Liturgical Season 6/21/04 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 month of June 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 June.

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New Resources

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 Meditating the Passion of Our Lord with Stamps.  Expect more countries to follow.

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

The Marian Library has received many valuable donations of religious art.  The most recent is a collection of the works of Alex Rapoport from his widow, Irina.  Many thanks to all our benefactors!

We have updated the following features: The Hail Mary in Foreign Languages; and Is Our Lady of Loreto considered the Patron Saint of Aviators? and also added the following new feature: The Grotto of Our Lady in Daegu, South Korea.

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  News from the Marian Library

Alumni Update

Dr. Virginia Kimball, graduate of IMRI and current MSA President, recently visited an important exhibit of Byzantine art at the Metropolitan Museum in New York and had the following article web published: "Drawn to the nourishing ark of sanctification": Byzantium: Faith and Power (1261-1557) through the Hellenic Communication Service.

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Collaboration with Catholic.net

An important Catholic web site, www.catholic.net, has added a section on the Virgin Mary to the top of their list of 'channels.'  They plan to highlight particular items from The Mary Page and to encourage their audience to visit our site.  Please visit their site in return.  We expect more collaboration with them in the future.

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Current Exhibit

Messengers from God

An eclectic Marian Library exhibit showcasing works by internationally known Ukrainian artist Aka Pereyma and her daughter Christina opened June 7 in the Marian Library and will run through August 6.  For more information click into, Gallery.

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

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International Marian Research Institute Course Schedule

IMRI courses for the Summer 2004 semester started on June 14!  The schedule is available online.

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Marian Events

The Shrine Church of Our Lady of Mount Carmel Celebrates One Hundred Years of Papally Ordered Solemn Coronation of the Madonna of Mount Carmel

We wish to bring to your attention an extraordinary Marian event occurring this July. The Image of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, pontifically enshrined in the Church of the same name, will celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Crowning of the image by order of Popes Leo XIII and Saint Pius X.

The July Feast, now much more multi-cultural in nature, continues to draw thousands, including Italians, Haitians and persons of Hispanic extraction. Many come carrying their own candles, images, flowers or entering the Shrine on their knees in a show of devotion.

Shrine Church of Our Lady of Mount Carmel
448 East 116 Street
New York, N.Y. 10029

For more information contact Rev. Peter J, Rofrano at (212) 534-0681.

Marian Year Indulgence

Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception
400 Michigan Avenue NE
Washington, D.C. 20017-1566

Phone: 202-526-8300
FAX: 202-526-8313

Under the usual conditions, make a sacred pilgrimage to the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, as designated by the Holy Father, and there assist devoutly in a liturgical celebration or other pious exercise, in a group or individually, and recite the Lord's Prayer and the Profession of Faith or the Apostle's Creed (in any approved form).

For more information, click into: Marian Year Inaugurated at National Shrine.

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

Catholic Student's Modesty Impresses Nordstrom (National Catholic Register June 13-19,2004)

Ella Gunderson, an 11-year-old Catholic school student, has started what could become a new fashion by making clothing retailers take notice that girls and young women often wear styles that are fashionable without sacrificing their modesty.


"Our Blessed Mother is the epitome of purity and beauty.  She is a model for girls that beauty comes from a pure heart and a soul that honors God.  Modesty does not detract from beauty.  It adds mystery to and enhances it.  Modesty helps everyone to see a girl, not as an object, but as a precious soul made in the image of God." ...

Faithful celebrate four hundredth anniversary of Our Lady's Image (AsiaNews, June 17, 2004)

 The four hundred year anniversary of the arrival of Our Lady's image in the archdiocese of Tuguegarao, Cayagan province (Philippines), is being celebrated, along with the golden anniversary of the Canonical Coronation of Our Lady of Piat on June 21.  Cardinal Francesco Marchisano, President of the Pontifical Commission for Sacred Archeology, is in the country to witness the event's culmination at the coronation re-enactment and Grand Quadri-centennial Thanksgiving Mass at the Basilica Minor of Our Lady of Piat.

The 'Brown Madonna' image of Our Lady was brought in 1604 from Macau by the first Dominican missionaries to the northern Philippines to invite the natives to conversion to Christ.  It was then transferred to the town of Piat in 1920.  Today, the image has become one of the most venerated Marian shrines, as many Filipinos pilgrimage to the Minor Basilica where miracles have been attributed to Our Lady's intercession.  The origin of the image has been illustrated in "Our Lady of Piat," a new book launched during the celebrations, authored by Roberto Caballero.


From Zenit

What's Planned at Malta Congress for Priests

Deadline for Registration Is Aug. 31

VATICAN CITY, JUNE 9, 2004 (Zenit.org)

The Vatican Congregation for Clergy has published the program and organizational details of the international congress for priests, to be held in Malta from Oct. 18-23.

The theme of the congress is "Priests for the Formation of Saints for the New Millennium, in the Footsteps of the Apostle Paul."

In a May 21 letter to priests worldwide, Cardinal Darío Castrillón Hoyos, prefect of the dicastery, said that the registration forms must be sent to the Opera Romana Pellegrinaggi no later than Aug. 31.

The Mediterranean island of Malta was selected for the meeting because St. Paul spent three months there, after the shipwreck of the vessel that was taking him as prisoner to Rome.

Archbishop Joseph Mercieca of Malta will welcome the participants on Monday, Oct. 18, in the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist, in the capital of Valletta. Cardinal Castrillón Hoyos will preside over the solemn Mass marking the opening of the congress.

Cardinal George Pell of Sydney, Australia, will preside at the Oct. 19 lauds and meditation.

Two conferences will follow: "Paul, Evangelization, and the Challenge of the Encounter of Cultures" by Cardinal Castrillón Hoyos, and "Trinitarian Holiness of the Priest" by Monsignor Bruno Forte, theologian and member of the International Theological Commission.

In the afternoon, in parishes of Malta and in the cathedral of Mosta, there will be penitential celebrations and confessions by linguistic groups, entrusted to Cardinal Jean-Louis Tauran, librarian of the Holy Roman Church; Cardinal Peter Turkson of Cape Coast, Ghana; Cardinal Marian Jaworsky of Lviv of the Latins, Ukraine; and Cardinal Francisco Álvarez Martínez, retired archbishop of Toledo, Spain.

Cardinal Crescenzio Sepe, prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples, will preside at the Mass that afternoon in the cathedral.

Archbishop Sean O'Malley of Boston, Massachusetts, will preside at lauds and the meditation on Oct. 20.

A talk will follow by a theologian, Monsignor Juan Esquerda Bifet, who will focus on "The Christological Holiness of the Priest." The Papal Household preacher, Capuchin Father Raniero Cantalamessa, will speak on the "Pneumatological-Pauline Holiness of the Priest."

"Pauline Holiness for Evangelization" will be addressed by Cardinal Camillo Ruini, the Pope's vicar for Rome. He will deliver his address in the Grotto of St. Paul the Apostle in Mdina. The Mass which will follow in the cathedral will be presided over by Cardinal Ivan Dias of Bombay, India.

Cardinal Julio Terrazas of Santa Cruz, Bolivia, will preside at lauds on Oct. 21. Cardinal Angelo Scola of Venice, Italy, will follow with a talk on "The Eucharistic Holiness of the Priest." A conference on "The Marian Holiness of the Priest" will be delivered by Cardinal José Saraiva Martins, prefect of the Congregation for Sainthood Causes.

In the afternoon, after a tour of the city of Valletta, Archbishop Csaba Ternyak, secretary of the Congregation for Clergy, will preside at Eucharistic adoration in the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist. The Mass will be celebrated by Cardinal Cormack Murphy-O'Connor of Westminster.

A pilgrimage has been scheduled to the Marian Shrine of Ta'Pinu, on the island of Gozo, on Friday, Oct. 22. Gozo Bishop Nikol Cauchi will welcome the participants, while Cardinal Georg Sterzinsky of Berlin will preside at lauds.

The rosary will then be prayed, which will include a meditation prepared by the Congregation for Clergy, followed by a Mass, presided over by Cardinal Angelo Sodano, Vatican secretary of state, attended by the Christian community of Gozo. Cardinal Castrillón Hoyos will preside over an Act of Consecration to the Blessed Virgin.

The date of the participants' departure has been scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 23.

Plans have also been made for an optional extension of the program, to include visits of a tourist-cultural character from Oct. 23-26.

Registration is obligatory for all participants. Completed forms must be sent to the congress's secretariat, at its headquarters in the Opera Romana Pellegrinaggi in the Vatican (e-mail: clero.malta@orpnet.org) or to the Congregation for Clergy (www.clerus.org).

Registration forms and other details are available on the secretariat's Internet site (www.orpnet.org) as well as that of the Congregation for Clergy.

Cardinal Castrillón Hoyos lamented that "it has not been possible to establish a solidarity fund for those who need financial assistance."

Eucharist Is "Center of the Life of the Church"

Meditation for Corpus Christi

VATICAN CITY, JUNE 13, 2004 (Zenit.org)

Here are excerpts of the address John Paul II delivered today before praying the midday Angelus at St. Peter's Square.

Last Thursday, precisely when celebrating Corpus Christi with the Diocese of Rome, I announced that in the coming month of October, coinciding with the International Eucharistic Congress of Guadalajara, Mexico, a special Year of the Eucharist will begin, which will end in October 2005 with the ordinary assembly of the Synod of Bishops, whose theme will be "The Eucharist: Source and Summit of the Life and Mission of the Church."


From now on, I entrust this new initiative to the Virgin Mary, "Eucharistic woman" (see encyclical "Ecclesia de Eucharistia," Nos. 53-58). May she, who in the Year of the Rosary helped us with her look and her heart to contemplate Christ (see "Rosarium Virginis Mariae," Nos. 10-17), in the Year of the Eucharist make every community grow in faith and love toward the mystery of the Body and Blood of the Lord.

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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.

Test of two faiths [Source: St. Petersburg Times (Florida), 5/16/2004]

A lot of people, it seems, have something to say about a troubled boy and a virgin mother--and about forgiveness and punishment as well. The e-mails started coming to me in the days after Clearwater police arrested Kyle Maskell, an 18-year-old high school student who officers said broke three windows of a glass building at U.S. 19 and Drew Street. If those windows were plain panes of glass, not a lot of people would have cared. But those three windows held the top part of an iridescent, rainbow-hued image that some believe to be the shape of the Virgin Mary. Since the appearance of the image became news in 1996, millions of people have visited the office building, which was bought by Shepherds of Christ Ministries in 1998 and turned into a shrine. Along with sandy beaches, Hooters restaurants and the Church of Scientology, the image became one of Clearwater's most famous icons. As the image became famous, Maskell was quietly growing up without his birth parents. He was learning disabled and living in foster homes. Like many young people, he struggled with self-identity and anger. Clearwater police said in the early morning hours of March 1, Maskell grabbed the slingshot he had bought at a local Wal-Mart and headed out into the night. Police said Maskell happened upon the image. He fired three steel marbles into the top panes of the shape, essentially decapitating the figure. Maskell was not motivated by religion or hate, police said. He simply wanted to vent his anger and garner some infamy. More than two months later, police pulled Maskell from class and arrested him on a charge of felony criminal mischief. A Shepherds of Christ Ministries leader, Rosie Reed, said her group is praying for Maskell. Others have not been as forgiving. They say he should be charged with a hate crime, punished with prison time. I covered the vandalism the day it happened, and I covered Maskell's arrest. In the days after, I received a number of e-mails, some expressing outrage at Maskell, others sympathy for him. Some encouraged punishment. Some encouraged forgiveness.

Here is a sampling of opinions, edited for length:

Teen may be mixed up, but not bad

All right, I know you always want a story, and I know everybody imaginable is mad at Kyle Maskell and so am I, one of his best friends in the world. He really does deserve punishment, but the whole world does not have to know. I got to know this kid, and he really does act like a child. He worked for my dad, and he shows great potential. But really that does not matter, I know. I'm not just saying this: I really love my friend and so do others, and when our teachers do not know the whole story and only know one side of the story, they talk about how much of a bad person he is when, after all, he is a great person. He may be a little mixed up, everyone who knows him will agree, and yes, he deserves punishment. I don't agree with prison; maybe something a little better, but a good punishment. Unlike you or me, he never had parents to punish him, no one who really cared, no one to make a role model of. All I can do is pray that he will be okay. If only you could see the tears that were shed at our school Tuesday morning. It was horrible . . . He really did not do this out of anger of religion. He did this out of hurt.

L. McHenry, Clearwater

Teen's past shouldn't affect charge

Sir, We are shocked that the police chose to not charge Kyle Maskell with a hate crime. Even if he claims to be neutral on all religious issues, it is most obvious he targeted that window for a specific reason. He lived in the neighborhood, and he knew what the window was there for. If it was merely felony criminal mischief, he could have chosen a local home, car or business. However, to commit this crime, Kyle had to walk through rows of chairs that parishioners sit in and shoot over the prominent cross in full display, targeting not just any window in that building but the window that specifically represented the Virgin Mary. Obviously the police are being oversensitive due to Kyle's unfortunate childhood. This can have no bearing on whether he violated the law or not. Do we allow serial killers or other criminals the option to get charged with lesser crimes if they plead an unhappy childhood? No, because there is a point that everyone reaches where they are responsible for their own actions. The article quotes the police as saying that Kyle broke down crying with remorse. If he had been truly remorseful, he would have come forward before he was caught. If crying and saying that you're sorry allows you to get a reduced plea in Clearwater, then we will become a haven for criminal behavior. Have we learned nothing from the effective way that Rudy Giuliani reduced crime in New York? You target every criminal action, even the smallest ones, and you throw the book at the offenders. When the small crimes are addressed, the larger ones diminish. This has nothing to do with our personal religious beliefs. We're not even Catholic. It has to do with the ability for all of us to be able to practice religion in a hate-free environment. It is still not too late to charge Kyle Maskell with a hate crime. We hope that other community leaders will come forward to pressure the Clearwater Police Department to do the right thing.

Freda Drake and Ron Moss, Largo

Virgin Mary would forgive vandalism of window

Hello. In reading this article about the boy accused of damaging the image of Mary, all I could think of was: Who do children always lash out at when in the depths of sadness or anger? Their mother. I wish there was some way to let this child know that Mary would be the first to forgive this act. No doubt the people are upset about this, but if it is truly from God, and if they are truly his followers, this will be forgiven, and much good will come out of it for this young man. May God bless him.

Carla Platt Rockford, Mich.

People of faith: Salvage troubled teen's life

I just read this story and couldn't stop crying. I'm not sure who to feel worse for, the people who came to worship or this troubled young man. What he did was wrong in and of itself, but the greater wrong is that society (or better yet, we) dropped the ball on this kid. I was raised in a Christian home by a mother that would make Jerry Falwell look like a bleeding heart liberal. One of my sixth-grade Sunday School teachers was Anita (believe it or not) Bryant herself. And the one thing that has always stuck in my head is the concept of forgiveness. There is no doubt that this kid will have to live with what he did for the rest of life. I want to remind all Christians (and people of faith) that this is a test of your faith. No pane of glass, regardless of who or what it resembles, is more valuable than a human life. We all need to realize that the real tragedy here is what has happened to Kyle Maskell. The glass can never be replaced, but this young man can be put back together.

Carl Thompson, St. Petersburg

Friend made a mistake in dealing with his emotions

Dear Mr. Tisch, I am Kyle Maskell's best friend and I would like to speak on his behalf. It is true that Kyle is a sweet guy and would never harm anyone. It was a real shock to me. I denied the reality of this situation and had to drive out immediately to find the paper. The paper did not make me believe anything still. I was speechless. I sat myself down to watch the news last night. I started believing the reality. I even viewed the picture you had of him during his court appearance. My hands are shaking as I type this. I am very concerned about him. I feel like the public has very much misunderstood him. He has never had much of an easy life, and there are rare times he actually spoke to me about it. I've known him for five years, and he tries so hard to hide everything he feels. His life was really hard. He lived in a foster home with about 12 other boys his age, none of which were blood-related to him. He never got any attention. When I read the part about him feeling so depressed about his life, I felt disappointed in myself as his best friend. I absolutely love him very much as my close friend, and I felt like all this time if I had taken the time to ask him how he was instead of complaining about my life to him, he would have never taken the course he has. I feel like I let him down. He is a really kind, selfless guy who would listen to others' problems with full attention. He would never hurt anyone. He just never was lucky enough to have the life most people take for granted: a biological family, good communication skills. Also, because he was learning disabled and a couple grade levels below where he should be for his age, he watched his friends move on in life without him, so he became more alone through time. As for the Virgin Mary image, that is probably the main reason this situation is such a controversy. I, for one, never noticed the "Virgin Mary" until this article came out, and I always assumed that the windows of the building were just unclean. So if something like that was supposed to be as obvious as others think, the public is mistaken. It was a coincidence that someone happened to notice it resembled Mary. I do wholeheartedly believe that it was a coincidence. He happened to arrive at the church when he felt upset. Imagine a teenager, struggling to find just his one identity, who approaches a church. He would be asking God why his life is like the way it is, as it is a natural questioning of belief from anyone in need of an answer. Angry and disappointed, he made a mistake and "beheaded" the "Virgin Mary." He harmed no one though. When someone is that upset, they will not think straight. And yes, he is 18. To many, that age is considered adult. But many understand that at this age, no one's mind is fully developed yet, and emotions are not as controlled as people hope they would be. I ask everyone this: Have you ever felt so upset about something that you did or said something you regret? I know he meant no harm. Please let him know all his friends send love out to him. We are all worried about him. This is my comment to the situation, and all I feel I could do for him right now, my best friend. I say all this in hopes to speak up for the kindest guy I know in my life.

Victoria Huynh, Clearwater

Maria Julia Costello visited the Clearwater Virgin Mary image in 2000 because of its resemblance to another image in Mexico.

Will the EU flag now change to reflect the number of newcomers? [Source: The Times (London), 5/11/2004]

The flag of the European Union is based upon the flag of the Council of Europe which, in 1953, had 15 members. After considering many proposals for flag designs, the council adopted the circle of gold stars on a blue background. The original intention was that each member of the council would be represented by a star on the flag. However, the council finally agreed that the number of stars should be 12, and that even if new states joined it, the number of stars would remain the same. The European Union has inherited the flag of the Council of Europe and has continued to recognise the convention that the number of stars should not be increased to represent the number of states in the Union.

Russ Jones, Rugby

The flag was designed by Gerard Slevin, Ireland's longest-serving Chief Herald to date, his design having been selected by the Council of Europe at Strasbourg in 1954. Slevin's aim was "to encapsulate graphically the ideal of an evolving Europe over the course of time. In heraldry, the circle is symbolic of perfection and entirety, capturing the European ideal of unity and harmony, while the clock symbolises the passage of time."

The Rev Sandra Pragnell, Dublin

The number 12 is a symbol of cosmic order and salvation. It is the number of the signs of the zodiac, the hours on a clock face, the months of the year, the Christian apostles, the knights of the Round Table, and the lictors of Rome. Five-pointed stars represent aspiration and education. Gold is the colour of the Sun, and symbolises glory and enlightenment. Blue is the colour of the sky, and symbolises the Virgin Mary, truth, and the intellect. Arranged in a circlet, a dozen stars represent the constellation of Corona, and are seen as a crown in paintings of the Virgin Mary as Stella Maris, to signify royalty and thus the structures of government (as in a Round Table). All this symbolism was consciously adopted in the design of 12 golden stars on a sky-blue background for the flag of the European Union. In short, the symbols of the flag are purely metaphorical.

Paul Murdin, Royal Astronomical Society, London W1

CHURCH GIVEN A UNIQUE BUST OF MADONNA. [Source: Daily News (New York), 5/9/2004]

A Catholic church in Bedford-Stuyvesant has received what it sees as the best possible Mother's Day gift: a unique sculpture of the mother of Jesus Christ. In a simple ceremony last Thursday, Our Lady of Victory Church was given a bust of the Black Madonna--a replica of the Virgin Mary cast with a black patina from the Vatican's original mold of Michelangelo's "Pieta." The 27-inch high, 67-pound, $25,000 work of art was given to the church by philanthropist James Grau, his wife Elizabeth Trump Grau - the sister of billionaire developer Donald Trump - and David Newren. Newren is president of New Renaissance Art, a California firm specializing in fine works of art. It produced the Black Madonna under license with the Vatican Treasury Museum. "How wonderful it is, that this happens in the month of May when we not only celebrate the mother of Jesus, but our own mothers," said Our Lady of Victory pastor the Rev. Martin Carter. The current congregation at the 135-year-old church is predominantly black, and Carter has decorated the exterior of the Throop Ave. house of worship with black images of the Virgin Mary and the baby Jesus, as well as Jesus on the cross. This was not lost on James Grau, a longtime supporter of the nearby Bedford-Stuyvesant Restoration Corp., as he considered where to donate the bust. "When I heard black, and I heard Madonna, it was obvious," said Grau. "You know you think of a place to help, of where to put it, and to me, the choice is crystal clear." In the past, Grau noted, the surrounding Bed-Stuy community was "a hellhole, riddled with drugs and crime." Now that it has improved and keeps improving, he said, the Black Madonna's place in the community will be a plus. His wife agreed, calling the landmark Our Lady of Victory "such a beautiful church," and adding that she was "very happy" with its choice as the recipient of the bust. A grateful Carter noted that his church's new Black Madonna "follows in the footsteps of the many Black Madonnas of Russia, Our Lady of Hurezi, Our Lady of Le Puy, Our Lady of Czestochowa, and many others in the ... tradition of Black Madonnas in the Catholic Church."

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