Why the Hostility Towards Fatima?
The contradiction between the message of Our Lady of Fatima and the new orientation in the Church since Vatican II is striking. Whatever the “Spirit of the Council” emphasizes and exalts, is condemned by Our Lady (ecumenism, religious liberty, collegialism); whatever the Council despises and ignores, is emphasized and exalted by Our Lady (social Kingship of Our Lord, role of Our Lady as Mediatrix of all graces, importance of penance, atonement, reparation for sins).
In 1907 Saint Pius X had condemned modernism and removed all modernists from any influential positions in the Church. During the pontificate of Pope Pius XI modernist theologians little by little regained influence especially in the liturgical and exegetic movement. Pope Pius XII complained that the neo-modernists had already infiltrated the Church everywhere. In 1950 he condemned them again in his encyclical Humani Generis. Many of them were removed from their positions as professors and their theological theories condemned like Pierre Teilhard de Chardin SI, Henri de Lubac SI, Karl Rahner SI, Yves Congar OP etc. Many others, however, remained and continued discretely to reintroduce modernist ideas especially into the seminaries and amongst the youth. One of them, Fr. Dhanis SI, was the first to attack the message of Fatima in 1944–1945. At that time, Pius XII rejected energetically these theses which spread quite rapidly amongst those who were influenced by neo-modernist ideas.
1952 marks the tragic change in Rome concerning Fatima. At this time, Fr. Dhanis was already the rector of the Gregorian University in Rome, the modernist Cardinal Bea was the confessor of Pius XII, the adepts of neo-modernism regained, day after day the key positions in the Church. Pius XII, who on one hand fought against neo-modernism was however on the other influenced by them. His increasing reserve towards Fatima goes hand in hand with the increasing power of the progressists in Rome.
The two goals of the modernists were:
1. to fight against traditional theology and against the old-fashioned Christian order (which concentrates on supernatural life, the salvation of souls, the understanding of human life as a preparation for eternity, the spiritual warfare between Heaven and Hell, God and the devil etc.), and
2. to promote their own ideas which they praise as modern, up to date, fitting for our world (which emphasizes the efforts for happiness in this world, the fraternal union of all people, the value of individual freedom etc.). Already Bl. Pius IX, but also St. Pius X and Pius XII had warned that the principal theses of the modernists come from the liberalism of the 18th century promoted and spread particularly by Freemasonry, and all denounced such theses.
Our Lady in Fatima warned earlier about the “errors of Russia” and we have seen in Chapter 1 that the whole Fatima movement during 50 years after the apparitions was a continuous victory of Our Lady against the Communists, Freemasons and Heretics in all places visited by her Pilgrim Statue.
However, when the modernist theses were finally received by the Hierarchy of the Church during the Second Vatican Council, it became clear that the voice of Our Lady of Fatima had to be silenced as well as all other voices of bishops and priests who would not accept the reforms issued by this Council. Therefore, after the Council a regular persecution of Catholic Tradition was launched during 40 years. It is interesting and important to realize that Fatima was also severely censored and its essential message (refusal to reveal the Third Secret, Sr. Lucia completely silenced, the main contents of Fatima buried etc.) equally rejected with the employment of similar means: rejection and / or assimilation.
The first victim of the modernist attack was Our Lady herself: first her message was distorted and derided; during the Second Vatican Council She was ignored and her dignity degraded through the refusal to mention her privileges and her role in the Church as Mediatrix, Corredemptrix, spiritual Mother and universal Queen. After her came the despising and condemnation of her faithful children who by all means wanted to remain faithful to Catholic Tradition. Therefore, nobody should be astonished by such treatment: if they have done it with Our Lady, they may do it with everyone and everything in the Church. On the contrary, it should be an honour for the faithful children to surround their rejected and sorrowful Mother and participate in her sufferings and abjection. On the other hand, Our Lady of Fatima is like the mother of the Maccabees, the heavenly consolation of all her children. As She was the source of strength and consolation for St. Mary Magdalene and St. John at the foot of the Cross, so She never abandons all those who want to stand faithfully beneath the Cross of Our Lord.