|July 13, 1917
apparition brought to the Cova da Iria a crowd of 5,000 people. Lucy led the
Rosary and the crowd answered.
The apparition then began in the usual way, with a flash of something like lightning and the appearance of Our Lady atop the holm-oak. Lucy relates the apparition in her memoirs:
‘What does Your Grace want of me?’ I asked.
‘I want you to come here on the 13th of next month, to continue reciting the Rosary every day in honor of Our Lady of the Rosary, in order to obtain peace in the world and the end of the war, because only She can help you.’
‘I should like to ask You to tell us who You are, and to work a miracle so that everyone will believe that Your Grace is appearing to us.’
‘Continue to come here every month. In October, I will say who I am and what I want, and I will perform a miracle so that all might see and believe.’
Here I made some requests which I do not remember. What I do remember, is that Our Lady said it was necessary to say the Rosary in order to obtain these graces throughout the year.
Our Lady continued: ‘Sacrifice yourselves for sinners, and say often to Jesus, especially whenever you make a sacrifice: O Jesus, it is for love of Thee, for the conversion of sinners, and in reparation for the sins committed against the Immaculate Heart of Mary.’
As Our Lady spoke these last words, She opened Her hands once more, as She had done during the two previous months. The rays of light seemed to penetrate the earth, and we saw as it were a sea of fire. Plunged in this fire were demons and souls in human form, like transparent burning embers, all blackened or burnished bronze, floating about in the conflagration, now raised into the air by the flames that issued from within themselves together with great clouds of smoke, now falling back on every side like sparks in huge fires, without weight or equilibrium, amid shrieks and groans of pain and despair, which horrified us and made us tremble with fear. (It must have been this sight which caused me to cry out, as people say they heard me). The demons could be distinguished by their terrifying and repellent likeness to frightful and unknown animals, black and transparent like burning coals. That vision lasted only a moment, thanks to our good Mother of Heaven, Who, at the first apparition, had promised to bring us to Heaven. Without that, I think we would have died of terror and fear.
Terrified and as if to plead for succor, we looked up at Our Lady, who said to us, so kindly and so sadly:
‘You have seen hell where the souls of poor sinners go. To save them, God wishes to establish in the world devotion to My Immaculate Heart. If what I say to you is done, many souls will be saved and there will be peace. The war is going to end; but if people do not cease offending God, a worse one will break out during the reign of Pius XI. When you see a night illumined by an unknown light, know that this is the great sign given you by God that He is about to punish the world for its crimes by means of war, famine, and persecutions of the Church and of the Holy Father.
‘To prevent this, I shall come to ask for the consecration of Russia to My Immaculate Heart, and the Communion of Reparation on the First Saturdays. If My requests are heeded, Russia will be converted and there will be peace; if not, she will spread her errors throughout the world, causing wars and persecutions of the Church. The good will be martyred, the Holy Father will have much to suffer, various nations will be annihilated. In the end, My Immaculate Heart will triumph. The Holy Father will consecrate Russia to Me, and she will be converted, and a period of peace will be granted to the world. In Portugal, the dogma of the Faith will always be preserved, etc. Do not tell this to anybody. Francisco, yes, you may tell him.
‘When you pray the Rosary, say after each mystery: O my Jesus, forgive us, save us from the fires of hell. Lead all souls to Heaven, especially those who are most in need.’
After this, there was a moment of silence, and then I asked, ‘Is there anything more that You want of me?’
‘No, I do not want anything more of you today.’
Then, as before, Our Lady began to ascend towards the east, until She finally disappeared.
In the cycle of the apparitions, the apparition of July 13 is decidedly the most