but put on the Lord Jesus Christ and make no provision for the flesh in its lusts” (Augustine’s translation).

Augustine tells us that he “neither wished nor needed to read further. At once, with the last words of this sentence, it was as if a light of relief from all anxiety flooded into my heart. All the shadows of doubt were dispelled.” Augustine’s addiction to sex vanished immediately, and he “had no ambition for success in this world.”

It is hard to top that, but I want to entice my readers with one additional incentive to “pick up and read” Augustine’s classic. Augustine had the aphoristic flair for composing concise memorable statements. He had a way with words, as we say. The following aphorism leaped out at me when I read it, and I have had no scarcity of occasions to quote it to my students: “Matters are so arranged at your [God’s] command that every disordered life is its own punishment” (translations vary).

Saint of the Day for Monday, May 6th, 2019-Patron Saint for Choirboy

Saint of the Day for Monday, May 6th, 2019-Patron Saint for Choirboy

St. Dominic Savio

Image of St. Dominic Savio

Facts

Feast day: May 6
Patron of choirboys, the falsely accused, and juvenile delinquents 
Birth: April 2, 1842
Death: March 9, 1857
Beatified By: March 5, 1950 by Pope Pius XII 
Canonized By: June 12, 1954 by Pope Pius XII

Dominic Savio was born on April 2, 1842 in the village of Riva in northern Italy. His father was a blacksmith and his mother a seamstress. He had nine brothers and sisters. His family was poor but hardworking. They were devout and pious Catholics.

When he was just two years old, Dominic’s family returned to their native village of Castlenuovo d’Asti, (Today, Castlenuovo Don Bosco) near the birthplace of John Bosco. Bosco would himself later be canonized as a Saint by the Church and became a major influence on the life of Dominic.

As a small child, Dominic loved the Lord and His Church. He was very devout in practicing his Catholic faith. For example, he said grace before every meal and refused to eat with those who did not. He was always quick to encourage others to pray.

Dominic attended Church regularly with his mother and was often seen kneeling before the Tabernacle in prayer. He even prayed outside the Church building. It did not matter to Dominic if the ground was covered with mud or snow, he knelt and prayed anyway.

Dominic was quickly recognized as an exceptional student who studied hard and performed well in school. He became an altar server. He also attended daily Mass and went to confession regularly. He asked to receive his first communion at the age of seven. This was not the practice in the Church of Italy at the time. Normally, children received their first holy communion at the age of twelve. Dominic’s priest was so impressed with his intelligence concerning the faith, his love for the Lord and his piety that he made an exception. Dominic said that the day of his First Communion was the happiest day of his life.

On the Day he received his first communion, Dominic wrote four promises in a little book. Those promises were:

I will go to Confession often, and as frequently to Holy Communion as my confessor allows.
I wish to sanctify the Sundays and festivals in a special manner.
My friends shall be Jesus and Mary.
Death rather than sin.

The young Dominic graduated to secondary school and walked three miles to school each day. He undertook this chore gladly. While walking to school on a hot day a farmer asked why he wasn’t yet tired. Dominic cheerfully replied, “Nothing seems tiresome or painful when you are working for a master who pays well.”

Although he was young, Dominic was clearly different than his peers. When two boys stuffed a school heating stove with snow and rubbish. The boys were known troublemakers and were likely to face expulsion if caught, so they blamed Dominic for the misdeed. Dominic did not deny the accusation and he was scolded before the class. However, a day later the teacher learned the truth. He asked Dominic why he did not defend himself while being scolded for something he did not do. Dominic mentioned he was imitating Jesus who remained silent when unjustly accused.

Dominic’s teacher spoke well of him and brought him to the attention of Fr. John Bosco, who was renowned for looking after hundreds of boys, many of them orphaned and poor. In October 1854, Dominic was personally introduced to Fr. Bosco – along with his father.

At the meeting, Bosco wanted to test Dominic’s intelligence and understanding of the Catholic faith. He gave Dominic a copy of The Catholic Readings, which was a pamphlet that dealt with apologetics. He expected Dominic to provide a report the next day, but just ten minutes later Dominic recited the text and provided a full explanation of its significance. This solidified Bosco’s high opinion of Dominic.

Dominic expressed an interest in becoming a priest and asked to go to Turin to attend the Oratory of St. Francis de Sales. Fr. Bosco agreed to take him.

At the Oratory, Dominic studied directly under Fr. Bosco. He worked diligently and always asked questions when he did not understand something. He renewed his First Communion promises that he wrote in his little book at the age of seven. After six months at the Oratory, Dominic delivered a speech on the path to sainthood. In his speech, he made three outstanding points; it is God’s will that we ALL become saints, it is easy to become a saint, and there are great rewards in heaven for saints.

Dominic’s desire to become a saint troubled him however. He wondered to himself how someone as young as he was could become a saint? In his zeal, he tried voluntary mortification and other voluntary penances, hoping that they would help him to grow closer to Jesus and help him to be less concerned with his own needs. He even made his bed uncomfortable and wore thin clothes in winter. When Fr. Bosco observed these practices, he corrected Dominic. He explained that as a child, what he should do instead was to devote himself to his studies and to be cheerful. He discouraged Dominic from any more physical penances. Dominic’s happy demeanor quickly returned.

At the same time Dominic was developing his reputation as a fantastic student, his health began to fail. He started to lose his appetite and Fr. Bosco became concerned. Dominic was taken to the doctor who recommended that he be sent home to his family to recover. Dominic wanted to stay at the oratory, but Fr. Bosco insisted he go home. Everybody expected Dominic to recover, except for Dominic himself who insisted he was dying.

Before he departed, Dominic made the Exercise of a Happy Death and predicted this would be his final devotion.

After four days at home, Dominic’s health worsened. The doctor ordered him to bed to rest. He then performed bloodletting, which was still performed at that time. Over the next four days, Dominic was bled ten times before the doctor was satisfied he would recover.

But Dominic was sure of his impending death. He implored his parents to bring the parish priest so he could make a last confession. They obliged him and Dominic made a confession and was given the Anointing of the Sick. He asked his father to read him the prayers for the Exercise of a Happy Death. Then he fell asleep. Hours later he awoke and said to his father: “Goodbye, Dad, goodbye … Oh what wonderful things I see!” Dominic fell asleep and died within minutes. It was March 9, 1857 and Dominic was merely 14 year of age.

His father wrote to Fr. Bocso to report the sad news.

Fr. Bosco was powerfully touched by Dominic and he wrote a biography, “The Life of Dominic Savio.” The biography quickly became popular and would eventually be read in schools across Italy. As people learned about Dominic, they called for his canonization.

Detractors argued that Dominic was too young to be canonized and pointed out that he was not a martyr. However, Pope Pius X disagreed and opened his cause for canonization.

Dominic Savio was declared venerable in 1933 by Pope Pius XI, beatified in 1950, then canonized in 1954 by Pope Pius XII.

Saint Dominic is the patron saint of choirboys, the falsely accused, and juvenile delinquents. His feast day is May 6, moved from March 9. Many schools and institutions dedicated to boys are dedicated to him.

The Story of Our Lady of Fatima, Detailed to Lucia Sainthood.

The Story of Our Lady of Fatima, Detailed to Lucia Sainthood.

Our Lady of Fatima

Our Lady of Fatima Feast Day May 13

On May 13, 1917, in Portugal, Our Lady of Fatima appeared to three children in a place called Cova da Iria.

It was at noon, and the children were shepherding sheep. Suddenly there was lightening, and the children, thinking that it was going to rain, began to run. Then, just above a holm oak tree, they saw a beautiful lady made of light, holding a rosary in her hand.

Our Lady of Fatima  Jacinta Lucia Francisco

Our Lady of Fatima spoke to the children and told them not to be afraid. “I come from Heaven,” she said. The oldest of the children was Lucía who was ten years old. She asked Our Lady of Fatima, “Will I go to Heaven?” “Yes,” Our Lady of Fatima answered. “And Jacinta,” who was her seven-year-old cousin, “Will she go to heaven too?” “Yes,” answered Our Lady of Fatima. “And Francisco,” the brother of Jacinta who was nine years old, “Will he go to Heaven?”  “Yes,” answered Our Lady of Fatima, but he will have to say many rosaries.”

Our Lady of Fatima Birthplace of Lucia

Our Lady of Fatima asked the children if they would pray and make sacrifice for sinners, and if they would come to this same place on the thirteenth of each month for five months. The children agreed and Lucía said “Yes.”  Only Lucía spoke to Our Lady of Fatima, the others listened.

This was the beginning of a new life for the children, for their sole purpose in life was to pray and make sacrifices for sinners. They would give their lunch to the sheep as a sacrifice, and perform other acts of mortification.

Our Lady of Fatima Home Of Jacina and Francisco

The children noted that the beautiful Our Lady of Fatima was sad, and they were sad also because of Our Lady of Fatima’s sadness.

On June 13, Our Lady of Fatima appeared again to the children. The conversation was to pray and make sacrifices and to pray the Rosary.

On July 13, Our Lady of Fatima appeared again and conveyed a secret to the children composed of three parts. The first two parts were revealed by Lucía in her memoirs in 1941 and the third part was released by Pope John Paul II in May 2000.

Regarding the first part, the vision of hell, Sister Lucía writes:

Our Lady of Fatima Jacinta Francisco Lucia

“Our Lady showed us a great sea of fire which seemed to be under the earth. 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. This vision lasted but an instant.

Our Lady of Fatima Francisco's Bedroom

“How can we ever be grateful enough to our kind heavenly Mother who had already prepared us by promising, in the first apparition, to take us to heaven? Otherwise, I think we would have died of fear and terror.

“The beautiful Lady proceeded to reveal the second part of the secret. We then looked up at Our Lady who said to us so kindly and so sadly: ‘You have seen hell where the souls of poor sinners go. To save them, God wishes to establish in the world devotion to my Immaculate Heart. If what I say to you is done, many souls will be saved and there will be peace. The war is going to end, but if people do not cease offending God, a worse one will break out during the pontificate of Pius XI.

Our Lady of Fatima Jacinta's Bedroom

‘When you see a night illuminated by an unknown light, know that this is the great sign given you by God that he is about to punish the world for its crimes, by means of war, famine and persecutions of the Church and the Holy Father. To prevent this, I shall come to ask for the consecration of Russia to my Immaculate Heart and the Communion of reparation on the First Saturdays.

‘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.

‘In the end, my Immaculate Heart will triumph. The Holy Father will consecrate Russia to me, and she shall be converted, and a period of peace will be granted to the world. In Portugal, the dogma of the Faith will always be preserved.’

“After Our Lady had revealed the secret to the children, she asked them to include a special prayer at the end of each decade of the Rosary.

‘Oh my Jesus, forgive us ours sins, save us from the fires of Hell. Lead all souls to Heaven, especially those who are in most need of Thy mercy.”

Our Lady of Fatima 1917 Apparition

On August 13, 1917, the three children were kidnapped by the mayor of Villa Nova de Ourem to whose district Fatima belonged.

The mayor was atheistic as were many in Portugal. In separate conversations with each of the three children, the mayor threatened death if they did not confess everything as a lie. However, the children did not give in to the mayor and professed the truth of Our  Lady of Fatima. As a result, the children could not meet Our Lady of Fatima because they were held in jail with common criminals for the night.

But according to witnesses, the children converted the men in the jail, and they all prayed in the cell.

In a previous apparition, Our Lady of Fatima had promised the children that on October 13, 1917, the final apparition, she would reveal her name and perform a great miracle to vindicate the truth of her apparitions.

Our Lady of Fatima Cova da Iria at Night

On August 19, 1917, when Our Lady of Fatima appeared unexpectedly, she told the children that on account of the behavior of the mayor, the miracle would not be as great as was her original intention. However, as we will see, it was truly spectacular.

On September 13, 1917, Our  Lady of Fatima appeared over the holm oak tree, the site of the first apparition.

Now, in the final apparition at Fatima, which took place on October 13, 1917, Lucía had publicly announced that Our Lady of Fatima would perform a great miracle to testify to the truth of the apparitions.

From the previous day, many people were traveling toward the area. There were not only those with faith but also the atheistic communists and the secular newspaper reporters who were convinced that they would write a story discrediting the entire event as a hoax. Suddenly, it began to rain. The field where people were gathering turned into a field of mud. Seventy thousand people were present to see the miracle.

Our Lady of Fatima Cova da Iria at Night

At 12 o’clock noon, Lucía pointed up at the sky. “The sun appeared as a disc that gave off various colors and could be looked at without difficulty; it spun like a fireball and looked as if it would fall to the earth.” Suddenly, the sun broke free of its orbit and began to plunge to the earth. All seventy thousand people were in panic. Many were heard to say, “God have mercy on me.”

Then the sun stopped and returned to its place in the sky, and it turned into a beautiful day. People become aware that their clothes were dry.

In addition to those present at the event, others far away also saw the prodigal in the sky. Newspapers reported the sun falling from the sky as, “The Sun Danced.”

Lucía says that during this event, Our  Lady of Fatima appeared in the sky with Saint Joseph. Our Lady of Fatima was holding a brown scapular, and
Saint Joseph was holding the Child Jesus. Our Lady of Fatima said, “I am the Lady of the Rosary.”

During one of the apparitions, Our Lady of Fatima foretold that Jacinta and Francisco would die soon but that Lucía would remain longer to spread devotion to her Immaculate Heart. After the events at Fatima, Our Lady of Fatima continued to appear discretely to each child individually from time to time.

Our Lady of Fatima Early Burial Place of Jacinta and Francisco

Francisco died in 1919 and Jacinta in 1920, both from disease. When Our Lady of Fatima appeared to Jacinta, she gave her information about her death. “You will die in a hospital, away from your family, alone.”   Jacinta’s death was as Our Lady of Fatima said.

Jacinta and Francisco were saints from the first day Our Lady of Fatima appeared to them on May 13, 1917. They gave themselves up to prayer and sacrifice for sinners and prayer for the pope. Once the beautiful Our Lady of Fatima had appeared to them, they lost all interest in the worldly life.

Lucía took the name Sister Maria Lucía of the Immaculate Heart of Mary when she became a Carmelite nun.

In 2000, on May 13 in Fatima, Pope John Paul II beatified Jacinta and Francisco as Blesseds of Heaven.  Sister Lucía was present.

The third part of the secret given to the children on July 13, 1917, was written by Sister Lucía in 1944, but the text was not revealed until 2000.

On May 13, 1981, there was an assassination attempt on the life of Pope John Paul II. Shortly afterward His Holiness read the third part of the secret of Fatima but chose not to reveal it at that time. Coinciding with the May 13, 2000, Beatification of Jacinta and Francisco, The Holy Father released the third part of the secret.

This part refers to violent hands being laid on a pope and others as well – bishops, priests, men and women religious and various lay people.

Sister Lucía recently said that it now appears ever more clear that the purpose of all the apparitions was to help people to grow more and more in faith, hope and love.

Our Lady of Fatima recalls frequently forgotten values. She reminds us that the future of humankind is in God, and that we are active and responsible partners in creating that future. Our Lady of Fatima wants all of us to stop offending God; the same message as at Lourdes to Saint Bernadette. She reminds us that hell exists.

Ultimately, Our Lady of Fatima asks us to fervently pray the Rosaryevery day, pray for sinners and the pope, and perform sacrifices in reparation for our sins.

(source)

Sister María Lúcia of the Immaculate Heart of Mary (nee Lucía de Jesús dos Santos), the oldest of the three children to whom Our Lady of Fatima appeared, died on Sunday, February 13, 2005, at 5:25 P. M. at the age of 97, at the Carmelite Convent of Saint Teresa at Coimbra in Portugal where she was buried for a year at her request so that the nuns could mourn privately.  In February, 2006, Sister María Lúcia was reinterred at Fatima.

Pope John Paul II sent a condolence message read at Sister María Lúcia’s funeral attended by hundreds of mourners which said he “…always felt lifted by the daily gift of her prayers, especially in difficult and testing moments of suffering.”

Mel Gibson visited Sister María Lúcia in July of 2004 and gave her a DVD of his movie The Passion of the Christ

Pope Benedict XVI has fast-tracked Sister Lúcia’s road to sainthood by eliminating the five-year waiting period to start the canonization process.