Join the Sisters on Saturday May 2 for this powerful devotion to Our Lady live streamed on YouTube.
On Saturday, April 4, in Atlantic City, New Jersey, the Franciscan Sisters of the Renewal marked a historic first.
They forged ahead into the digital world, despite uncertainties, to connect with the community and bring the First Saturday Devotion via live stream.
Founded in 1988 as a parallel community to the Franciscan Friars of the Renewal, the Sisters are active in a variety of apostolates. “Our primary work in the city is among the poor, but it’s a great joy for us to be involved in different works of evangelization and leading people in prayer, and we’re excited about this first attempt at live streaming (the First Saturday Devotion) … what feels like a historic moment,” said Sr. Ann Kateri, CFR, in her opening remarks for the streaming of the First Saturday Devotion.
The late Fr. Andrew Apostoli, the founder of the Sisters’ community, considered the devotion crucial to bringing peace to the world. He explained, “The lack of the First Saturday Devotion is the missing piece. Our Lady and Jesus specifically asked for this, and so few people are doing it. We need to do our part and keep the first Saturday of the month in honor of Our Lady.”
The devotion is based on the apparition of Our Lady of Fatima to Sister Lucia dos Santos in 1925. “See, my daughter, my Heart encircled by thorns, with which ungrateful men pierce it at every moment by their blasphemies and ingratitude. Do you, at least, strive to console me. Tell them that I promise to assist at the hour of death with the graces necessary for salvation all those who, in order to make reparation to me, on the First Saturday of five successive months, go to Confession, receive Holy Communion, say five decades of the Rosary, and keep me company for a quarter of an hour, meditating on the … mysteries of the Rosary, with the intention of making reparation to me.”
The Sisters, fortunately, were able to quickly organize and even ‘borrow’ (with permission) an internet connection from an adjacent building. “This day came together very last minute,” stated Sr. Ann Kateri. “It’s really a miracle that it came together the way it did. We’re so grateful that we’re able to gather within this way to pray together and to beg Our Blessed Mother’s powerful intercession for the world in this most difficult time.”
While some in the Catholic Church may have been slow to embrace the digital frontier in the past, it’s vigorously moving forward now and seeing unprecedented results. This outreach will send the Gospel message beyond the doors of the church directly into the lives of untold millions as never before.
The next First Saturday Devotion is on May 2, 2020, at 10:00 a.m. EDT, and can be viewed
To learn more about the Community of the Franciscan Sisters of the Renewal, you can visit their website.