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Liturgical Season 3/26/04 World News
New Resources  Marian Events  Mary in the Secular Press
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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 March 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 March.

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New Resources

To help users locate The Mary Page, we have created an alternate web address, marypage.udayton.edu.

A section on Marian Spiritualities has been added to our Resources index.  The latest addition was a paper by Brother John Samaha on Mary in Byzantine Spirituality.  Expect more articles to follow.

A section on international stamps with images of Mary has also been added to our Resources index.  The latest added was Raphael's Madonnas on Stamps.  Expect more countries to follow.

A section on Mary and Women is now under construction in our Resources index.  The latest addition was Magisterial Documents on Women.  Expect more articles to follow.

We have posted our answers to the following reader questions: Is there a Marian symbolism related to the moon?; What is a Russian Rosary?; Who is Our Lady of Kodiak?; What is the origin of the term "Rosary"?; and What are the ten evangelical virtues of Mary?  We have also revised a Litany of Mary published by Rosaries of Divine Union, and added an exhibit of the Book of Revelation by Anton Mutter to our Gallery.

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  News from the Marian Library

International Marian Research Institute Course Schedule

IMRI courses for the Fall 2003 semester concluded on Nov. 14.  The schedule of future IMRI courses will be posted on the Mary Page when available.

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New Exhibit

Faith Meets Art

The Artist and the Bible: 20th Century Works on Paper will be on display in the Marian Library and Roesch Library galleries from March 1 to April 10, 2004.  The Galleries are open from 8:30 am to 4:30 pm weekdays and 10 am to 6 pm on weekends.  For more information, or to arrange for viewing at another time, call (937) 229-4214.  A virtual exhibit may be seen on our Gallery section under Current Exhibit.

New Crèches will also be on display in our museum through November 2004.

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Marian Events

Vatican Art Exhibit

After the very successful Vatican exhibit, The Mother of God: Art Celebrates Mary, Cincinnati's Museum Center (Union Terminal) offers another exhibit of Vatican treasures under the title of Saint Peter and the Vatican: The Legacy of the Popes.  The exhibit will be running through April 18, 2004.  For those interested in visiting the display, we offer a general introduction and some samples of the various sections of the extensive exhibit.

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

POPE RECALLS CONSECRATION TO THE IMMACULATE HEART OF MARY

VATICAN CITY, MAR 24, 2004 (VIS)

During today’s general audience, celebrated in St. Peter’s Square, the Pope reminded the pilgrims that tomorrow is the feast of the Annunciation "which allows us to contemplate the Incarnation of the Eternal Word made man in Mary’s womb."

Our Lady’s "fiat" or "yes" in the moment of the Annunciation, said the Pope, "echoes that of the Word Incarnate" to which we must add "our ‘yes’ with respect to God’s mysterious plans. Only through full adhesion to the divine will do true joy and peace flourish, which we all hope for ardently for our times."

John Paul II recalled three moments in his pontificate when he entrusted the Church, the world and mankind to Mary: December 8, 1978 when he entrusted the Church and world to her; June 4, 1979, renewing this vow at the shrine of the Black Madonna in Poland and again in 1984. "I remember especially March 25, 1984, the Holy Year. Twenty years have gone by since that day when in spiritual union with all the bishops of the world I entrusted all of mankind to the Immaculate Heart of Mary in response to Our Lady’s plea in Fatima."

After emphasizing that "in those moments humanity was living difficult times of great apprehension and uncertainty," he added. "Twenty years later, the world is still marred by hatred, violence, terrorism and war. Among the many victims that make the news every day, there are so many innocent people who are killed while they carry out their work. Today, which is dedicated to commemoration and prayer for the ‘martyr missionaries’, we must also commemorate the priests, consecrated persons and lay faithful who died in mission territory in 2003. So much blood continues to be shed in many regions around the world. It is still urgent that men open their hearts to a courageous effort of reciprocal understanding. The wait for justice and peace becomes longer and longer in every part of the world. How can we respond to this thirst for hope and love if not with Christ through Mary?"

The Pope concluded by repeating his petition to Our Lady in 1984: "Mother of Christ, may the infinite saving power of the Redemption, power of divine love, reveal itself once again in the history of the world! May it stop evil! May it transform our consciences! May the light of hope in your Immaculate heart be revealed to us all!"

From Zenit

John Paul II Again Entrusts World to Mary

Renews Act of Consecration of 1984

VATICAN CITY, MARCH 24, 2004 (Zenit.org)

At a time of "violence, terrorism and war," John Paul II again consecrated the world to the Blessed Virgin Mary.

During today's general audience in St. Peter's Square, the Pope renewed the 1984 act of consecration of humanity to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, "responding to what Our Lady had requested at Fatima."

The Holy Father previously had asked bishops worldwide to carry out the 1984 act of consecration to Mary in their respective dioceses. Sister Lucia, one of the visionaries of the Marian apparitions, confirmed later that the solemn and universal consecration corresponded to the Blessed Virgin's wishes.

"Humanity was then going through difficult times, of great concern and uncertainty," John Paul II recalled today. "Twenty years later, the world continues to be fearfully marked by hatred, violence, terrorism and war."

"Among the numerous victims that the news records every day, there are so many defenseless people, stricken while carrying out their duty," he added at the general audience, which he dedicated to reflect on this Thursday's solemnity of the Annunciation.

"So much blood continues to be spilt in many regions of the world," the Pope said. "The need is still urgent for people to open their hearts to a courageous effort of reciprocal understanding. The hope for justice and peace is ever greater in every part of the earth."

"How can we respond to this thirst for hope and love other than by taking recourse to Christ through Mary?" he asked.

The Holy Father concluded with the prayer he raised on that historic day 20 years ago.

"Mother of Christ," he said, "may the infinite salvific power of the Redemption be revealed once again in the history of the world: power of merciful Love! May it put a stop to evil! May it transform consciences! May the light of hope be revealed to all in your Immaculate Heart!"

In his address, the Pope mentioned other key moments of his pontificate.

He recalled Dec. 8, 1978, when he placed the Church and the world in Mary's hands in the Basilica of St. Mary Major. Then, on June 4, 1979, during his first trip to Poland as Pope, "I renewed this entrustment in the Shrine of Jasna Gora."

On the Meaning of the Annunciation

John Paul II Entrusts Fears of the World to Mary

VATICAN CITY, MARCH 24, 2004 (Zenit.org)

Here is a translation of the address John Paul II gave today at the general audience, which he dedicated to comment on the meaning of Thursday's solemnity of the Annunciation.

* * *

1. Tomorrow we celebrate the solemnity of the Annunciation, which allows us contemplate the Incarnation of the eternal Word, made man in Mary's womb. The Virgin's "yes" opened the doors to the realization of the salvific plan of the heavenly Father, a plan of redemption for all people.

This feast, which this year falls in the middle of Lent, on one hand refers us to the beginnings of salvation, and on the other invites us to turn our gaze to the paschal mystery. We look at Christ crucified who has redeemed humanity, fulfilling to the end the will of the Father. On Calvary, in his last moments of life, Jesus entrusted us to Mary as Mother and to her he has commended us as children.

Associated to the mystery of the Incarnation, Our Lady is co-participant in the mystery of redemption. Her fiat, which we recall tomorrow, echoes that of the incarnate Word. In profound symphony with Christ's and the Virgin's fiat, each one of us is called to unite his own "yes" to the mysterious plans of Providence. In fact, only from full adherence to the Divine Will do that joy and true peace spring which we all ardently desire also for our times.

2. On the vigil of this feast, at once Christological and Marian, my thoughts turn to some significant moments at the beginning of my pontificate: the 8th of December of 1978 at St. Mary Major, when I entrusted the Church and the world to Our Lady; the 4th of June of the following year, when I renewed this entrustment in the Shrine of Jasna Gora. In particular, I am thinking of the 25th of March of 1984, Holy Year of the Redemption. Twenty years have gone by since that day, when in St. Peter's Square, in spiritual union with all the bishops of the world "convoked" in advance, I wished to entrust the whole of humanity to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, responding to what Our Lady had requested at Fatima.

3. Humanity was then going through difficult times, of great concern and uncertainty. Twenty years later, the world continues to be fearfully marked by hatred, violence, terrorism and war. Among the numerous victims that the news records every day, there are so many defenseless people, stricken while carrying out their duty. In today's Day, dedicated to the memory and to prayer for the "Martyr Missionaries," we cannot but remember the priests, consecrated persons, and lay faithful deceased in mission land in the course of 2003. So much blood continues to be spilt in many regions of the world. The need is still urgent for people to open their hearts to a courageous effort of reciprocal understanding. The hope for justice and peace is ever greater in every part of the earth. How can we respond to this thirst for hope and love other than by taking recourse to Christ, through Mary? To the Holy Virgin I repeat also today the supplication I addressed to her then. "Mother of Christ, may the infinite salvific power of the Redemption be revealed once again in the history of the world: power of merciful Love! May it put a stop to evil! May it transform consciences! May the light of hope be revealed to all in your Immaculate Heart!"

[Translation by ZENIT]

[At the end of the audience, one of the Holy Father's aides read the following summary in English:]

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

Tomorrow we celebrate the solemnity of the Annunciation, recalling the Virgin's unconditional "yes" which opened the way to God's salvific plan for all men and women. This feast, in the heart of Lent, draws our minds to Calvary where, in full obedience to the will of the Father, the crucified Christ redeemed humanity.

Like the fiat of Mary and of Jesus, we too are called to unite our own "yes" to God's Providence. Only in this way can the joy and peace for which the world longs emerge.

Through the Immaculate Heart of Mary, let us entrust ourselves to the power of Christ's merciful love.

[John Paul II then greeted pilgrims in several languages. In English, he said:]

I extend a special welcome to the English-speaking visitors and pilgrims here today, including groups from England, Sweden and the United States of America. May your visit to Rome be a time of spiritual enrichment. Entrusting you to the protection of Mary, I invoke upon you the grace and peace of her Son, our Lord, Jesus Christ.

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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.

Prayer service today at site of vandalized Mary image [Source: St. Petersburg Times (Florida), 3/5/2004]

Leaders of the Shepherds of Christ ministry expect a crowd for their special prayer service this evening at the defaced Virgin Mary building. Shepherds of Christ, which owns the building at U.S. 19 and Drew Street, holds a special prayer service on the fifth of every month. But today's service will be bittersweet, because vandals on Monday morning broke out the top three windows that contained the shape many consider to be an apparition of the Virgin Mary. The service starts at 6:20 p.m. "I just hope we get a lot of people praying," said Rosie Reed, the ministry's site leader. Reed said the windows could be replaced today or Monday through help from a donor. Reed also said the ministry is seeking donations of rosaries. There have been no arrests in the vandalism, which was caused by ball bearings that may have been shot from a slingshot. Three ball bearings were found near the windows Monday, Reed said. A volunteer found a fourth ball bearing below the windows Wednesday night and volunteers turned it over to police.

Medford Mary's 'miracle tears' help some find deeper message [Source: Boston Herald, 2/29/2004]

The stains that some believe are tears on the face of the Virgin Mary at Sacred Heart Church in Medford drew dozens yesterday, some seeking to satisfy curiosity, some looking for a message.

"I physically felt her crying. I could tell inside she was sad," said Ginny DelSignore, 50, who painted the statue two years ago and believes it is a miracle. "I got a personal message. This is a sad world.  But God does not have just one message."

Joseph Tassone, 74, came prepared to be skeptical: "I thought maybe it was planted. But I don't think so.  It gives me a closer feeling.  She's watching over us.  She's trying to tell us something.  What it is may come at a later date."

His wife, Regina Tassone, 53, said, "She wants people to come together, to believe.  It's amazing, absolutely amazing, in our little town."

An archdiocese spokesman said the church has not yet investigated the claim of a miracle, which was first noticed Feb. 9.  Yesterday, dozens came, some wiping cloths on or holding religious medals to the statue.

Linda Withma, 52, who came from Groton, said, "I don't have the words to describe what I'm thinking or feeling, but I like what I'm seeing. I didn't know people were this awake (to their faith).  If this is what it takes ..."

Story of a mother's grief [Source: The Toronto Star, 2/27/2004]

How do you audition for the role of the Virgin Mary?  The short answer is, you don't.  Casting director Shaila Rubin presented Romanian theatre actor, Maia Morgenstern, for the role of Mary in The Passion Of The Christ.  When she met with director Mel Gibson in Rome--the film was partly shot in the Cinecitta studios--"it was actor to actor," says Morgenstern.

Mary doesn't have a lot to do in The Passion beyond watching, with increasing alarm and pain, the suffering of her 33-year-old son during his relentless torture and crucifixion.  Asked whether she thought a mother could have watched such brutality, Morgenstern becomes a passionate defendant of Gibson's direction.

"I am a mother. That was the point to start from and to arrive at.  It was the idea of having the mother seeing her child dying and the agony of the mother and her terrible fate.

"The movie is not a documentary, it's not psychological research.  It's a piece of film.  It's very allegorical; it's a metaphor."

This statement will come as a surprise to anyone who has endured the two-hour gore-fest that Gibson has put together in the name of the Lord.  "It is our story, our beauty, our art," Morgenstern insists.  "It has a lot of meanings from the philosophical and poetic point of view.

"The film is not a verdict.  It is very open.  There are many questions for the audience."

Morgenstern ventures a plausible explanation for the characterization of Mary.  "She's not a braveheart.  She's weak.  She is not able to move.  (At first) she said, 'I can't stand any more.'

"Afterwards she understands that her mission is to heal, to be there.  Maybe this is the fate of the mother."  Morgenstern has three children, a son of 20, also an actor, and two daughters, 5 and nine months.

The 42-year-old Jewish actor is known for her stage work with three Romanian theatre companies and her appearances in dozens of European films, including Theo Angelopoulos's Ulysses' Gaze.  To prepare for her role as Mary she studied texts and paintings and visited Italian museums.

"We were trying to avoid cliche by all means," she said, making a case for Gibson's portrait of Mary as a well-rounded character capable of hate, love, loss of faith, forgiveness or the lack of it.  A highlight of the film for Morgenstern were the roles Gibson wrote for the three main women characters.  Mary Magdalene was Monica Bellucci, known from the Matrix movies.  Claudia (Claudia Gerini), the wife of Governor Pontius Pilate, is portrayed as sympathetic to Mary.  At one point in the film, she brings linens to Mary to help wipe up the blood of Christ.

"The women in Mr. Mel Gibson's film are so beautiful," says Morgenstern, no slouch in the beauty department herself.  "I was flattered."

Added to her satisfaction in working with these women actors was the community of actors on location in Rome and Matera.  "We were from Morocco, Algeria, France, Italy, Bulgaria, Romania.  We had a lot of respect for each other."

The international brotherhood on the production stands in contrast to the hatred some say the film will stimulate.  "The film is not against Jews.  It is not against Romans," says Morgenstern.  "The film says that a human being can turn into a beast whenever he has a weapon in his hands and is in front of a helpless person."

For all her artistic commitment, Morgenstern said it was quite simple to disengage from the horror show going on during shooting.  The Christ on the cross who looks so real in the movie, was often a product of the props department.  "It was a puppet," she says, matter-of-factly.

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This page, maintained by The Marian Library/International Marian Research Institute, Dayton, Ohio 45469-1390, and created by Kris Sommers , was last modified Monday, 03/29/2004 15:25:34 EST by Michael P. Duricy . Please send any comments to jroten1@udayton.edu.