The Miracle of Our Lady Fatima
Based on a true story, three children experience a heavenly lady several times and draw large crowds while an agnostic, priests, and socialist officials express their doubts.
In May 1917 Portuguese churches have been re-opened after seven years. Hugo da Silva (Gilbert Roland) urges drinking Antonio Abobora dos Santos (Jay Novello) to sell his land, but he says no. Hugo steals apples and gives them to Lucia Abobora dos Santos (Susan Whitney), Jacinto Marto (Sherry Jackson), and Francisco Marto (Sammy Ogg).
On a hill Lucia, Jacinto, and Francisco shout, “Hail Mary!” and hear thunder. In a cloud they see a lady who speaks to them of God. She asks them to come every month for six months and disappears. Jacinto tells Hugo they saw a lady from heaven, and he asks them to keep it secret. Jacinto tells others, and Maria Rosa Abobora dos Santos (Angela Clarke) slaps Lucia for not denying it. Maria and Antonio tell the priest Ferreira (Richard Hale).
A month later Maria won’t let Lucia go to the cova on St. Anthony’s Feast Day. The Council Administrator Artur dos Santos (Frank Silvera) asks Ferreira and the crowd where the children are. Hugo turns in a girl who hates Lucia and then takes Lucia to the cova. Others are there. The lady appears and says she will take Jacinto and Francisco to heaven sooner than Lucia. Hugo asks what she said, and then he asks Antonio to charge a fee next time. Hugo is arrested for obstructing the investigation.
Ferreira suspects the vision may be evil and tells them not to go there again. Lucia tells her mother that she can’t sleep. The Government closes the church. Ferreira tells the Administrator he is giving the story credence. Ferreira tells people to stay away so that his church can open. Antonio insists on going with the children.
At dawn Lucia goes to the cova and prays. At home her family looks for her. A crowd gathers, and they wake Lucia. Ferreira tells the crowd to go home. The Administrator has Ferreira arrested and orders soldiers to move people, who overcome them. The lady appears and warns that a worse war may occur and that evil will appear in Russia. She promises the people a sign in October.
The Administrator is reprimanded. He tells the family that Ferreira was released, and the bishop is at his house. The children go in the Administrator’s car and are taken away. Ferreira says the Administrator lied. The Magistrate and the Administrator interrogate the children, threatening to boil them in oil. Jacinto and Francisco are taken away. They are locked up with rough men and are glad to see Hugo. They all pray. The Magistrate has them released. At night people go with them and sing.
In October people gather as Hugo sells rosaries. Bishops tell Lucia that she is responsible for what happens to the crowd and ask her to confess. Lucia says she has not sinned. After a rainy night, the day is clear. Clouds bring rain. Ferreira tells Lucia to leave. The lady says the war will end soon. Lucia asks for the miracle. People look at the sun as it changes, and two people are healed.
A cathedral was built on the place, and on October 13, 1951 a million people gather and pray. Lucia is a nun and tells Hugo that the people’s faith brought them there.
This religious drama is reasonably accurate except that Hugo is a fictional character to provide a humorous contrast to the religiosity. The Freemason government of Portugal was changed to socialist to bring out an anti-Communist theme in the McCarthy era, though Russia is an important element in the Fatima prophecies.