Church groups, families and individuals , pilgrims from around the world and the Pope Francis have made their way to the town of Fátima, about 90 miles (50km) north of Lisbon, Friday. In a video message on the eve of his departure, Francis urged all faithful to join him, physically or spiritually, in Fátima.
“With all of us forming one heart and soul, I will then entrust you to Our Lady, asking her to whisper to each one of you: ’My Immaculate Heart will be your refuge and the path that leads you to God.’” Brother and sister Francisco and Jacinta Marto from Fatima , who had the vision of the Virgin Mary on 13 May 1917 ,will be sanctified by Pope Francis on Saturday. Their cousin, Lucia dos Santos, who became the main raconteur of their tale, is on track for beatification, the first step toward becoming a saint. 600 thousand to 1 million pilgrims from all around the world were expected to take part in the centenary celebrations. “A pilgrim of hope and peace,” is how the Pope described himself ahead of his departure to Fatima. A press center was created in Fatima for this great spiritual event. The Portuguese government has given employees permission to miss work in order to attend the celebrations. The Mass of canonisation is scheduled for Saturday.