Msgr. Orani Joao Tempesta, Cardinal-Archbishop of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, consecrated his country to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, on the occasion of the feast of the apparitions of Our Lady at Fatima, on May 13, 2020. An event followed by thousands of the faithful thanks to the Internet, due to the confinement required by the coronavirus pandemic.
“By her presence, the Virgin Mary wants to fill us with confidence and hope,” said the cardinal during the ceremony.
Cardinal Tempesta explained that the consecration of Brazil, carried out on May 13, 2020, consisted of “a kind of reverse pilgrimage”: whereas in general, the faithful come to honor Mary, “it is she who is making herself present in every home,” through the broadcast of the ceremony.
In his homily, the prelate recalled that the apparitions in Fatima in 1917 had occurred in a context marked by the First World War, the Spanish flu, and especially by the spread of ideologies contrary to the Catholic faith. 1917 is the year of the Bolshevik Revolution which through its atheism declared a veritable war against God.
Cardinal Tempesta exhorted the faithful “to listen to the message of Fatima again” and invited them “to a personal conversion.” “God knows the reasons for the exile we are going through,” said the cardinal, also asking everyone to pray “so that we will soon be able to participate in the celebrations in our churches.”
The states of Sao Paolo and Rio de Janeiro, hardest hit by the Covid-19 epidemic, have in fact imposed containment measures—notably affecting worship—harshly criticized by the Brazilian executive.