FIRST SATURDAY DEVOTION
The First Saturday Devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary was first mentioned by Our Lady of Fatima on July 13, 1917. After showing the three children a vision of hell she said,
"You have seen hell where the souls of poor sinners go. To save them, God wishes to establish in the world devotion to my Immaculate Heart. If what I say to you is done, many souls will be saved and there will be peace... I shall come to ask for... the Communion of reparation on the first Saturdays..."
Eight years later, on December 10, 1925, Mary and the Child Jesus appeared to Lucia, the sole surviving Fatima visionary, at a convent in Pontevedra, Spain. Our Lady rested her hand on Lucia's shoulder, revealing a heart encircled by thorns.
The Child Jesus said:
"Have compassion on the heart of your most holy Mother, covered with thorns with which ungrateful men pierce it at every moment, and there is no one to make an act of reparation..."
Our Lady spoke next, saying:
"Look, my daughter, at my heart, surrounded with thorns with which ungrateful men pierce it at every moment by their blasphemies and ingratitude. You at least try to console me and say that I promise to assist at the hour of death, with the graces necessary for salvation, all those who, on the first Saturday of five consecutive months, shall confess, receive Holy Communion, recite five decades of the Rosary, and keep me company for fifteen minutes while meditating on fifteen mysteries of the Rosary, with the intention of making reparation to me."
Why Five Saturdays?
Christians have always honored the Blessed Virgin on Saturday because of her constant faith in Jesus on that first Holy Saturday before the Resurrection.
Five first Saturdays of reparation were requested to atone for the five ways in which people offend the Immaculate Heart of Mary:
1. attacks upon Mary's Immaculate Conception
2. attacks against her Perpetual Virginity
3. attacks upon her Divine Maternity and the refusal to accept her as the Mother of all mankind
4. for those who try to publicly implant in children's hearts indifference, comtempt and even hatred of this Immaculate Mother
5. for those who insult her directly in her sacred images.
The devotion involves the following practices on five consecutive first Saturdays with the specific intention of making reparation for the offenses (above) against the Blessed Virgin.
1. Go to Confession (within 8 days before or after the first Saturday)
2. Receive Holy Communion
3. Recite five decades of the Rosary*
4. "Keep me company for fifteen minutes while meditating on fifteen mysteries of the Rosary" This is separate from the Rosary itself and preferably done in the presence of the Lord in the Tabernacle or at Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament where available. Many also say the Litany of Loretto - the Litany of the Blessed Virgin Mary, or the Little Office of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
Following are the Promises Christ and His Blessed Mother made to those who observe the Five First Saturday Devotion: