A Call to Conversion

When I think of a call to conversion, the image of Blessed Virgin Mary standing in front of the children of Fatima is the first thing I think of for two reasons.

#1 She sends an urgent message of praying for peace and to change hearts through repentance, reparation, and conversion.

#2 She uses the purest of hearts to bring about the change, the children!

The adults of the time were turning a blind eye to the war raging around them. Not just the physical war, but also the metaphorical war that was raging in their own hearts.

Because of this, I wonder if our Lady knew the only way to get to the adults was through the faith of the children.

Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.

Matthew 18:3-5

God created children to have a sense of wonder, an unshakable belief, and a desire for truth, goodness and justice, even if things don’t always make sense. Their innocence is beautiful and captivating, and we want more of what they have. This is why they are the perfect vessel to bring about change and conversion.

This makes me think of my family's own conversion story. I grew up in a small town with a close-knit family, who identified our religious affiliation as protestant, however we didn’t talk much about God or Jesus and I never really heard anything about Mary.

Going to church was reserved for special occasions, so when I came home from elementary school and emphatically told my mom I wanted to know Jesus, she was shocked and a little embarrassed, and confessed that she didn’t know exactly how to answer me. What she did know, from her formative years of ccd, was that she could find that answer in the church she used to call home, the Catholic Church. Our formation started off slowly, we were taught mostly at home by our mom, but as my mom’s transformation and conversion began to blossom, we started to get involved in all sorts of things at church and began deepening our own faith and understanding.

My Dad wasn’t ready for any sort of conversion, this came much later, but my mom’s devotion to our Lord and to the Blessed Mary became ingrained in my heart. Although I did stray from the church for quite some time, the teachings that were formed in my youth by my mom, were like a tether pulling me back to the truth of Jesus and back to the Catholic Church and all her richness and beauty in 2001.

Train up a child in the ways of the Lord, and even when they are old they will not turn from it.

Proverbs 22:6

Although I don’t remember being the instrument that God used to bring my mom back to the church, I am so grateful that he used me, a child, to be the light that pointed my mom to the truth, the way and the life. Because of her yes to my request, and through her example,we all made our way back to the arms of Jesus.

Because of my experience and the example of Fatima, I pay special attention to what our younger brothers and sisters have to say about faith. I believe sometimes their understanding and wisdom reaches far beyond their age and they grasp what St. Paul wrote in Hebrews 11:1 very easily, regarding what faith is: “confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see”.

Kids don’t need to see things to know they are real, they don’t overthink like we do. Once I told my spiritual director that I needed some strong prayers for a situation I was having and asked her who I should ask to stand with me in prayer during this difficult time. She replied “any child 10 and under.” I was confused and wondered if I understood her correctly, she just

smiled and said, “Kids don’t doubt, they just believe with willing spirits, and blind trust in the unfolding!”

I know the journey of conversion is not always easy. It demands courage and perseverance as we confront the parts of ourselves that we would rather ignore. It requires patience and grace and it necessitates faith and trust when the path ahead seems uncertain. But I also know… if we just focus more to have child-like faith with open hearts and willing spirits, we can embrace the journey of conversion, and discover the truest, most beautiful version of ourselves.


Mandi-bre Watson is a motivational speaker, ​writer, and passionate follower of Jesus. ​Through her writing and speaking, she tries to ​be a beacon of hope as she points people to ​the Savior.  She is a devoted wife and  mother ​to 4 amazing children. Additionally, she owns ​a small marketing company and is the owner ​of an online boutique, Veiled in Love, where ​she sells her handmade veils. She is a ​certified Spiritual Companion through Oblate ​School of Theology and an active member of ​her parish in San Antonio, Texas. To learn more about ​Mandi-bre, visit www.mbwatson.com.


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