The Lady of Fatima: Has Mary Appeared in Visions?

THE LADY OF FATIMA- Introduction
Some Roman Catholics believe that Mary, the mother of Christ, has actually appeared to people in places like Fatima and Medjugorje. Well, did she?

THE LADY OF FATIMA- Biblical?
In evaluating the alleged appearances of Mary, our primary concern would be to determine whether these apparitions are indeed biblical. Interestingly enough, these “Marian apparitions” (as they are commonly referred to) are inextricably woven together with the official Catholic teachings about Mary which, by the way, is known as Mariology. In fact, it would be fair to say that Catholic Mariology is the very foundation of Marian apparitions. It’s been well said that a structure is only as solid as its foundation; and in looking at Marian apparitions, we need to examine the integrity of this whole concept referred to as Catholic Mariology.

THE LADY OF FATIMA- Background of Mariology
One of the striking features of Catholic Mariology is its support of Mary’s veneration or exaltation, on the basis of her special relationship to Christ (cf. Matt. 12:46-50; Luke 11:27-28). Other doctrines teach that Mary remained a virgin (cf. Matt. 1:25; 13:55-56); that she was born without sin (cf. Rom. 3:23); and that she was assumed or taken up to heaven. Just what are we to make of these pronouncements? First of all, they’re non-biblical, as these dogmas have absolutely no scriptural support. Also, they clearly contradict what the Bible already teaches. Of course, they’re also unchristian in the sense that their portrayal of Mary challenges and undermines Christ’s preeminent and unique role as Savior and Lord. For example, Mary is given the titles “coredemptrix” and “mediatrix” to signify her involvement (in of all things) mankind’s redemption (cf. 1 Pet. 1:20-21; 1 Tim. 2:5). Such a view of Mary — a view supported by the so-called Marian apparitions — is at best aberrant, and at worst heretical.

THE LADY OF FATIMA- Counter to Scripture
Well, the question remains. Are these apparitions just hallucinations? Are they psychological projections? Can they be written off as frauds? Or do they have a supernatural cause? Might they, in fact, be demonically-inspired deceptions (2 Cor. 11:14-15; 2 Thes. 2:9-10)? Well, that needs to be the subject of another “Perspective.” But whether they’re human or supernatural in origin, the fact remains that Marian apparitions promote a message that runs counter to what’s already revealed in Scripture. And that can only mean one thing — namely, that they are definitely not from God (Gal. 1:8-9).

THE LADY OF FATIMA- conclusion
On Marian apparitions, that’s the CRI Perspective. I’m Hank Hanegraaff.