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Each week Thomas and I give you a behind the scenes look into the people places and cultures that inspire our brand and that we are in awe of.
As a barware, lighting and home accessories design company, we at Thomas Fuchs Creative specialize in handmade goods travel is a key part of why we love our jobs so much as we get to work with artisans from all over the world while eating our way throughs the countries we visit for work and pleasure.
This week we continue our European summer jaunt coming to an end in Portugal. We all carry stories within our psyches that our parents have recounted to us that make up the DNA of who we are, how we think and perhaps even affects our dreams and desires. Both Thomas and I are very grounded people, despite my metaphysicality I am equally pragmatic.
These fables are passed down from generation to generation in a practice of old story telling of times past. This is the fabric that connects us each to our individual family history and gives us a sense of self.
My Mother had forever recounted to me that my grandparents (her parents) had heard the famous fable of Fatima. My grandparents traveled from Beirut to Fatima in Portugal on a pilgrimage to "make a wish". The wish was that if their daughter (my mother) was able to have a child that "child (me)" would return to thank Fatima and the wish would come full circle.
My Mother mentioned that since we were en-route to Portugal to celebrate our dear friends Andrea and Robert's Wedding and Birthday I must make it a priority to make the trip back to Fatima and fulfill the wish made by my grandparents.
From the moment we landed I asked every cab driver how much it would cost to get to Fatima. I asked the Brown's Central Hotel concierge what is the most efficient way to make the 1.5 hours trip. Train, bus, car all seemed too intense to be surrounded by mobs of people in a time such as this having just coming out of the Covid epoch.
And just like that a miracle happened, yet once again, I was recounting to our friends Jessica and Henrik, who had joined us on our trip, while in a taxi ride about the pilgrimage I needed to make. The Taxi driver over heard me and said his Grandfather had always told him about the miracle he saw with his own eyes. The Taxi Driver offered to take me to fulfill the wish at half the cost of any other transportation.
The most significant underlying emotion is that not only am I returning to fulfill the wish, I return in great health with a husband and a company and a full life filled with friends, family surrounded by love and life.
Why does Fátima, a city in Santarém get over 8 million religious visitors every year? Home to the Sanctuary of Fátima, the city is the site of a world-renowned Catholic miracle.
The story of the Our Lady of Fátima miracle begins on May 13, 1917. Three peasant children, Francisco, Jacinta, and Lucia were tending to their family’s sheep. The children under 10 years old were blessed with the presence of the Virgin Mary, Mother of Jesus. In Portugal, she is also known as Fátima. The children saw this beautiful woman, dressed in white and standing above a bush. The Virgin Mary told the children that world peace would occur if they spread the godly message of prayer.
She visited the young children on the 13th of every month for the next six months.
The first apparition on May 13, 1917
The second apparition on June 13, 1917
The third apparition on July 13, 1917
The fourth apparition on August 19, 1917
The fifth apparition on September 13, 1917
The Final Apparition: The Miracle of the Sun
The sixth and final miracle, the Miracle of the Sun, occurred on the 13th of October, 1917. This was essentially in response to the prophecy made by the three children. The children told the people in the village to come out and witness it, even the skeptics. There are reports of over 70,000 people being in attendance.
According to various witness accounts, the rainy sky cleared up, and the ground that was wet from the rain became dry. The sun appeared “dancing around” and “zig-zagging” in the sky within broken clouds, giving it the name of the Miracle of the Sun. Some say that the dancing sun even appeared to fly closer to the earth and then jump back into its place quickly. Others also mentioned multicolored light and radiant colors all over the sky. They said the Miracle of the Sun lasted for at least 10 minutes. The children were then finally believed by the people of Fátima.
Catholic Response to the Miracle of the Sun
There was an investigation conducted by the local bishop in November to review these reports and analyze whether they were congruent with Catholic theology. The Miracle of the Sun was declared “worthy of belief” and of a supernatural character by Bishop Jose da Silva in 1930.
Bless Your Pets
Pope Pius XII also approved the miracle in 1940. Interestingly, the Pope also declared that he witnessed the same miracle in 1950. On October 30, 1950, the Pope was walking through the Vatican gardens where he witnessed the Miracle of the Sun near the statue of Our Lady of Lourdes. He saw the same miracle again on October 31, November 1, and November 8.
Bless Your Properties
In 2017, Pope Francis went on to officially recognize the Miracle of the Sun and even canonized two of the children, Francisco Marto and Jacinta Marto, over 100 years after their death. This means that Pope Francis made the children officially saints! Lucia, the cousin of Jacinta and Francisco Marto passed away in 2005 and is being considered for possible beatification. This is the step right before sainthood and essentially signifies that she is blessed in heaven. However, this process could only legally start in 2010, at least five years after her death, and is not yet finished. Pope Francis has visited the shrine of Our Lady of Fatima multiple times.
Both Thomas and I celebrate any family history you have heard passed down from your families to you. Today is Sunday and though we live in a time where our beautiful earth is at peril as the Sun beats down hard, politics plays with peoples lives while egos are at war, all we are left with is control of our own lives and stories.
Weather you believe, as our driver said in the "hocus pocus" his grandfather told him he witnessed at Fatima, weather you are a Hindu, Buddhist, Christian, Jew or Muslim hold on to your belief in something as it is the exact hocus pocus the taxi driver mentioned which he didn't realize made him offer to help fulfill my wish.
Make your story a great one.
I wish you a happy Sunday.
Beautifully written! Thank you so much for sharing your fabulous story! Cannot wait to see y’all in October 😘