Significance of Sept. 11 Date of Ron Paul Speech and the Russia-Centric Vision of Fatima Center
Rachel Tabachnick printable version print page     Bookmark and Share
Sun Sep 08, 2013 at 11:15:46 PM EST
 photo devilfinalbattle3_zps6670b69d.jpegMedia Matters recently posted an article exploring Russian President Vladimir Putin's new folk-hero status among the political Right. This is described as a product of extreme Obama hatred, but there are other underlying narratives in sectors of American society that portray the former "Evil Empire" as the great hope of the Right, a bastion of family values, and future leader of world peace. contributors have dedicated many recent posts to the upcoming conference titled Fatima: Path to Peace. The event  is hosted by the Fatima Center, an organization that is fixated on a Russia-centric narrative.  The September 11 date of Ron Paul's keynote speech has special significance to the movement and its agenda for "peace."

Most mainstream press coverage has focused solely on the anti-Semitism of the Fatima Center and affiliated schismatics, described by the Southern Poverty Law Center as "the single largest group of hard-core anti-Semites in North America."  The SPLC isolates the Fatima Center, claimed to be the largest international Fatima apostolates, as one of the "Dirty Dozen" of traditionalist Catholic groups preaching anti-Semitic hatred.

But the anti-Semitism is part of a larger story.

The Fatima Center is one of several examples of rightwing fascination with Russia as an emerging world leader and counter to American liberalism on social issues.  Other examples are outside the scope of this article, but following is a summary of the Fatima Crusaders' narrative.  As noted by the SPLC, the Fatima Center and related schismatic groups should not be viewed as representative of all anti-Vatican II Catholic traditionalists.
 photo devilfinalbattle3_zps6670b69d.jpeg

The graphic at right is a scan of the frontispiece of my copy of The Devil's Final Battle, published in 2002 by Father Paul Kramer, one of the Fatima Center leaders and a speaker at the summit this week.  The book, which can be read online, reveals the narrative of the Fatima Crusaders about the claimed "great apostasy" of the church.  The text under the graphic reads,

The Blessed Virgin Mary at Fatima promised peace to all mankind when Her requests are heeded.  It is essential that Her message and requests be made known clearly and completely.  The acts of war and terrorism, such as the attack on the Twin Towers in new York City on September 11, 2001, are the result of the Fatima message being misrepresented and buried.  This book describes the ongoing battle of the devil and his conscious and unconscious followers against the Blessed Virgin Mary and her Fatima message.  Unless and until the Fatima message is widely known and obeyed, more events such as September 11 and much worse - up to and including the prophesied "annihilation of various nations" - will take place as a result of the Blessed Virgin Mary's message being ignored and disobeyed by mankind.  The connection between terrorist attacks, the threat of war and the suppression of the Fatima message is explained further on pages xvii, 213-223, and 263.

The Fatima Center was founded by Father Nicholas Gruner as part of a larger movement dedicated to fulfillment of instructions believed to be given by the Virgin Mary to three Portuguese children in 1917.  The message was in the form of "Three Secrets."  It is the Third Secret of Fatima, kept confidential until announced by the Vatican in 2000, which has been the source of international controversy.  This third secret is described as prophetic information about the conflict between Russian-sourced communism and the Roman Catholic Church and is supposed to include the instructions for the  "Consecration of Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary."

For those unfamiliar, the controversy over the Third Secret of Fatima is of great significance to many.  One of the more extreme examples took place in 1981, when a former Trappist monk hijacked a plane by dousing himself with fuel in the plane's bathroom in an effort to force Pope John Paul II to reveal the Third Secret of Fatima.

The appendix of Kramer's book is dedicated to a timeline of the "coverup" of the secrets of Fatima, the efforts of the Fatima Center to bring about the "Consecration of Russia," and Fr. Gruner's ongoing battle with Catholic hierarchy.  This includes claims of the relationship of the Third Secret to both the assassination attempt against John Paul II and his survival.  

In 2000, the Vatican published the text of the Third Secret. Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, later to be Pope Benedict XVI, provided the accompanying commentary and warned that the Third Secret would probably prove disappointing after the years of speculation. The Fatima Center was not satisfied and continued it's campaign.

In Fr. Kramer's timeline, he claims that the Fatima Center sent out thousands of letters on August 30, 2001 warning of ramifications of failure to heed the Fatima message. photo devilfinalcover_zps552c0c23.jpeg

There will come a day, sooner than you think, when bombs will start exploding even in the "peaceful" parts of the world.

Kramer continues with his timeline.
September 11, 2001 - Terrorist hijack two airliners and crash them into the twin towers...
...The act is definite proof that the Consecration of Russia, which Our Lady promised would bring peace to the world, has not been done.  Yet the anti-Fatima establishment insists that the message of Fatima was gloriously fulfilled with the consecration of the world in 1984 and that the triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary is upon us.

Kramer's September 12, 2001 listing is about the Vatican's response to Fr. Gruner. 

Revealing their bizarre obsession with Father Gruner and his Fatima apostolate, only one day after the worst terrorist attack in world history, Vatican officials cause the Vatican press office to publish a "Declaration" to the world alleging that Father Gruner has been "suspended" from the priesthood, and that no one should attend a Fatima-related peace conference being sponsored by the apostolate in Rome from October 7-13, 2001...

In 2008, the Vatican's Secretary of State, Cardinal Bertone, wrote a book titled The Last Secret of Fatima.  In response, Vatican leadership was accused of lying in a book written by Christopher Ferrara, the founder of the American Catholic Lawyers Association and another one of the speakers at the upcoming Fatima Center conference. (Ferrara also co-authored a 2002 book attacking the Vatican with Thomas Woods, another Catholic traditionalist.  I've written previously about Woods' role in producing the Ron Paul Curriculum for home schoolers with Gary North, a leading Christian Reconstructionist.)

It is believed by the Fatima Crusaders, among others, that the Third Secret of Fatima has not been fully revealed, nor the instructions carried out.  Ferrara and Gruner attended a meeting of the European Union Parliament in October 2012 in support of a declaration calling for Pope Benedict XVI to fulfill the "Consecration of Russia."  They were invited to speak by sponsors of the motion, including Mario Borghezio, an MP in the EU Parliament and a member of the Italian Northern League. Borghezio, who is also scheduled to speak at the Fatima Center conference, was imprisoned in Italy in 2005 for setting fire to pallets of sleeping migrants in a vigilante raid.

The Fatima Crusaders believe the Vatican is lying to them about the full revelation of the Third Secret and about the Consecration of Russia.  They argue that the consecration can not have taken place because it will be followed by world peace - led by a converted Russia as the new world power and the elimination of communism worldwide.  In this case communism applies not only to a government and economic system, but also the liberalism that communism has supposedly birthed around the globe. According to Kramer, the Fatima request requires "that the Pope and all Catholic bishops of the world consecrate Russia, by name, in a solemn public ceremony."

Fatima leaders claim that deception by the Vatican about the Third Secret of Fatima is supposedly the result of infiltration by Judeo-Masonic forces.  Repentance will require a world wide cataclysm or world war, according to some of the Fatima Crusaders. Kramer, on the Fatima Center website, states,

From the evidence we have discussed, this much at least seems clear: The Church will undergo a great apostasy among many of Her members, which is plainly already underway. Then there will be a world war in which much of the world's population will die, the Church will be persecuted as never before and driven underground, and Rome itself may possibly be devastated. This is the scenario that fits perfectly the Third Secret vision, where the Pope is executed and prominent churchmen and lay people have been slaughtered in a half-ruined city.

On another Fatima Center webpage, Kramer states,
Russia will be converted. Her Immaculate Heart will triumph. A vast multitude of Russian Traditionalists will enter the Catholic Church. Russia will be converted and the Church will revert back to Her traditions. There will be peace. But this will take place after the chastisement.

More transcripts and video of Fr. Gruner and Fr. Paul Kramer have been posted at by Bruce Wilson.  See here, here, and here.

Russia has played a major role in apocalyptic narratives, including those of fundamentalist Protestantism.  Since 1917, the Scofield Study Bible served as a training tool for Dispensational end time prophecy that was, and continues to be, Russia-centric. The communism of Bolshevik Russia, and later the Soviet Union, became the vehicle through which the Antichrist would take control of the world. This end time prophecy teaching was often merged with narratives based on The Protocols of the Elders of Zion and other anti-Semitic propaganda from the 1920s to the present.

While the Dispensationalist narrative culminates in the removal or "Rapture" of all born again Christians from the earth to heaven prior to the "Great Tribulation" and reign of the Antichrist, the Fatima Center narrative provides a triumphal outcome in which the Consecration of Russia and the nation's subsequent conversion is to bring about a peaceful Christian kingdom on the natural earth.

Like Protestant apocalyptic narratives, the Fatima Center narrative is fluid and has been merged with, and altered to fit the political changes in Russia. Russia is described as the nation that will provide the "great chastisement" necessary for repentance of Catholics who have fallen into the apostate world religion, but is also the vehicle through which world peace will come. Christopher Ferrara, mentioned previously in context of his challenge to the Vatican, claims it was Russian criminals that supplied Osama bin Laden. Ferrara claims Russia enabled the attacks on the U.S. and therefore it can be concluded that the nation has not yet been consecrated to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.
 photo fatimaspeakergraphic_zps816e8cc3.jpg
The Fatima Crusaders attacks on the Vatican and warnings of destruction are strikingly similar to the anti-Catholic narratives of televangelist John Hagee and other marketers of fundamentalist Protestant end times prophecy.  (Hagee is an independent Charismatic.) In these narratives, the Roman Catholic hierarchy partners with an Illuminati conspiracy and pave the way for the reign of the Antichrist. In Hagee's version, evil on earth is orchestrated by "half-breed Jews" and in the Fatima version by a "Judeo-Masonic" conspiracy. Both are fixated with claims that the Federal Reserve is owned by Rothschilds. One of the speakers at the "Fatima: Path to Peace" conference is G. Edward Griffin, author of one of the most popular, although somewhat sanitized, versions of the Rothschilds' enslavement of humanity through manipulation of the dollar.  

An array of Fatima movement sites claim that various popes and archbishops are part of this Satanic conspiracy, like one webpage announcing that "Rome is no longer Catholic; It is now the apocalyptic Whore of Babylon."  Another common feature is the claim that natural and geo-political events are the results of God's warnings and punishments. photo krameronmasons_zps4a6225dd.jpeg [Graphic at right is page 47 of Kramer's book, with his claims of a communist conspiracy to infiltrate the church dating back to 1930s.]

Liberalism in society - reproductive rights, gay rights, etc. - are credited to the infiltration of communism around the globe, similar to the anti-communist narratives of the John Birch Society that have attributed everything from the Civil Rights Movement to feminism to communist infiltration of America. In these narratives, the United States is now the hotbed of Marxism, liberalism, and Satanic rebellion against God.

Michael Agnew's 2010 McMaster University graduate thesis, titled "Russia Will Be Converted": The Fatima Crusade's Marian Apocalyptic Discourse During and After the Cold War, provides a more detailed explanation of the Fatima Crusaders, founded in 1978 by Fr. Nicholas Gruner and based in Ontario.

Devoted to the serial apparitions of the Virgin Mary at Fatima, Portugal in 1917, the Fatima Crusade developed the call for Russia's conversion made explicit in Mary's revelations at Fatima into the focus for a peripheral yet extremely vocal conservative element of the Catholic Church in North America. This organization vehemently opposed Soviet Communism in the pages of its quarterly magazine during the latter years of the Cold War era.

Fr. Nicholas Gruner's Fatima Crusade, marked by its apocalyptic Marianism and conservative Catholicism, provides a privileged vantage-point from which to examine the role of religiously-informed ideology in fashioning an anti-Communist polemic during the Cold War era in North America. This thesis explores the Fatima Crusade's development of the Fatima messages into an authoritative Marian apocalyptic worldview, its conflicts with the Church hierarchy regarding the interpretation of these messages, and the Crusade's ability to adapt its message to the latest historical developments and social issues following the collapse of the Soviet Union. (Agnew, p. iii)

 photo unitednationsvideo_zps0e27059c.jpg Another common feature of both the Protestant and Catholic narratives that parallel JBS narratives, is the claim that the United Nations is being used by the Antichrist to form a one-world government and a one-world religion.

As Agnew points out in his thesis, the Fatima Crusaders' raison d'etre has been anti-communism as part of a cosmic struggle between good and evil.  In the Fatima Crusader narrative the United Nations is one of the primary villains working on the side of the Antichrist.
 photo grunerinjbsmovie_zps863dcb26.jpg

As described in my previous article on the relationship between Ron Paul, the John Birch Society, and the Fatima Center, in 1998, Gruner was featured in a 30-minute video produced by the John Birch Society titled "The United Nations: A Look Into the Future." The film was a promotion of Rep. Ron Paul's American Sovereign Restoration Act in the U.S. Congress. The JBS film is a conspiracy-laden production on the imminent loss of property, gun rights, and religious liberty to the United Nations. Fr. Gruner warns of the United Nations' role in promoting abortion in a segment claiming that opposition to abortion will be criminalized. [Graphics at right are screen shots from the JBS video.] photo catholicfamilynews_zps370afede.jpg

Another Fatima Center conference speaker featured in the film is Cornelia Ferreira who talks about the coming "one-world religion" of the UN - humanism, atheism, and paganism.  Ferreira is followed by Ron Paul stating, "If the United Nations has their way, there will be curtailment of our right to practice religion."

 photo unitednationspaul_zps7667c24d.jpg Agnew explains that following the collapse of the Soviet Union, the eschatological narrative of the Fatima Center adjusted to the new political reality and by 1991 had begun to focus more on the "culture wars."

Throughout the 1990's and beyond
the Fatima Crusade tapped with greater frequency into the right-wing public discourse concerning such topics as abortion, homosexuality, sex education, and the erosion of the nuclear family. In concert with these relatively new, primarily domestic moral threats, new international institutional threats would also enter the ring allied with Communism and indeed springing from it, including the UN and the supposed construction of a New World Order, both seen as additional fulfillments of apocalyptic prophecy. (Agnew, p. 96)

Fr. Gruner has described the priests in clerical sex abuse scandals as homosexuals, not pedophiles, and has claimed that HIV/AIDS is God's punishment.

AIDS as being a friendly reminder from our creator that we are not to abuse the powers of procreation that he has given us, we are to use them according to his laws. Apparently (not only apparently, but it is true that) there are many people who are not living according to God's laws, who are committing these sexual sins, sins of homosexuality for example.  That kind of sin is what caused fire to rain down from heaven. (Agnew, p. 102)

According to the Fatima Crusader narrative, God will begin destroying nations if the mandate to consecrate Russia is not fulfilled.  September 11, 2001 is considered a warning for the United States to repent of its Marxism and "New World Order" attacks on the family.

As previously noted, September 11 holds special significance for its forewarning of impending annihilation if the Virgin Mary's mandates given at Fatima are not fulfilled. This is described in the pages of the Fatima Crusader and quoted by Agnew.

Ground Zero also gives us a foretaste of hell. The raging fires, the intense heat, the loss of thousands of lives with no warning, and perhaps for some, little time to adequately prepare themselves to meet God ... God
does not want even one of His children to go to Hell. It  is out of His love and compassion for us, that He allows this foretaste of Hell to happen, so that upon seeing and experiencing the Hell on earth, we will take heed and repent in time to avoid the Hell of eternity ... Ground Zero is only the beginning. Our Lady warned us of annihilation of entire nations if we do obey her Fatima requests. (Agnew, p. 115)
Fatima Center's Path to Peace

This is the background behind the peace conference to be held by the Fatima Center this week and keynoted by Ron Paul on September 11.  Paul has a long history as the link between a diverse array of groups that promote anti-Semitic conspiracies as well as a deep hatred of U.S. government.  As we face the challenges of the next few weeks on the issues of Syria and conflict in the Middle East, we should be aware that some of the voices calling for peace are not partners looking for a less militaristic America, or a plan to lead the world toward a more progressive future.  Some of the voices for "peace" are coming from people who would take us back to the Middle Ages.

Great article, Rachel. There is a body of literature on how modern social movements come together. The old model of organizational linkages is supplemented by conceptualizing that ideas provide organizational structure and ideas provide bridges between social movements. Actual personnel linkages like interlocking board of directors is no longer necessary. In this conceptualization of Netwar or Fourth Generation Warfare or Cosmic Warfare, ideas link social movements. Your work and those of others at Talk to Action (but see also key reporting at RightWingWatch), the broad right-wing has an overarching narrative that has differences in naming who is the villain, but these differences are minor. The broad Christian Right accepts the narrative that the United Nations in cahoots with liberals (variously described as secular humanists, cultural Marxists, liberals, socialists, communists, fascists) are conspiring to disarm the American people, persecute Christians, rob them of their property, enslave them, and exterminate them. Larry Pratt's Gun Owners of America and the National Rifle Association promote this. Ron Paul has a long history of promoting this. The Constitution Party promotes this. The John Birch Society promotes this. We are witnessing a much more integrated, broad right-wing networked at the level of ideas sufficiently abstract to allow doctrinal and theological differences, but concrete enough to link them together in concrete actions. Keep up the excellent work.

by James Estrada Scaminaci on Mon Sep 09, 2013 at 04:29:38 PM EST

The biggest mistake the U.S. could make would be to become isolationist leaving the U.N. Actually the opposite needs to transpire. The U.S. should embrace, vehicle, inspire, and participate with internationalism via the U.N., ICC and other countries. That would not only spread democracy but set an example. force required. Fundamentalism is dangerous and starts a chain reaction. Ron Paul's ideas wouldn't hold even a small commune together under one rock in one state or town in the U.S. let alone resolve any peace issue internationally. Fundamentalist thinking divides...end of story! It's the inability to comprehend and/or conceive ideas which are complex, diverse, eclectic and which are the very core of what is needed to resolve international tensions. It will take multiple philosophies and schools of thought working together. There is no simple-minded, narrow-minded, black and white thinking which will resolve these issues...period! The fundamentalists enjoy the drama and emotional responses of their politically and/or religiously driven pigeonholing of social behaviors and general beliefs from a wide array of people, backgrounds and circumstances. This is why their mentalities ironically correspond with Al Qaeda's fundamental thinking. And, why they use their beliefs in the name of God as justified punishment. They forget that they are NOT God. That role has already been filled. Unfortunately, their rote mindset is to protect their "God ordained" beliefs and "nationalistic" lifestyles and controls by pointing the scapegoat finger at other "threatening" sources as being the so ever overused red scare tactic -"communistic red threat." I don't see the justified parallels bridging secession, anti-government rants, and pro-anarchy movements to be implemented because the church and state haven't joined together, Christian prayer is no longer the status quo, gays/lesbians have equal rights as human beings, and/or Jesus has been separated from the neutral Christmas holiday which is enjoyed by non-Christians as well. In the U.S., how many Christians have lost a job, lost their children, lost their lives, went without food, lost their homes, ended up homeless because they practiced Christianity? You can't say that others experiencing these maladies deserved it because of their sins because God decides sin and punishment- Christians should know this better than anyone. It is true that Christianity is derived from Judaism, but the writings are not all the same nor all of the prophecies and directives. Our part, as Christians and as Jewish, is to simply individually and directly do what God tells us within the capacity of OUR own awareness of our OWN disobedience. We are not God. We are not universal judges. For example, If God tells you to help your homosexual neighbor because he is starving. Then, you do it. God will judge and determine any applicable sins in his homosexuality. God gave no directives to make decisions to destroy or spread gossip about evasive future events which is obviously impossible for any one person to accurately relay to the world. And, maybe it was intended to be that way in all of God's infinite wisdom as people would try to "help" God with his special plans. He has the bigger picture. We don't. And, genuine peace could never be something that God would frown upon especially if our hearts and motives are genuinely unselfish, not fundamental, mature, and including everyone's wellbeing- not just our own. It is possible for the U.S. to remain a nation in a sea of other nations with international interdependence AND individuality. It is possible for a Christian to remain a Christian in a sea of other religions and beliefs with national interdependence AND individuality. Now, that's peace.

by anonymouspost on Sun Sep 15, 2013 at 09:54:59 PM EST

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