“At the left of Our Lady and a little above, we saw an Angel with a flaming sword in his left hand; flashing, it gave out flames that looked as though they would set the world on fire… pointing to the earth with his right hand, the Angel cried out in a loud voice: ‘Penance, Penance, Penance!’”
The day was May 13, 1917. In the quiet village of Fatima, Portugal, three young children, ages 7, 9 and 10, were out in a field. Suddenly, they saw in the air “a Lady all in white, more brilliant than the Sun… indescribably beautiful.” Over the next five months, She appeared to Lúcia, Francisco and Jacinta regularly on the same day each month. During one appearance, the Lady revealed to them a secret in three parts: First, the children were shown a vision of hell where the wicked humans were being burned in “an ocean of fire.” Second, the Lady showed them that World War I would soon be over, but if the people did not stop offending God, there would be a World War II. The third part of the Secret of Fatima was not supposed to be told to others, according to the Lady’s instruction. But Sister Lúcia finally shared it with the Vatican in 1941, because as a Carmelite nun, she had to obey orders to do so.
“Our Lady of Fatima” refers to the Venerated Blessed Mother Mary when She appeared at that particular location. In fact, there have been at least hundreds or thousands of such Heavenly visitations all around the globe – even till today. They often occurred to children or those of humble backgrounds, perhaps because they were more pure and receptive.
The Blessed Saint Mary would appear for different, compassionate purposes. For example, in 1858, Our Lady of Lourdes in France famously led 14-year-old Saint Bernadette to a spring whose waters could heal; many medical cures were confirmed ever since. In Poland, Our Lady of Gietrzwałd reportedly performed a similar miracle after appearing to two young girls in 1877.
At other times, the Blessed Mother Mary protected and rescued lives. During the Boxer Rebellion in 1900, Our Lady of China, dressed in white, answered a local priest’s prayers by causing attackers to flee from the village of Donglu. In 1798, Our Lady of La Vang in Âu Lạc (Vietnam) taught a group of persecuted Catholics how to cure themselves using the jungle herbs around them. She appeared in Trà Kiệu, Vietnam or Âu Lạc, also in another story. The commander who took his soldiers to persecute this Catholic village in 1885, saw “a beautiful woman, dressed in white, standing on the roof of the church, thus it was impossible to take aim.” He also saw young children with shining silver swords fly down from the sky to defend the parishioners.
In past lectures, Supreme Master Ching Hai has offered deeper spiritual insights into the remarkable phenomena we call “Marian apparitions,” or appearances of Saint Mary.
“When people see an appearance... because they are Catholic country or Christian country, they presume that that is the Virgin Mary. Nevertheless, She can also exist, why not? And the Virgin Mary does not actually have to be a person, you see? It’s a power of the universe or maybe an angel that can also assume the appearance of a Virgin Mary to bless people.
And just, maybe the kids or the people who saw that, they were pure at heart, and they were praying with their sincerity. And so the angels or the spiritual Inner Master or whomever, took pity on them, and appeared, to comfort them or to bring them happiness, to bless them. But because the children or whoever saw the vision over there, so they think the Virgin Mary appeared there. But it is not true! We can see the Virgin Mary anywhere. Even in our own home, some of our meditation practitioners see Her or (Lord) Jesus or (Lord) Buddha. That doesn’t mean (Lord) Buddha appears there! It’s just that, because you went into a different dimension and saw Them at that time.”
“(With the soul body, I’ve sometimes met Saints.) Yes. (I’ve met Mother Mary, I met Jesus Christ,) Wow. (and three times I’ve met Master.) Wow!” “([Saint] Mary started talking to me.) (Saint) Mary talked to you? Wonderful. (I wonder if it’s possible?) Yes, possible. It’s possible.” “(Not long ago, I went through a difficult time. During that time, while I was meditating, You embraced me as shown in a painting where Saint Mary embraces the baby Jesus. I felt warmth emerging from Your embrace. I used to like that painting very much. Since then, my lonely emotions have dissipated completely.)”
Master also once explained that the miraculous appearances of Saint Mary to Catholics around the globe, could actually be one of the forms of the omnipresent Rescuer who in Buddhism is worshipped as Quan Yin Bodhisattva. (And as many of our Association members confirmed in their inner visions, Quan Yin Bodhisattva and Supreme Master Ching Hai are one!)
“Quan Yin Bodhisattva appeared in many different forms depending on the sentient beings’ affinity with Her. Suppose Quan Yin Bodhisattva came in the same appearance every time, some people would not like that appearance because they never believed in Buddhism. They might like Saint Mary. Then what should Quan Yin Bodhisattva do? Should She not save them? She would appear as Saint Mary. Whatever appearance the sentient beings liked, Quan Yin Bodhisattva would appear in that form because She is compassionate, and She wanted to save the sentient beings. Quan Yin Bodhisattva would not reject anyone no matter what names they worshiped, because all the names meant the same thing to Her. She is a Being with a name that cannot be named.”
As evidence that the Marian apparitions could be manifestations of a great Divine Power or Being like Quan Yin Bodhisattva, we recall that Her appearance varies from place to place, considering the people’s culture. Hence, the Blessed Saint Mary wore the traditional áo dài dress in Âu Lạc (Vietnam) and had blue eyes and blonde hair in Germany. Also, to help humans recognize Her, She would choose to appear like Her statues, holding a child in Her arms, though not always.
In 1937, Saint Mary began appearing to four girls, of ages 12 to 14, at the small town of Heede in Germany. She revealed to them that She was the “Powerful Mediatrix of Grace,” meaning a Mediator on humans’ behalf. She also said that humans could invoke Her as the “Queen of the Souls of Purgatory” and as the “Queen of the Universe.” Wow! This makes us wonder whether this was actually a manifestation of Supreme Master Ching Hai, who negotiates with Heavens on behalf of our world; hence, She is the “Powerful Mediatrix of Grace.”
“I had to fight with Heaven also. I said, ‘You don’t have to destroy the whole planet.’ And of course we have to donate (spiritual points). Negotiation. On and off the table.”
Master also rescues unprecedented numbers of souls from purgatory and hell, thus fitting the title of “Queen of the Souls of Purgatory.”
“These are only for the dead people who suffer in hell or in some unfavorable realms. So, all together, it’s about 731,114,123 souls. They all go to the New Land. (Wow!) I mean, New Spiritual Tim Qo Tu’s.”
“Queen of the Universe” also resembles Master’s Name in Heaven: Tim Qo Tu ‒ “The Loved Lord of All Worlds.”
“The ‘Tim Qo Tu’ doesn’t just mean ‘all worlds’ beloved Lord, but also means ‘the Lord who loves all worlds.’”
Sometimes, the Blessed Mother Mary would come to teach and forewarn about imminent retributions. For example, on January 27, 1897, Marie Martel, a French Catholic with exceptional clairvoyance, heard the Blessed Saint Mary speak to her at a field called Tilly-sur-Seulles in Normandy: “My child, we must pray well, especially for Martinique, because it is being punished and it will be by a rain of fire from Heaven that cannot be extinguished. Many will perish. Those who remain, if they refuse to convert, a second blow will be dealt.”
Five years later on May 8, 1902, Mount Pelée erupted in Martinique, a French island in the Caribbean, within minutes wiping out the nearly 30,000 inhabitants of the wealthy port town of Saint-Pierre. Twelve days later, a second eruption killed 2,000 rescuers and others. It was the world’s deadliest volcanic disaster of the 20th century. Martinique and the world were undoubtedly shocked. Many were convinced that Divine judgment had been measured upon a sinful city, once called the “Paris of the Caribbean,” instantly burnt to ashes. Similarly, on a global scale, Mother Mary has been alerting us all of an even greater planetary Chastisement, if we do not repent and change our destructive way of life.
This brings us back to the Third Secret of Fatima: “At the left of Our Lady and a little above, we saw an Angel with a flaming sword in his left hand; flashing, it gave out flames that looked as though they would set the world on fire; but they died out in contact with the splendor that Our Lady radiated towards him from Her right hand: pointing to the earth with his right hand, the Angel cried out in a loud voice: ‘Penance, Penance, Penance!’”
It is interesting to note that in this vision, the Blessed Mother blocked the Great Chastisement from befalling our world, at least for a while. Other Marian testimonies also reveal Her crucial role of intervention at this most uncertain time for our world.
For instance, in 1954, the Blessed Elena Aiello of Italy had this inner revelation from Lord Jesus Christ: “The world no longer deserves forgiveness but fire, destruction and death. There must be much penance and prayer on the part of the faithful to mitigate the deserved punishment that is now being held back by the intervention of my Holy Mother who is also Mother of all men.”
Sister Agnes Katsuko Sasagawa of Japan received the following message from Our Lady of Akita in 1973. “As I told you, if men do not repent and better themselves, the Father will inflict a terrible punishment on all humanity. It will be a punishment greater than the deluge, such as one will never have seen before. If sins increase in number and gravity, there will be no longer pardon for them. I ALONE AM ABLE STILL TO SAVE YOU FROM THE CALAMITIES WHICH APPROACH. THOSE WHO PLACE THEIR CONFIDENCE IN ME WILL BE SAVED.”
“Grace period has already been kind of terminated long ago. Just I plead with Heaven, be more lenient because humans, they are being poisoned, they have been misled, they have been brainwashed, all kinds of bad influences from maya and from zealous demons. And anytime they can U-turn now, and I will be standing by. But it also depends on how much merit they have as well. (Yes, Master.) So, combine that with their previous life merit and their sincerity, and their humble prayers and repentance, that would help somehow. And if they die, I could find an excuse to help their souls to go up to Heaven.”