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Pope Approves Beatification of Sister Lucia, the Last of the Three Little Shepherds, Seers of the Virgin of Fatima

During the Audience given to Cardinal Mercello Semeraro, Prefect of the Dicastery for the Causes of Saints, Pope Francis authorized that Dicastery to promulgate Decrees regarding several Servants of God, among whom is Sister Lucia, seer of the Virgin of Fatima, in Portugal.

As is known, in 1917 the Virgin Mary appeared to three little shepherds in Cova di Iria, Portugal: Lucia dos Santos, 10; Jacinta Marto, 7; and Francisco Marto, 9. Jacinta and Francisco died very young, and Lucia entered the Convent of the Discalced Carmelites in Coimbra. She resided there until her death. It was Lucia who certified the secrets revealed by the Virgin, including the third secret related to the attack on Saint John Paul II. 

Sister Lucia died in the odour of sanctity in 2005; she was 97. Benedict XVI dispensed the obligation to wait five years to begin her process of Beatification. Pope Francis canonized Saint Francisco and Saint Jacinta in 2017. 

With the recognition of her heroic virtues, Sister Lucia now advances in her cause of Canonization, namely, with the public recognition of the holiness of the seer and Carmelite nun. 

The other Servants of God, whose martyrdom and heroic virtues were also recognized, are:  

  • The martyrdom of the Servants of God Manuel González-Serna Rodríguez and his 19 companions, diocesan priests, seminarians, and lay men and women killed out of hatred for the faith in Spain in 1936.
  •  The heroic virtues of the Servant of God Antônio de Almeida Lustosa, of the Salesian Society of Saint John Bosco, Archbishop of Fortaleza, born on February 11, 1886 in São João del Rei, Brazil, and died on August 14, 1974 in Carpina, Brazil.
  • The heroic virtues of the Servant of God Antonio Pagani (in the world: Marco), professed priest of the Order of Minor Brothers, Founder of the Society of Resigned Sisters Daughters of Mary Immaculate, born in 1526 in Venice, Italy, and died on January 4, 1589 in Vicenza, Italy.
  • The heroic virtues of the Servant of God Mary Lange (born: Elizabeth), Foundress of the Institute of Oblate Sisters of Divine Providence, born around 1794 in Santiago de Cuba, Cuba and died on February 3, 1882 in Baltimore, Maryland, USA. 
  • The heroic virtues of the Servant of God Ana Cantalupo (in the world: Pia), of the Society of the Daughters of Charity of Saint Vincent de Paul; born September 3, 1888 in Naples, Italy, and died March 17, 1983 in  Catania, Italy.