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Second Miracle of Fatima Shepherd Children


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> Listen to "Miracle Hunter" Michael O'Neill interviewed on Morning Air about the approval of the second miracle (go to 43:00)

> Listen to "Miracle Hunter" Michael O'Neill interviewed on Kresta in the Afternoon about the approval of the second miracle

Updated May 1, 2017

On Thursday, March 23, 2017 during an audience granted to Cardinal Angelo Amato, Pope Francis authorized the promulgation of a decree of the Congregation for the causes of the saints recognizing the authenticity of a miracle through the intercession of two of the Fatima shepherd children, Francisco and Jacinta Marto. Francisco (1908-1919) died on April 4, 1919 at age 10, and his younger sister Jacinta (1910-1920), who was 9 years old, died the following year also from the Spanish flu on February 20, 1920. Since the apparitions in 1917, they lived a life of prayer and sacrifice for peace and the conversion of sinners as the Virgin Mary had requested.

On April 20th the consistory of cardinals approved that Pope Francis during his trip to Fatima on May 12-13, 2017, for the centenary of the Virgin Mary's apparitions at the Cova da Iria, will include the canonization of the children, making them the youngest non-martyr saints in the history of the Catholic Church. Some precedent exists in that on his Fatima pilgrimage for the Jubilee of the Year 2000, St. John Paul II beatified the children.

To become a saint, two miracles are required - typically inexplicable medical healings - one for beatification and another miracle for canonization (subsequent to the beatification).

The 2nd miracle just approved for canonization is the cure of a young Brazilian boy. In April 2nd interview with Michael O'Neill on The Miracle Hunter® program on Relevant Radio, Sister Angela Coelho, the vice-postulator of the canonization causes for the shepherd children, the details are not being made available by the Vatican due to privacy concerns. The family will decide whether or not to release the information.

In an April 30th interview with investigative journalist Andrew Rabel from Inside the Vatican (go to 27:42), it was revealed that the miracle involved a traumatic bran injury due to a fall. Rabel cites "reliable" unnamed sources from Portugal saying that the loss of brain matter in a skull fracture due to a fall would have left the child incapacitated for life if not for the intercession of the child visionaries. He reports that a press conference with the parents - still done anonymously - is in the works for May 11th. Vatican sources have confirmed this event.

A first miracle obtained by their joint intercession was recognized by Pope St. John Paul II on June 28,1999 and used for their beatification. On March 25, 1987, María Emilia Santos of Leiria, Portugal, a paraplegic who on the anniversary of the death of Jacinta on February 20, 1989 began to get better, to sit in her bed without help and pain, until she could stand and later walk.

For a medical healing to be declared to be without natural explanation, it must fulfill a strict set of criteria, including:

1. Serious medical condition;

2. Condition not likely to disappear on its own;

3. Instantaneous;

4. Lasting;

5. Complete;

6. No other disease or incident can occur which may have caused the condition to disappear;

7. No medical treatment relative to the cure.

See episode of Dr. Oz where "Miracle Hunter" Michael O'Neill is interviewed about the criteria used in sainthood causes:

The Consulta Romana, the medical board tasked with examining alleged miraculous cures, must decide whether to approve the cure as being without scientific explanation according to current medical knowledge. Pope Francis this past year tightened the rules for canonizations - he changed the necessary approving vote to be a quorum (5 out of 7 or 4 out of 6, depending on the medical group size) from just being a simple majority. Also In case a miracle report is rejected on the first go-around, it may only be reexamined a total of three times. Now with each new reexamination, new members must be named to the consulting body.

See episode "How the Catholic Church Validates Medical Miracles": of EWTN Web series "Miracle Hunter":

After the miracle passes the scrutiny of the medical board, theologians must review whether the healing was clearly through the intercession of a specific saint (or in this case as in the case of the Martins, the parents of St. Therese, that they were invoked together). Catholics may seek the intercession of Jesus or Mary, but calling upon other already canonized saints will invalidate it as a miracle worked by the potential saint in process.

The final approval of the date of May 13th for the canonizations of Bl. Francisco and Jacinta Marto will occur on April 20, 2017 when cardinals will express their opinion at the consistory. A favorable majority will allow the date to be set for Pope Francis's visit, culminating in a Mass for the 100th anniversary of the first apparition.

The diocesan phase has just ended for the canonization of the oldest of the children visionaries, Lucia dos Santos (March 22,1907- February 13, 2005), who later became a Carmelite in Coimbra, and died at 97. But it will still take some time to examine some 15,000 documents communicated by the Diocese of Coimbra and the expert reports on the alleged miracle. The postulator, Father Romano Gambalunga, has requested "patience" with the proceedings of her cause.

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