Liturgical Season 10/2/03 World News
New Resources  Marian Events  Mary in the Secular Press
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Marian Library
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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 month of October with Mary:

Marian Commemoration Days

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 October.

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 September 26.  Previous Reflections are listed on our Rosary Index.  Please note that many of these documents are available in Spanish as well as English.

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New Resources

A section on international stamps with images of Mary has been added to our Resources index.  The latest added was Mexico.  Expect more countries to follow.

A section on Marian Spiritualities has also been added to our Resources index.  The latest additions were papers on the spirituality of three famous converts.  Expect more articles to follow.

We have also posted our answer to a reader's question: Is there Marian imagery in Disney's Pinocchio? as well as a new section on Japan within our list of Marian Shrine Addresses.

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  News from the Marian Library

Memorial Fund

MMA Development has set up a memorial fund in the name of Robert Swank (the late husband of Annamaria Poma-Swank, former IMRI Professor). These funds will be redirected to The Cloisters Library.

Donation checks should be made payable to The Metropolitan Museum of Art and mailed to:

The Metropolitan Museum of Art
 Development Office 
1000 Fifth Avenue 
New York, NY 10029

Attn: Corin Crucitti

Note: The memo portion of the check should say "in memory of Robert Swank," Or the donor can include a note with this same information. Please pass this information along to all interested parties.

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Vatican Exhibit on Display Now!

The Marian Library/International Marian Research Institute invites you to visit The Mother of God: Art Celebrates Mary, thirty-eight paintings and sculptures from the permanent collection of The Vatican Museums, spanning seventeen centuries of Christian art and reflecting cultures worldwide.

September 4 - November 10, 2003

Roesch and Marian Library Galleries in Roesch Library on the University of Dayton Campus.
Monday - Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.  Saturday and Sunday, 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.

Free Admission -- Parking Available

For tours and information call: (937) 229-4254 or email: VaticanExhibit@notes.udayton.edu.
A virtual exhibit may be seen on our Gallery section under Current Exhibit.
Seminars related to the exhibit will be held in the LTC on Thursday nights through November 20.
For details on these lectures, click into http://www.udayton.edu/mary/gallery/vatseminars.html.
Exhibits of Rosaries of the World and of Creches will also be on display during this time.
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 Fall 2002 - Fall 2003 is now available for view.  
Courses for the Fall semester are scheduled to commence on Oct. 20, 2003.

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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

Robert Buchanon's watercolor painting 'Chartres Cathedral' is on view as part of the exhibition 'Art by Architects,' at the Kettering Government Center Gallery through October 8.

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



In today's general audience, celebrated in St. Peter's Square, the Pope spoke about the canticle of Zechariah, the father of John the Baptist. He noted that this canticle, which is commonly known as the "Benedictus," is a "blessing that proclaims the saving action and liberation offered by the Lord to His people." ...

As he greeted the pilgrims in different languages, the Pope recalled that today begins the month of the Rosary, and he invited everyone to "re-discover the beauty and richness of this Marian prayer in private as well as in the parish community, and especially, in the family."

From Zenit

Pope Stresses Need to Pray the Rosary

Urges Confidence in the Virgin Mary

VATICAN CITY, OCT. 1, 2003 (Zenit.org)

Looking ahead to his pilgrimage to Pompeii in southern Italy, John Paul II invited believers to pray the rosary. "God willing, on Oct. 7, the day dedicated to the Blessed Virgin of the Rosary," the Pope told today's general audience, "I will go on pilgrimage to the Shrine of Pompeii to thank God for the work of sanctification of hearts that he realizes uninterruptedly thanks to this prayer." ...

"Let us take ever more recourse to her," John Paul II said in his mother tongue. "May the living of the mysteries of Christ with Mary bring us ever closer to him, and be a spiritual path toward our meeting with him in the glory of heaven." The Holy Father, who at times seemed fatigued while reading his address and greeting pilgrims in 10 languages, spoke again in Italian before bidding the pilgrims farewell. He reminded them that this month marks the end of the Year of the Rosary.

Greeting young people, the sick and newlyweds in the square, the Pontiff invited them to "pray with devotion this prayer so loved by the tradition of the Christian people." "Abandon yourselves with confidence into the hands of Mary, invoking her incessantly with the rosary, meditation of the mysteries of Christ," he added, prompting spontaneous applause from the faithful.

On his pilgrimage to Pompeii, the Holy Father will leave the Vatican by helicopter at 9 a.m. He will go to pray for world peace and to recite the rosary at a shrine near Naples. He is scheduled to return to Rome at 1:30 p.m.

Vatican sources confirmed to ZENIT that the Pope, as previously scheduled, will participate this Sunday in the Mass of canonization of three blessed: Daniel Comboni, Arnold Janssen and Josef Freinademetz.


VATICAN CITY, SEPT. 28, 2003 (Zenit.org)

Here is a translation of the address John Paul II delivered today before reciting the midday Angelus, in which he announced the elevation of 31 new cardinals.

* * *

Dear Brothers and Sisters:

1. The month of October, month of the rosary, is about to begin. I entrust to the Virgin in a particular way the consistory I want to hold on Oct. 21, on the occasion of the 25th year of my pontificate. In it, once again going beyond the numerical limit established, I shall create new cardinals.

2. Among them, first of all, are some of my collaborators in the Roman Curia. These are their names:

-- Archbishop Jean-Louis Tauran;
-- Archbishop Renato Raffaele Martino;
-- Archbishop Francesco Marchisano;
-- Archbishop Julián Herranz;
-- Archbishop Javier Lozano Barragán;
-- Archbishop Stephen Fumio Hamao;
-- Archbishop Attilio Nicora.

Then there are 19 pastors of as many local Churches. Their names are:

-- Archbishop Angelo Scola, patriarch of Venice [Italy];
-- Archbishop Anthony Olubunmi Okogie, archbishop of Lagos [Nigeria];
-- Archbishop Bernard Panafieu, archbishop of Marseilles [France];
-- Archbishop Gabriel Zubeir Wako, archbishop of Khartoum [Sudan];
-- Archbishop Carlos Amigo Vallejo, archbishop of Seville [Spain];
-- Archbishop Justin Francis Rigali, archbishop of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania];
-- Archbishop Keith Michael Patrick O'Brien, archbishop of St. Andrews and Edinburgh [Scotland];
-- Archbishop Eusebio Oscar Scheid, SCJ, archbishop of Sao Sebastian of Rio de Janeiro [Brazil];
-- Archbishop Ennio Antonelli, archbishop of Florence [Italy]
-- Archbishop Tarcisio Bertone, archbishop of Genoa [Italy];
-- Archbishop Peter Kodwo Appiah Turkson, archbishop of Cape Coast [Ghana];
-- Archbishop Telesphore Placidus Toppo, archbishop of Ranchi [India];
-- Archbishop George Pell, archbishop of Sydney [Australia];
-- Archbishop Josip Bozanic, archbishop of Zagreb [Croatia];
-- Archbishop Jean Baptiste Pham Minh Man, archbishop of Ho Chi City [Vietnam];
-- Archbishop Rodolfo Quezada Toruńo, archbishop of Guatemala City [Guatemala]
-- Archbishop Philippe Barbarin, archbishop of Lyon [France];
-- Archbishop Peter Erdö, archbishop of Esztergom-Budapest [Hungary];
-- Archbishop Marc Ouellet, PPS, archbishop of Quebec [Canada].

Among the new cardinals in addition are four ecclesiastics with particular merits due to their commitment in the service of the Church. They are:

-- Father Georges Marie Martin Cottier, OP, theologian of the Papal Household [Switzerland];
-- Monsignor Gustaaf Joos, of the Diocese of Gand [Belgium];
-- Father Thomas Spidlik, SJ [Czech Republic];
-- Father Stanislas Nagy, of the priests of the Sacred Heart of Jesus [Poland].

Finally, I wish to say that I have appointed cardinal another distinguished prelate, whose name I reserve "in pectore."

3. The candidates to the cardinal's hat come from various parts of the world and carry out different tasks at the service of the People of God. All together, with the multiplicity of their services, they reflect the universality of the Church.

Let us entrust the newly elected to the Holy Virgin, invoking her maternal protection on them and their respective tasks in the vineyard of the Lord.

From L’Osservatore Romano

Not posted this week.

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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.

A reasonable assumption [Source: The Spectator, 8/16/2003]

You'd have to be mad to believe in a dodgy dogma invented in 1950. Christopher Howse takes a rationally long view of it. Anglicans in the United States believe it is a good idea for bishops to express their homosexual preferences genitally with long-stay companions. Some people will believe anything.

Others find it hard to believe in the event commemorated each 15 August, the Assumption into Heaven of the Virgin Mary. I can't myself see it is any harder to believe than the substantial presence of Jesus Christ, body, blood, soul and divinity, in the Eucharist.

But I think I know the reason people find the Assumption a credal crux. It is because they suppose the dogma was invented on 1 November 1950, when Good Pope Pius XII declared that 'the ever Virgin Mary, having completed the course of her earthly life, was assumed body and soul into heavenly glory'. To make matters apparently worse, this was the sole addition to the creed made under the terms of papal infallibility declared in 1870. You only have to say 'infallible' and it sets people scratching their organs of doubt. But deny this dogma and you fry. In kindly Pope Pius's words, you will 'incur the wrath of Almighty God and of the Blessed Apostles Peter and Paul'. Blimey! The wrath of Almighty God I am used to, but those Blessed Apostles sound heavy.

In fact, the doctrine of the Assumption was already ancient when it was represented with great beauty by El Greco and suchlike Old Masters. It was long held among Catholics to be 'impious and blasphemous' to deny the Virgin's Assumption. If she's not in Heaven, where's the body?

Try the Sepulchre of the Virgin Mary in the Kedron valley, down a flight of steps where a rock-hewn chamber dating from the 5th century houses the 'glorious tomb of the Mother of God', a house-shaped structure eight feet high. According to St Gregory of Tours, St Sophronius the Patriarch of Jerusalem and our own St Bede, it was a popular pilgrimage destination. The difference from most saints' tombs is that even then it was empty.

An empty tomb proves nothing, as in a different context the first worshippers of Jesus found. And indeed the doctrine does not require a belief that Mary did not die.

Still, assumption 'body and soul' sounds a bit too solid to swallow as a 'spiritual' kind of teaching. If meant literally, isn't the belief so irrational as to entitle the believer to a season ticket to whatever bin has survived the policy of care in the community?

I don't see why. Most attempts to make belief more believable are counterproductive. If you say that Jesus only looked like he was walking on water because there was a sandbank below the surface, or that the 5,000 were fed because Jesus persuaded them to share their packed lunches, where does that leave you when you are expected to believe that Jesus rose again body and soul from the dead?

To approach the Assumption rationally I'd start with the Resurrection of Jesus. Jesus was God, otherwise the reconciliation he achieved between mankind and God would not have been effective. But he was man too, and in his human body ate breakfast on the beach of the Sea of Galilee after the Resurrection, not as a ghost. And Jesus ascended into Heaven, body and soul. Even the US Episcopalians believe that, in principle.

So where is Jesus's body now? In Heaven. Doesn't that make Heaven, sort of, well . . . a physical place? Seems so.

People often like to talk garbage about us entering 'eternity' when we die, as if we merged with God (who, as Pure Act, has all his being at once and is not limited by the passing of time). But we humans are not God, and we won't acquire God's almighty powers when we're dead. Indeed, the immediate outlook for a dead soul is not encouraging.

Human beings have bodies, and are lost without them. The soul is the informing principle of the body. Bunny rabbits and daffodils have wee souls too; rabbits have animal souls and uncut flowers have vegetable souls. I'm not making this up. These corporeal souls are the forms of the creatures they animate. In the Aristotelian hylomorphic theory, the form of a creature makes it what it is, distinguishing it from some lump of matter formed in a different way.

Cut the daffodil or smother the rabbit in a delicious Dijon mustard sauce and you snuff out their souls. They're dead meat. The only reason human souls survive death is that men are intellectual beings; there is an immaterial element in their make-up that cannot decay like the material parts.

At the same time, all our knowledge comes to us through our senses. Shut yourself in a cupboard like Descartes and you know sweet Fanny Adams. Our knowledge of 'the other', whether our mother, lover, the world or the non-world, is derived from sight, hearing, touch, smell and so on.

So if you die - when you die - you're in trouble. You cannot see or hear. You have nothing to perform the grosser kind of thinking with. Since the brain keeps the imaginative memory going, post mortem you'll get an almighty Alzheimer's attack. You couldn't know what was going on.

The only impact made on our poor disembodied souls will be God's. If you have the happy fortune of going to Heaven, then you will know God and it will be very enjoyable. We have a natural affinity with God, and through his gift of grace we are elevated to share his searing furnace of love and wisdom. I speak metaphorically.

We Christians look forward to the resurrection of the body. It's in the creed that churchgoers say every Sunday. When our bodies rise again, though not through any crude reassembly of previously owned atoms (many of which will have been reused by subsequent generations), they will be as like our present bodies only as much as the grown wheat is like the seed.

What we do know is that the man Jesus Christ has gone there already. His glorified body lived on earth, ascended into Heaven and lives there now. As for the Virgin Mary, her biography is full of God's interventions.

She did not sin. By virtue of the merits of her son, she did not even suffer the stain of original sin, which is only too evident in your life, reader, if you ask me. She remained a virgin yet gave birth to the Son of God.

Where Jesus, the head of the Church, went, his mystical body of believers can follow. It seems very suitable that his remarkably engraced mother should be the first to benefit bodily from the opening of Heaven.

'It was fitting that God's Mother should possess what belongs to her Son, ' wrote John of Damascus (born in 676), a Church Father who represented both Eastern and Western traditions. It fulfils those words in the Gospel according to Luke: 'Hail, full of grace.'

Anyway, Christians do not just come to believe things on a whim. They belong to a Church which teaches them. If everyone had to work it all out from scratch like Pythagoras' theorem, few would get far. The Church, East and West, has always believed implicitly in the Assumption. Pius XII wrote to all the bishops in 1946 asking if they, the clergy and the people believed in it. Yup, they said. So he got out his dogma-defining kit.

It is not just a case of God being able to do anything. The Assumption fits into a pattern. And it is a very cheering belief for those of us who have bodies.

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