Since this topic came up recently in discussions, I'd like to discuss Our Lady of Fatima - the event when Our Mother Mary appeared to people in Fatima.
Before I was Catholic, this story seemed incredulous to me. How could they claim that the Virgin Mary really showed up in Fatima? If you aren't familiar with the story, I highly recommend you go read about it.
I set out to quickly prove that this could never have happened. I mean, it didn't sync with anything in my faith at the time. Of course, the best option for me was to turn to scientific skeptics - the same people who refute things like the resurrection of Christ. I knew, doctrinally, that Mary could never have appeared to these people nor could they have seen what they supposedly did. 70,000 people witnessed something incredible there, not an easy thing to explain.
Unfortunately, I could not come to a good conclusion. I finally concluded that the best explanation for Fatima was "mass hallucination'. I publicly told people that's what I believed happened at Fatima. People were so in tune to wanting to see it that they actually did. The prophecies that were fulfilled (such as one sister dying after all the rest) were merely coincidental.
Now I look back on this and wonder why I could come to this conclusion. I so desperately wanted to believe that it was all fake, but couldn't do it in a logical fashion. Maybe you can, but I will forever be a true believer in Fatima.
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