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Our Lady of Fatima

For Teachers







Provocation and Context: Hope in hard times


On the 13th of October 1917, during the First World War, thousands of people gathered in a field near the small Portuguese village of Fatima, to witness a miracle. The miracle had been foretold by three small children who had been returning to the same field on the 13th day of each month since the month of May, when they first shared their stories of an encounter with a heavenly lady who revealed herself to them as Mary the mother of Jesus.

In the months and years since that event, the reports of the miracle and of the appearances of Our Lady in Fatima spread throughout the world. The story of Fatima has played an important role for many Catholics throughout the twentieth century including Pope Paul VI, John Paul II, Benedict XVI and Pope Francis who will travel to Portugal in May to celebrate the centenary of Fatima.

This Fatima Resource Kit has been made available to support teachers and students to encounter the great events and themes of the twentieth century and to encounter important aspects of our catholic heritage and tradition. 

Further reading: article from the Auxilary Bishop of Melbourne, Bishop Peter J Elliott, 'Celebrating the centenary of Fatima'







The draft Religious Education Curriculum Framework describes learning and teaching in Religious Education for Catholic primary and secondary schools in the Archdiocese of Melbourne. The following draft material is offered as an approach that you may find useful.


Pedagogy of Encounter

The Pedagogy of Encounter diagram (see below) illustrates one way in which you, as teachers, may design learning that invites dialogue, deep thinking and engagement with the Catholic story. The diagram offers key questions in five areas that engage the voice of the learner in deep dialogue with the Catholic Tradition: 

  • What do I think and sense?
  • What do others think and why?
  • What does the Church teach and why?
  • How am I called into deeper relationship with others and God?
  • What do I think now and why?

In this way, it assists you, as teachers, in:

Providing a systematic and sustained engagement with Catholic beliefs and teachings… engaging students with Catholic beliefs and values without imposing these beliefs on the students… creating spaces where the students feel free to share their own understandings and viewpoints, even as they engage with the Catholic story (Sharkey 2015, p. 29).


Discussion questions

What is important to pay attention to in the student and in myself as learners? What do I intend for my students? How do life, creativity and spirituality find a place in the curriculum?

How might I recognise encounter? How might I facilitate encounter?


Further Resources

Explore To Know Worship and Love Book 9: Chapter 11 Mary: Mother of God and the Church







To use the Archbishop's Office for Evangelisation's resource 'Stations of Mary' in section four of our resource, download and complete this form to book the banners that accompany the booklet.




The following document is called a “Prayer of Consecration”. It captures many of the themes and concerns of the world during the twentieth century and in the years during and after the Apparitions of Our Lady of Fatima. This prayer may be used as an additional or alternative provocation for senior students exploring the story of Our Lady of Fatima. Questions that might be worth asking are,

  • What was going on in the world when this prayer was written?
  • If you had to write this prayer of consecration today, what would you pray about?