Liturgical Season 3/24/03 World News
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Mary Page News items give insight into our interest areas, our outreach, and the many ways people honor Our Lady. We welcome your input and your comments.

Liturgical Season

To celebrate the Lenten Feast in the company of Mary See:

Let us not forget the Feast of St. Joseph 

In preparation of March 25, use the following:

Mary Page offers a variety of resources inviting study, reflection and meditation.  We also list important Marian dates for each month of the year.  Please see Marian Commemoration Days for the month of March.

Rosary Markings

Rosary Markings is an answer to John Paul II's proclamation of "The Year of the Rosary" (2002-2003).  Rosary Markings will explore various facets of the rosary all through this anniversary year.  It will be updated frequently.  

See our recent addition from March 24.  Previous Reflections are listed on our Rosary Index.

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New Resources

We have expanded The Hail Mary in Various Languages and added Touching Him to Get Well to our Resources index.  We have also posted John Paul II's Marian Prayer for the upcoming World Day of Prayer for Vocations to our Prayers menu.

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  News from the Marian Library

Current Exhibit

Native American Madonnas by Father Guiliani will be on display in the Marian Library Gallery from March 10 to May 5, 2003.  The Gallery is open from 8:30 am - 4:30 pm weekdays.  For more information, or to arrange for viewing at another time, call (937) 229-4214.

To see a virtual exhibit of this year's displays click into Current Exhibit.

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Major Exhibit Coming Next Year

A rare collection of art from the Vatican will be coming to UD during its short tour.  "The Mother of God: Art Celebrates Mary" will arrive in Sept. 2003 for a two month stay in the Roesch Library first-floor gallery and seventh-floor Marian Library Gallery.  The multicultural exhibition includes pieces dating from the fourth century to the 20th century.

The works include a variety of mediums such as oil on canvas and copper; tempera; gold on panel-carved sections of sarcophagi in marble; and statuary in wood, bronze, ivory, lead and soapstone.  The artists are from several different ethnic backgrounds.  Cultures of Africa, China, Korea, Greece, Central Europe, Russia, Brazil, and the Solomon Islands are represented.  The 38-piece collection is housed in the Vatican Museums, although many of the pieces are in areas only accessible to scholars for study.

Aside from an extended stay at the John Paul II cultural center in Washington, D.C., the exhibit has rarely been seen by the public.  The cost of transporting, insuring, and securing the art will be provided through private donations.

The works are put into six categories: Eve and Mary, The Incarnation, The Theotokos (Mother of God), Images of Prayer, Mary in Cultures Around the World, and Walking with Mary in the Third Millennium.  The sections are introduced by writings from Pope John Paul II.

The exhibition puts emphasis on the mission of the Marian Library/International Marian Research Institute, which is serving as the host.  It will be the second exhibit in a biennial series of international art here at UD.

Source: "Rare Vatican art to make its way to campus" by Meghan Roberts, published on p. 7 in Flyer News for September 27, 2002.

For more information see also the article by Pamela Gregg in the August 22 issue of U.D.'s Campus Report.

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International Marian Research Institute Course Schedule

The schedule of IMRI courses for Spring 2003 - Fall 2003 is now available for view.  Courses for the Spring 2003 term commenced on March 3.

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Personal thoughts and reflections about Mary 
from our readers 

We've added a section to our Research and Publications section showing selected personal comments from our readers about the Virgin Mary.  Click here to see comments received within the past month.  From this page, feel free to submit your own personal thoughts on Mary.  

We also encourage our readers to submit their opinions on various styles of Marian Art through an on-line art survey.

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Marian Events

Dear Friends of the Arch of Triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary and Int'l Shrine of the Holy Innocents,

Come if you can, and join the thousands who are expected for the 3003 Lift Jesus Higher Rally in Toronto on Saturday, March 29 -- featuring the dynamic and renowned Catholic evangelists, RALPH MARTIN, SR. ANNE SHIELDS, and SR. BRIEGE MCKENNA, as well as Peter Herbeck, and Fr. John Vandenakker. For full information, go to http://lift-jesus-higher-rally.org or call (416) 227-2560.

If you come, it would give me the greatest pleasure to make your acquaintance--please stop by our exhibition table and say hello!

Can't make it to Toronto? Come instead the same weekend to Buffalo (the Erie County Fair Grounds in Hamburg, NY). On Friday evening, March 28, I will be at our exhibition table for "HEAVEN AND HELL - A Lenten Conference" sponsored by Buffalo's Catholic Radio Station, WLOF-FM and featuring FR. JOHN CORAPI and SCOTT HAHN, with music by JIM COWAN.

Greeting you at our table on Saturday March 29 will be Steve & Marion Bradley, and Bob Dombrowski. For full information, go to http://www.wlof.net or call (716) 839-6117.

Click this link for a list of all of the current Marian Events by geographical position.

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Prayer Corner Requests

You are invited to help us pray for our Prayer Corner intentions.  Please take a look!  This site has been updated and enhanced and now allows users to directly submit prayer requests or to volunteer as a prayer partner for these intentions!

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News from Around the World

The fringe of his garment

62 years ago, Archbishop José Martinez of Mexico City gave Archbishop John Cantwell of Los Angeles a token of his appreciation – a small piece of Juan Diego’s tilma, the cloak upon which the image of Our Lady of Guadalupe miraculously appeared in 1531.

This year, in preparation for the first celebrated feast day of newly canonized St. Juan Diego next December 9, the small relic will go on pilgrimage to a number of cathedrals and basilicas across the United States.

The Apostolate for Holy Relics (AHR), a nonprofit group dedicated to the preservation and veneration of sacred objects, has received permission to take the tilma piece on tour from Cardinal Roger M. Mahony of Los Angeles.

"We pray that this pilgrimage, The Tilma of Tepeyac Tour, will rekindle the faith of hundreds of thousands of American Catholics and will provide a springboard for further Marian devotion in this Year of the Rosary," said an AHR statement announcing the tour.

Following the tour, the tilma relic will be permanently enshrined in the new Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels in Los Angeles.

Dioceses interesting in hosting the pilgrimage may contact Thomas Searafin at Tom@apostolateforHolyRelics.com or write to AHR, P.O. Box 20131, Los Angeles, CA 90021.

(From: Our Sunday Visitor, March 23, 2003)

From Zenit

Bombs Explode Near Chaldean Patriarchate
Auxiliary Bishop Emmanuel Karim Delly Is Unharmed

VATICAN CITY, MARCH 23, 2003 (Zenit.org)

Bombs damage the Chaldean Patriarchate in Baghdad, but auxiliary bishop Emmanuel Karim Delly was not wounded by the explosions.

On Saturday, news agencies said that the 75-year old prelate, who has been bishop since 1962, had been wounded by bombs that fell near his residence in the Patriarchate of Babylon of the Chaldeans.

"Glass from the windows fell on top of me. But nothing happened to me. The Virgin protected me. I am well," the bishop told the Italian Catholic television channel "Sat2000" on Saturday afternoon.

Monsignor Shlemon Warduni, also an auxiliary bishop of the Chaldean Patriarchate, explained in turn: "There was a bombing next to our Patriarchate. All the windowpanes broke and this is the reason that the rumor spread that Bishop Delly had been wounded. However, as he himself has said, he is well."

Bishop Delly made an appeal to "stop the war, to stop this catastrophe, in which children, young people, elderly people, women, men are lost. Everything is lost with war; much is gained with peace."

"In particular, we ask all families to pray the Rosary, as Pope John Paul II has requested," the bishop concluded.

Beatification Set for 5, Including an Evangelizer of the Poor
María Dolores Rodríguez Sopeña Among Them

MADRID, Spain, MARCH 19, 2003 (Zenit.org)

John Paul II will beatify María Dolores Rodríguez Sopeña, evangelizer of the neediest, and four others this Sunday, according to the Office for the Liturgical Celebrations of the Supreme Pontiff.

María Dolores was born in Velez Rubio, Spain, on Dec. 30, 1848, and died in Madrid on Jan. 10, 1918.

She grew up in various locations following the transfers of her father, a magistrate. She was drawn increasingly to works of charity, both spiritual and material.

In 1872 her family moved to Puerto Rico, where María Dolores founded the Association of the Sodality of the Virgin Mary and schools for the disadvantaged. She taught reading and writing in these schools, as well as catechism. Her mother died in Cuba, and her father applied for retirement.

The family returned to Madrid in 1877, where she organized her life on three fronts: her home and the care of her father; her apostolic work; and her spiritual life. Her father died in 1883, and once again she began to struggle with her vocation.

After an experience in a contemplative order she left the convent and continued her work of caring for the sick and prisoners and alleviating the spiritual and material poverty of ordinary people. She was devoted to Our Lady of Sorrows, and had an intense experience of God as Father of all and therefore desired to "make of all, one family in Christ Jesus."

In 1892, at the suggestion of the bishop of Madrid, María Dolores founded the Association of Apostolic Laymen, now known as the Sopeña Lay Movement. In 1914 she founded a community in Rome and in 1917 opened their first house in the Americas. The following year, she died in Madrid.

The Sopeña family embraces the three institutions founded by María Dolores: the Sopeña Catechetical Institute, the Sopeña Lay Movement and the Sopeña Social and Cultural Work. These institutions are active in Spain, Italy, Argentina, Colombia, Cuba, Chile, Ecuador, Mexico and the Dominican Republic.

The other four to be beatified in St. Peter's Square are:

-- Pierre Bonhomme, priest, founder of the Congregation of the Sisters of Our Lady of Calvary (1803-1861);

-- María Caridad Brader, virgin, foundress of the Congregation of the Franciscan Sisters of Mary Immaculate (1860-1943);

-- Juana María Condesa Lluch, foundress of the Congregation of the Handmaids of Mary Immaculate (1862-1916); and

-- Laszlo Batthyany Strattmann, layman, father of a family (1870-1931).

25 Vatican Stamps Issued for Each Year of John Paul II's Pontificate

VATICAN CITY, MARCH 19, 2003 (Zenit.org)

Vatican City's Philatelic Office will celebrate John Paul II's 25th anniversary as Pope by issuing 25 stamps recalling a key event of each of these years.

The 1981 stamp will reflect the attack on the Holy Father in St. Peter's Square on May 13.

The 1986 stamp recalls the Pope's visit to a synagogue. The one for 1984 shows John Paul II next to Sandro Pertini, then president of Italy.

The 2002 stamp depicts the Pope's first visit to the Italian Parliament. A silver stamp with the Pope's face completes the series.

See www.vatican.va/vatican_city_state/services/stamps_coins/index_it.htm



The focus of Pope John Paul's reflections at today's general audience, held in St. Peter's Square in the presence of 12,000 pilgrims, was St. Joseph, spouse of Mary, whose solemnity the Church celebrates today. The Pope noted that the liturgy refers to him as "the 'father' of Jesus, ready to fulfill the divine plan, even when it escapes human understanding."

"St. Joseph is defined in the Gospel," he continued, "as a 'just man', and he is for all believers a model of life in faith. The word 'just' recalls his moral rectitude, his sincere attachment to practicing the law and his behavior of total openness to the will of the heavenly Father. Even in difficult and sometimes dramatic moments, the humble carpenter from Nazareth never presumed he had a right to question God's project."

The Holy Father noted that St. Joseph followed God's call "with docile responsibility: he listened carefully to the angel when it was a question of taking the Virgin of Nazareth as his spouse, of fleeing into Egypt, of returning to Israel. In few but meaningful verses the evangelists describe him as the thoughtful guardian of Jesus, an attentive and faithful spouse, who exercises authority in the family in a constant attitude of service."

Because of his hard manual labor to provide for his family, added the Pope, "the Church justly calls St. Joseph the patron of workers. Thus, today's solemnity is a propitious occasion to reflect on the importance of work in the life of man, the family and the community. Man is the subject and the protagonist of work. ... Human activity, recalls Vatican Council II, derives from man and is ordered to man."

In closing remarks, John Paul II asked "St. Joseph, patron of the Universal Church, to watch over the entire ecclesial community and, man of peace that he was, to obtain for all of mankind, especially for the peoples threatened in these hours by war, the precious gift of harmony and peace."

The Pope reiterated those sentiments when, after the catechesis, he greeted in various languages the pilgrim groups present. He noted that "numerous faithful are here who have come with the Benedictine torch of peace that was lit in New Norcia in Australia and which today rests at the tomb of the Apostles, and will then proceed to Norcia. ... Dear Brothers and sisters, while I thank you for today's visit, I hope that this traditional initiative, in these hours of trepidation for peace, will contribute to reviving in souls a decisive will for harmony and reconciliation."

John Paul II's Message for 18th World Youth Day
"Behold, Your Mother!"

VATICAN CITY, MARCH 19, 2003 (Zenit.org)

Here is John Paul II's Message for the 18th World Youth Day, which will take place at the diocesan level April 13.

* * *

"Behold, Your Mother!" (Jn 19,27)

My dear young people!

1. It always gives me great joy to address a special message to you on the occasion of World Youth Day. It is also a way to show you the extent of my affection for you. The vivid recollection of my experiences during our World Youth Day meetings is impressed on my memory: young people and the Pope together, and a large gathering of Bishops and priests, all with our gaze on Christ, light of the world, invoking him and proclaiming him to the entire human family. While I give thanks to God for the witness of faith that you have given once again recently in Toronto, I renew the invitation I made to you on the banks of Lake Ontario: "the Church today looks to you with confidence and expects you to be the people of the Beatitudes!" (Exhibition Place, 25 July 2002; ORE, 31 July 2002, p. 6).

For the 18th World Youth Day that will be celebrated in dioceses all over the world, I have chosen a theme related to the Year of the Rosary: "Behold, your mother!" (Jn 19,27). Before his death, Jesus entrusted to the apostle John what was most precious to him: his Mother, Mary. These are the final words of the Redeemer, and therefore they take on a solemn nature and could be regarded as his spiritual testimony.

2. The angel Gabriel's words in Nazareth: "Hail, full of grace" (Lk 1,28) also cast light on the scene at Calvary. The Annunciation comes at the beginning, the Cross signals the fulfillment. At the Annunciation, Mary gives human nature to the Son of God within her womb; at the foot of the Cross, she welcomes the whole of humanity within her heart in the person of John. She was Mother of God from the first moments of the Incarnation, and she became the Mother of humanity during the final moments of the life of her Son Jesus on earth. She, who was without sin, on Calvary "experienced" within her own being the suffering of sin that her Son had taken upon himself to save humankind. At the foot of the Cross on which was dying the One whom she had conceived at the moment of her "yes" at the Annunciation, Mary received, as it were, a "second annunciation": "Woman, behold, your son!" (Jn 19,26).

The Son upon the Cross can pour out his suffering into his Mother's heart. Every child who suffers experiences that need. You too, my dear young people, are faced with suffering: loneliness, failures and disappointments in your personal lives; difficulties in inserting yourselves in the adult world and in professional life: the separations and losses in your families; the violence of war and the death of the innocent. Know, however, that in difficult times, which everyone experiences, you are not alone: like John at the foot of the Cross, Jesus also gives his Mother to you so that she will comfort you with her tenderness.

3. It says in the Gospel that "from that hour the disciple took her to his own home (Jn 19,27). This statement, the subject of many commentaries since early Christian times, does not simply point out the place where John lived. Beyond the material aspect, it evokes the spiritual dimension of this welcome and of the new bond established between Mary and John.

My dear young people, you are more or less the same age as John and you have the same desire to be with Jesus. Today, it is you whom Jesus expressly asks to receive Mary "into your home" and to welcome her "as one of yours"; to learn from her the one who "kept all these things, pondering them in her heart" (Lk 2,19) that inner disposition to listen and the attitude of humility and generosity that singled her out as God's first collaborator in the work of salvation. She will discharge her ministry as a mother and train you and mould you until Christ is fully formed in you (cf. Rosarium Virginis Mariae, n. 15).

4. This is why I now wish to repeat the motto of my episcopal and pontifical service: "Totus tuus". Throughout my life I have experienced the loving and forceful presence of the Mother of Our Lord. Mary accompanies me every day in the fulfillment of my mission as Successor of Peter.

Mary is Mother of divine grace, because she is the Mother of the Author of grace. Entrust yourselves to her with complete confidence! You will be radiant with the beauty of Christ. Open up to the breath of the Spirit, and you will become courageous apostles, capable of spreading the fire of charity and the light of truth all around you. In Mary's school, you will discover the specific commitment that Christ expects of you, and you will learn to put Christ first in your lives, and to direct your thoughts and actions to him.

Dear young people, you know that Christianity is not an opinion nor does it consist of empty words. Christianity is Christ! It is a Person, a Living Person! To meet Jesus, to love him and make him loved: this is the Christian vocation. Mary was given to you to help you enter into a more authentic and more personal relationship with Jesus. Through her example, Mary teaches you to gaze on him with love, for He has loved us first. Through her intercession, she forms in you a disciple's heart able to listen to her Son, who reveals the face of his Father and the true dignity of the human person.

5. On 16 October 2002 I proclaimed the "Year of the Rosary", and I invited all the children of the Church to make of this ancient Marian prayer a simple and profound exercise in contemplation of the face of Christ. To recite the Rosary means to learn to gaze on Jesus with his Mother's eyes, and to love Jesus with his Mother's heart. Today, my dear young people, I am also, in spirit, handing you the Rosary beads. Through prayer and meditation on the mysteries, Mary leads you safely towards her Son! Do not be ashamed to recite the Rosary alone, while you walk along the streets to school, to the university or to work, or as you commute by public transport. Adopt the habit of reciting it among yourselves, in your groups, movements and associations. Do not hesitate to suggest that it be recited at home by your parents and brothers and sisters, because it rekindles and strengthens the bonds between family members. This prayer will help you to be strong in your faith, constant in charity, joyful and persevering in hope.

With Mary, the handmaiden of the Lord, you will discover the joy and fruitfulness of the hidden life. With her, disciple of the Master, you will follow Jesus along the streets of Palestine, becoming witnesses of his preaching and his miracles. With her, the sorrowful Mother, you will accompany Jesus in his passion and death. With her, Virgin of hope, you will welcome the festive Easter proclamation and the priceless gift of the Holy Spirit.

6. My dear young people, only Jesus knows what is in your hearts and your deepest desires. Only He, who has loved you to the end (cf. Jn 13,1), can fulfill your aspirations. His are words of eternal life, words that give meaning to life. No one apart from Christ can give you true happiness. By following the example of Mary, you should know how to give Him your unconditional "yes". There is no place in your lives for selfishness or laziness. Now more than ever it is crucial that you be "watchers of the dawn", the lookouts who announce the light of dawn and the new springtime of the Gospel of which the buds can already be seen. Humanity is in urgent need of the witness of free and courageous young people who dare to go against the tide and proclaim with vigor and enthusiasm their personal faith in God, Lord and Savior.

You are also aware, my dear friends, that this mission is not easy. It becomes absolutely impossible if one counts only on oneself. But "what is impossible with men is possible for God" (Lk 18,27; 1,37).

True disciples of Christ are conscious of their own weakness. For this reason they put all their trust in the grace of God and they accept it with undivided hearts, convinced that without Him they can do nothing (cf. Jn 15,5). What characterizes them and distinguishes them from others is not their talents or natural gifts. It is their firm determination to proceed as followers of Jesus. May you be imitators of them as they were of Christ! "May the eyes of your heart be enlightened, that you may know what is the hope that belongs to his call, what are the riches of glory in his inheritance among the holy ones, and what is the surpassing greatness of his power for us who believe, in accord with the exercise of his great might" (Eph 1,18-19).

7. My dear young people, the next World Meeting will be held, as you know, in Germany in 2005 in the city and diocese of Cologne. The road is still long, but the two years that separate us from that appointment can serve as a time of intense preparation. To help you on this path, I have chosen the following themes for you:

-- 2004: 19th World Youth Day: "We wish to see Jesus" (Jn 12,21);

-- 2005: 20th World Youth Day: "We have come to worship him" (Mt 2,2).

Meanwhile, you will meet in your local Church on Palm Sunday: live this experience with commitment, in prayer, in attentive listening and joyful sharing in these opportunities for "ongoing learning", and showing your lively devout faith! Like the Magi, you too should be pilgrims stimulated by the desire to find the Messiah and to adore Him! Courageously proclaim that Christ, who died and is risen, has vanquished evil and death!

In these times threatened by violence, hatred and war, you must witness that he and he alone can give true peace to the heart of individuals, families and peoples on this earth. Commit yourselves to seeking and promoting peace, justice and fellowship. Do not forget the words of the Gospel: "Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God" (Mt 5,9).

As I entrust you to the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of Christ and Mother of the Church, I accompany you with a special Apostolic Blessing, sign of my trust and demonstration of my affection for you all.

From the Vatican, 8 March 2003.


[English text distributed by Vatican press office]

From L’Osservatore Romano

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Mary in the Secular Press

The director and editors of Mary Page under the auspices of the International Marian Research Institute do not necessarily endorse or agree with the events and ideas expressed in this feature. Our sole purpose is to report on items about Mary gleaned from a myriad of papers representing the secular press.

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