Galesburg, Champaign, Bloomington are stops Sept. 16-19 on tour of Fatima statue

Patrick Sabat, the principal custodian of the International Pilgrim Virgin Statue of Fatima, has been traveling with the statue since 2003.

The International Pilgrim Virgin Statue of Fatima, on a two-year “Centennial U.S. Tour for Peace” to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the apparitions of Mary in the Portugal village, will be hosted in Galesburg, Champaign and Bloomington from Sept. 16-19.

The statue was sculpted in 1947 by Jose Thedim on instructions from Sister Lucia, who 30 years earlier was the oldest of three shepherd children to witness repeated apparitions of the Blessed Virgin. The statue was blessed by the bishop of Fatima and commissioned to carry the blessings and message of Fatima throughout the world and encourage devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. It was blessed by Pope Pius XII in 1952.

In Galesburg, the statue will arrive at Corpus Christi Church, 273 S. Prairie St., at 6 p.m.  A talk will be given by the statue’s custodian, Patrick Sabat, followed by the rosary. Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament and adoration will continue until Benediction at 9 p.m. The church will be locked at 10 p.m., and reopen for adoration from 10 a.m. until a closing ceremony at 11:50.

In Champaign, the statue will be present at St. John’s Catholic Chapel at the University of Illinois for various activities beginning with adoration and confessions from 4 to 5 p.m. on Saturday.  The 5 p.m. Mass will feature a procession with the statue. Father Chase Hilgenbrinck will be homilist. Following Mass will be enrollment in the Brown Scapular of Our Lady.

The statue will remain at St. John’s Catholic Chapel on Sunday morning, with adoration and confessions from 9 to 10 a.m., followed by recitation of the rosary. Mass is at 10:30 a.m., followed by a talk by Patrick Sabat, the principal custodian of the International Pilgrim Virgin Statue.

On Sunday evening the statue arrives at Holy Trinity Church in Bloomington, where eucharistic adoration is planned from 7 p.m. until after the 8 a.m. Mass on Monday. The statue will then be transported to Corpus Christi Catholic School, 1909 E. Lincoln St., where it will remain until noon.

The statue will visit more than 100 dioceses in 50 states from March 2016 until December 2017. Charles Carr, who is coordinating the tour in the Diocese of Peoria, is making available handouts of Venerable Archbishop Fulton Sheen’s “Mary, the Woman I Love” at the Galesburg, Champaign and Bloomington stops.

More information on the tour is available at


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