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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.
To celebrate the month of September 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 September.
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A section on Marian Spiritualities has been added to our Resources index. The latest addition was a paper by Fr. Eamon Carroll on The Marian Spirituality of Carmelites. Expect more articles to follow.
A section on international stamps with images of Mary has also been added to our Resources index. The latest updated was United States. 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 also revised our answer to a reader's question: Can you tell me about a painting of the Virgin Mary with a white cord full of knots?
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Fr. Myles P. Murphy has been appointed Administrator of St. Michael's Parish on West 34th Street in New York City. There will be a mass of welcome, offered by Auxiliary Bishop, Robert Brucato, followed by a reception on September 26, 2004 at 1:00 p.m. For more information call 212-563-2575. Fr. Murphy is also scheduled to speak in October at the ESBVM-USA meeting on the Marian thought of Bishop Sheen.
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Acts of Kindness: Posters by John Bach
A retrospective of 25 posters designed for The Marian Library Gallery Art Exhibitions over the past 15 years will be exhibited at the Marian Library through October 10, 2004. All works are transparent watercolors. 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 ScheduleIMRI courses for the Fall 2004 semester will commence on October 18. The course schedule through Fall 2005 is now available.
Also, Michael Duricy is scheduled to facilitate an on-line course on Mary geared to catechists which will be offered through U.D.'s Institute for Pastoral Initiatives. The course will run from October 17 - November 20. Registration for this course ends October 12. For more information call 937-229-4654 or click into VLCFF.
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Ecumenical Society of the Blessed Virgin Mary - United States meeting
The ESBVM-USA will meet at Fordham University in New York City on October 2, 2004. Fr. Myles Murphy and Dr. Virginia Kimball, both IMRI graduates, will be among the featured speakers. For more information, click into http://msa62.tripod.com/esbvm or www.esbvm.org. You may also contact their President, Bill Ryon, by phone at 703-451-7062 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Click this link for a list of all of the current Marian Events by geographical position.
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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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MARY ENCOURAGES US TO LIVEN FAITH IN CHRIST OUR SAVIOR
VATICAN CITY, SEP 11, 2004 (VIS)
Made public today was a message from the Holy Father to Bishop Lucio Soravito de Franceschi from Adria-Rovigo, Italy, on the occasion of the 17th International Meeting on Mariology which is taking place in Rovigo September 10 to 12.
The meeting, promoted by the Congregation of the Reparation Servants of Mary commemorates the 50 anniversary of the coronation of the image of Our Lady of Sorrows in Rovigo. "The theme, 'Our Lady's gaze on the modern world,' invites us to consider the happy and distressing events of our age through the Virgin's eyes," writes the Pope in the message dated September 8, feast of the Nativity of Our Lady.
"Mary, with a heart pierced by a sword of sorrow," says John Paul II, "encourages us to liven our faith in the One Who saved us, shedding His precious blood for all of mankind ... Her maternal love inspires us to open our hearts to the suffering of others, especially those who are searching for valid answers to the profound questions of life."
MESS/OUR LADY SORROWS/SORAVITO VIS 040913 (190)
From ZenitMary's Sorrows a Source of Consolation, Says John Paul II
Encouragement for Those Facing Daily Struggles
VATICAN CITY, SEPT. 15, 2004 (Zenit.org)
John Paul II says that the sorrows of the Blessed Virgin Mary are a source of inspiration and consolation for believers facing the difficulties of everyday life. The Pope made this observation today to young people, the sick and newlyweds who were among the crowd of 10,000 at the general audience in St. Peter's Square. Before bidding the crowd farewell, the Holy Father recalled that today the Church was honoring the memory of the sorrowful Blessed Mother "who with faith stayed next to Jesus' cross."
"My hope is that you will find in her consolation and support to overcome all the obstacles of your daily life," he said.
Meanwhile, Father Stefano De Fiores, professor of Mariology at several pontifical universities, explained on Vatican Radio that the liturgical memorial of the Our Lady of Sorrows is much cherished by Catholics because "people identify with Mary and see in her the expression of their pain."
"However, it is salvific, not desperate, pain--a pain that, despite the harshness of the suffering, is mitigated by faith in the Resurrection, as Mary precedes others in faith," the theologian said.
Quoting St. Bernard, Father De Fiores explained that one can speak of the "martyrdom of the spirit" of the Blessed Virgin, as the elderly Simeon predicted in the Gospel.
"Mary is on the side of Jesus, she suffers with him; therefore, she participated without a doubt in the spirit--with a spiritual martyrdom--in his sufferings, especially in the crucifixion," the priest said.
Yet, he added, "Mary's life was not always a martyrdom, as she also had moments of joy, moments of contemplation."
"We do not have to yield to 'dolorousness': Dolorousness is not Christianity. Christianity consists in what Jesus did, to whom his Mother also united herself: the transformation of the harshest pain, the most ignominious, into an experience of salvation," Father De Fiores said.
"This is the Gospel of suffering," he added, "the joyful news that even loneliness or the worst moments the human psyche can experience can be transformed into acts of faith, hope and love."
ZE04091505On Feast of the Name of Mary
"May Our Lady Help Catholic Action"
CASTEL GANDOLFO, Italy, SEPT. 12, 2004 (Zenit.org)
Here is a translation of the beginning of the address John Paul II delivered today before praying the midday Angelus with crowds gathered at the papal summer residence.
According to an old tradition, today is celebrated the feast of the Name of Mary. Linked indissolubly to that of Jesus, this name is the dearest for Christians, because it reminds all of our common Mother. To her the dying Jesus entrusted all as children. May Mary watch over humanity at this time marked by overwhelming explosions of violence. May she especially watch over the new generations, desirous of building a future of hope for all.
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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.
Nature Notes [Source: The Times (London), 8/6/2004]
LADYBIRDS are swarming in the countryside, and more are coming in from the Continent. The commonest species is the seven-spot ladybird, which has three and a half spots on each of its scarlet wing-cases. This is because the spot that one sees in the middle of its back when its wings are closed is divided between the two wing-cases, and splits when it lifts its wings. The other common ladybird is the slightly smaller two-spot. Most of these are red with black spots, but some are black with red spots. Ladybirds feed on aphids, a family which includes greenfly and blackfly. Ladybird larvae also eat aphids. Between them, they consume vast quantities of these garden pests. Ladybirds get their name because their scarlet backs were associated with the red cloak that the Virgin Mary was often portrayed as wearing in medieval times. Crane flies, or daddy-long-legs, are flying about in bumbling fashion with their long legs dangling. They often stumble into houses. They have emerged from the earth, where their larvae, called leather-jackets, feed on the roots of plants. Daddy-longlegs are sometimes pursued by wasps, who bite off their gauzy wings before eating them.
Is this a Dacre I see before me, promoting theatrical blasphemy? [Source: The Times (London), 8/5/2004]
While Paul Dacre skillfully sets the world to rights editing the Daily Mail, his son is about to stir up some old-fashioned outrage at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. James Dacre, 19, who has just completed two years studying physics at Magdalene, Cambridge, is directing Five Visions of the Faithful, a play which depicts the Virgin Mary as a prostitute and Jesus as an emotional wreck.
Young Dacre seems determined to make his mark on the dramatic scene. He has already directed Howard Brenton's disturbing play Christie in Love, about the serial killer John Reginald Christie. He also scored a notable coup by interviewing Nicholas Hytner, the new artistic director of the National Theatre, for the student paper Varsity. Now Dacre Jr is tackling a play--his first outside the cosy confines of the Fens--which would surely set lips quivering and pens scratching at his father's newspaper.
Five Visions of the Faithful, a new play by the London playwright Torben Betts, focuses on transgressions of the seven deadly sins and Ten Commandments in modern life. It includes a sequence where businessmen solicit teenage girls in a shower. Most controversial will be the fourth of the play's five scenes, in which the Virgin Mary--depicted as an Irish prostitute--is found soliciting men by a cash machine and discussing the sexual abuse she has faced. At the end of the scene she and other characters meet the reincarnated Jesus, presented as a sad figure, covered in tattoos and, according to the production's press material, "desperately in need of a hug from his mam." I can't wait to read the review in the Daily Mail.
Doomsday cult wins federal cash [Source: The Australian, 8/3/3004]
A DOOMSDAY cult led by a self-proclaimed prophet who has been banned by the Vatican has secured $332,000 from the Howard Government to run a private school since 1996. William "Little Pebble" Kamm has previously predicted a tsunami would devastate Australia's east cost and believes his Order of St Charbel converts in NSW, Victoria and South Australia will survive the coming apocalypse after he is appointed as the last pope. But first, the former bank worker who claims he is sent messages by the Virgin Mary is busy building his controversial religious order--which recently secured a $75,000 federal grant for capital works at Saint Joseph's School in Cambewarra, near Nowra, on the NSW south coast.
Mr Kamm was denounced by the then Archbishop of Melbourne George Pell in 1997, after a report found Mr Kamm asked female devotees to bear his children through "mystical marriages," claiming he possessed the "Holy Seed" to breed a new race. NSW Education Minister Andrew Refshauge confirmed yesterday that child protection authorities would be asked to review Saint Joseph's registration. However, federal Education Minister Brendan Nelson said he was powerless to review funding for the religious order because the school was accredited by NSW.
The Howard Government had granted the school $332,000 in federal funding and plans to increase the grants from $3527 per student next year, rising by an extra $1107 by 2008. Federal Opposition education spokeswoman Jenny Macklin said: "The Howard Government likes to talk about accountability but refuses to take responsibility for which schools it funds." Funding for the Order of St Charbel school has raised concern in Catholic circles, amid fears followers are building bunkers in preparation to form a "Papal guard" to protect Little Pebble.
Following inquiries by The Australian, the NSW Board of Studies confirmed yesterday that child protection agencies would be contacted to review the school's registration following recent changes to the legislation and inspections last year that granted an extension of St Joseph's license. "I want to be assured that all students at the school are being taught in a safe environment. We will be waiting for a report back from the Board of Studies," Dr Refshauge said.
St Joseph's School is inside the Order of St Charbel's fenced compound and currently teaches 31 students from kindergarten to Year 6. Principal David Williams said yesterday the school would not exist without federal funding. While parents "backed" Little Pebble, Mr Williams said the school operated independently from the Church's moderator--who has an office in the same compound. "Our fees are very low--$200 per year," he said. "We do it very tough here." Outside the school yesterday a spokesman said: "This isn't Waco. We are just people. We've had abduction attempts from here. We've got a lot of loonies around here. There are a lot more loonies out there than there are in here."
A woman's place is to wait and listen, says the Vatican [Source: The Observer, 8/1/2004]
THE Vatican yesterday depicted what it claimed were women's characteristic traits: 'Listening, welcoming, humility, faithfulness, praise and waiting.' In its most important statement on the role of women in almost a decade, the Roman Catholic Church said these virtues of the Virgin Mary were ones that women displayed 'with particular intensity and naturalness.' The 37-page statement, published in full yesterday, was written by the Pope's top theologian, Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger.
As a statement of official doctrine, it would have been read, and very likely amended, by the Pope himself before publication. The document, which will prompt a fierce debate about the attributes of women, added: 'Although a certain type of feminist rhetoric makes demands "for ourselves," women preserve the deep intuition of the goodness in their lives of those actions that elicit life, and contribute to the growth and protection (of others). This intuition is linked to women's physical capacity to give life. Whether lived out or remaining potential, this capacity is a reality that structures the female personality in a profound way.'
In his 'Letter to the Bishops of the Catholic Church on the Collaboration of Men and Women in the Church and in the World,' Ratzinger takes aim at 'currents of thought that are often at variance with the authentic advancement of women.' Chief among these is a tendency to 'emphasize strongly conditions of subordination in order to give rise to antagonism.' It implied that 'women, in order to be themselves, must make themselves the adversaries of men.' Such confrontational thinking was 'leading to harmful confusion ... which has its most immediate and lethal effects in the structure of the family.'
Gender war also encouraged a perilous blurring of the distinctions. 'To avoid the domination of one sex or the other, their differences tend to be denied, viewed as mere effects of historical and cultural conditioning.' Such a view ignored qualities that arose from a woman's unique ability to give birth. This 'allows her to acquire maturity very quickly, and gives a sense of the seriousness of life and of its responsibilities. A sense and a respect for what is concrete develop in her, opposed to abstractions which are so often fatal for the existence of individuals and society,' says the first high-level pronouncement on gender issues since the Pope's 1995 'Letter to Women.'
Ratzinger uses the document to argue that, because they have something unique to contribute, 'women should be present in the world of work and in the organization of society.' The comments drew a mixed reaction from feminists and women writers. Erin Pizzey, founder of the international women's refuge movement, said: 'I don't think the Catholic Church, whose priests and bishops cannot marry, is in a position to make such statements. It is one of the most emotionally illiterate organizations I know, and it needs to put its own house in order first.'
But Catherine Pepinster, editor of Catholic paper The Tablet, said the comments would resonate with many women. 'For feminists to rubbish it is a knee-jerk response. It does make a distinction between the sexes, but it also points out that women have a big role to play in society.' Tory MP Ann Widdecombe said that the statement seemed to her a long-overdue assessment of women's roles. 'For those of us involved in the women's movement of the Seventies, our aim was to give us equal opportunities. It wasn't that we would become men. Instead of civilising the world, what we have done is create a ladette [sic] culture. It's true we have certain characteristics that we can bring to the world that are valuable, and shouldn't be submerged.'
However, combining work and family has 'characteristics different from those in the case of men', says the document, which argues for a 'just valuing of the work of women within the family.' Ratzinger does not say how this is to be done, but it is clear he sees it as a way of encouraging women to spend as much time as possible in the home.
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