Liturgical Season 10/18/04 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 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.

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New Resources

A section on Marian Dogmas has been added to our Resources index.  The latest addition was The Assumption.  Expect more articles to follow.

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 A New Feminism.  Expect more articles to follow.

We have also revised a page on Black Madonnas.

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  News from the Marian Library

MSA Call for Papers

The next meeting of the Mariological Society of America will take place at the Marie Joseph Spiritual Center in Biddeford, Maine, May 18-22, 2005.  The theme will be "Mary, Eschatological Icon of the Church."

"Mary, Eschatological Icon of the Church" is the title of a section of the Catechism of the Catholic Church (972) and also of an address of Pope John Paul II given on March 21, 2001.  This MSA program will develop the following: Mary as Type of the Church, as Image of Freedom, as Model for the Church's Identity and Mission; the Assumption as Human Destiny and Anticipation of the Resurrection; Mary's Queenship and Role as Intercessor.

Papers are welcome which explore these images in Scripture, the Christian spiritual tradition, art and iconography, classical and contemporary theology.  Submit a 500 word proposal which should include a tentative title and a description of the thesis.  If you are proposing a panel, please include a list of the participants (no more than 3) and a description of each person's role.  Proposals must be submitted to MSA Secretariat (Marian Library) by December 1, 2004.

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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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International Marian Research Institute Course Schedule

IMRI courses for the Fall 2004 semester commenced on October 18.  The course schedule through Fall 2005 is now available.

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Marian Events

New Marianist Art Work

Gallery Saint John in Dayton, Ohio will be showing works by Joe Barrish, Chris Conlon, John Lemker, Mel Meyer, Don Smith, and Brian Zampier through November 21, 2004.  Gallery hours are Noon-4 p.m. Wednesday thru Sunday.  Free and open to the public.  For more information call 937-320-5405.

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

New Book on Mary

Novalis held a 'book launch' in Montreal on October 15 for Mary, The First Disciple: A Guide for transforming Today's Church, a book written by Sr. Marie Azzarello, CND.  Members of our Marian Institute have shown interest and encouragement for this project.  For example, Fr. Bert Buby, SM, read the chapters as they were developed.  We encourage our readers to look for it.



The 48th International Eucharistic Congress, which opened with a solemn Eucharistic liturgy the evening of October 10 in Guadalajara, Mexico, began six days of formal meetings yesterday morning in the presence of Cardinals Juan Sandoval Iniguez, archbishop of Guadalajara and Josef Tomko, the Holy Father's legate for this event, and thousands of delegates from throughout the world. The theme of the congress is: "The Eucharist: Light and Life of the new Millennium."

Each day starts with a plenary session and has a specific theme: Monday, October 11 was dedicated to "We want to see your face, Oh Lord!"; Tuesday: "Eucharist, Viaticum on the Journey, Accompanies Our Pilgrimage"; Wednesday: "Eucharist, Mystery of Communion and Mission"; Thursday: "Eucharist, Center of Church Life"; Friday: "Eucharist, Exigency and Model of Sharing"; Saturday: "Eucharist, Fount of Evangelization."

At the start of the congress, special reports were given on the ecclesial importance of the Eucharist on each of the continents. The program features perpetual Eucharistic adoration at designated sites of adoration, recitation of the rosary in various pastoral centers in October 12, and a solemn procession with the Most Holy Sacrament on the streets of Guadalajara and a blessing in Liberation Square in the historical center of the city on October 14.

Today, October 12 there will be a pilgrimage to the shrine of Our Lady of Zapopan in Guadalajara, starting at 6 a.m. local time and concluding with Mass at 10 a.m.

The Eucharistic Congress will close in Mexico on Sunday, October 17, with Mass at 10 .m. in Jalisco Stadium. Simultaneously there will be a television linkup with Rome and St. Peter's Square during which time Pope John Paul will open the Year of the Eucharist.


From Zenit

On the Origin and Meaning of the Rosary

A Powerful Prayer, Says Archbishop Sorrentino

VATICAN CITY, OCT. 12, 2004 (Zenit.org)

The rosary is an "intensely contemplative" and powerful prayer with a long history, says a Vatican aide.

"Personally, I have seen miracles with the rediscovery of this prayer," said Archbishop Domenico Sorrentino, secretary of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Sacraments, in an interview on Vatican Radio.

He recalled encountering "people who have found in this prayer food for the soul and a reason for conversion."

At last Wednesday's general audience, John Paul II invited the faithful in this "month of the rosary" to make the Marian devotion "your daily prayer."

The recitation of the rosary began "in a very modest way in the first centuries of the second millennium," Archbishop Sorrentino said in his interview.

"At that time, the Psalms were recited in their liturgical organization, the Psalter with lauds and vespers, but there were many who could not pray ... in Latin, and the Psalms then began to be replaced by the 'Pater' and 'Ave' prayers, which little by little were given a certain organization that varied according to circumstances," the archbishop explained.

"Then, gradually, meditation of the mysteries was added," he continued. "The prayer grew until it took on the typical form that we are used to reciting, and this occurred in particular with St. Pius V, when he instituted the feast of Our Lady of the Rosary, which was then linked to a special historical circumstance: the Christian victory over the Ottoman menace."

"The Pope believed that this victory was due to the insistent prayer of Christians, through the intercession of the Mother of God," Archbishop Sorrentino noted.

Since then, the rosary "has been recited by the Christian community following this scheme, until John Paul II, two years ago, with the Year of the Rosary," altered this prayer, "focusing more on its Christological and biblical aspect, in particular, by adding the 'mysteries of light,'" the archbishop said.

"If it is well understood," it "is a prayer that says much," he said. The rosary is intensely "contemplative. The repetition, which often from a distance might seem to be mechanical, in fact serves as a breath of the soul which, gazing on Jesus Christ, assumes a contemplative attitude through Mary's eyes and heart."

If understood from this perspective, one can appreciate how this Marian prayer "can really give tone to the Christian spirit, it can help a Christian in his daily living to remain well anchored in the mystery of our salvation, especially in Jesus Christ, who is the heart, the center of the life of a Christian," the prelate said.

"Sadly, sometimes this prayer is recited in the least of its possibilities," he said. "It would be good if the People of God became conscious of the potential of this prayer by following closely the suggestions made by the Pope."


New Places of Christian Worship to Arise in Qatar

A Milestone Not Seen Since the 7th Century

DOHA, Qatar, OCT. 12, 2004 (Zenit.org)

The Catholic community welcomed the concession of land in the emirate of Qatar, where a church dedicated to Our Lady of the Rosary will soon be built.

The laying of the first stone took place last Thursday, on the feast of Our Lady of the Rosary. In this Arab state, places for Christian worships have not been built since the seventh century.

The church will be built on land donated by the emir of Qatar, in a residential district of the capital, Doha. The emir has also donated land to Anglicans, Copts, Orthodox and Protestants to build their own churches.

The Parish of St. Mary of the Rosary, which will administer the future church, has about 48,000 faithful -- immigrants who came to the emirate for jobs. The birth of the Catholic mission in Qatar dates back to 1956.

Mass is currently celebrated in the Latin, Syro-Malabar and Syro-Malankara rites, and in various languages, including Arabic, English, Italian, Urdu, Tagalog and Tamil.

"We are very happy," said Bishop Bernardo Gremoli, apostolic vicar of Arabia, who has been on a pastoral visit to the vicariate in recent days.

"For years we have been waiting for this moment: the authorization to build a church. There is great enthusiasm in the Catholic community," he said.

On Wednesday, Archbishop Giuseppe De Andrea, papal nuncio in Kuwait, told the missionary agency Fides: "This is a historic moment, an event of grace for the Church in this part of the world."

"Since Qatar established diplomatic relations with the Holy See in 2003, relations have been cordial," he said. "The emir donated the land to the Catholic Church precisely during the Year of the Rosary; this is why the new church will be dedicated to the Virgin of the Rosary."

Situated in the Arabic peninsula, the emirate of Qatar has just under 800,000 inhabitants, most of whom are Muslims. Its population is made up in general of Arab Bedouins, as well as immigrant workers from nearby Arab states and from Iran, Pakistan, India and the Philippines.

Qatar is a member of the United Nations and of the Arab League. Since June 27, 1995, the emir is the Sheikh Hamad Bin Khalifa Al-Thani.

Last Nov. 18, the Holy See and Qatar announced the establishment of official diplomatic relations. At that time, ZENIT learned that the agreement made provision for the Qatar government to put one or several plots of land at the disposition of the Catholic Church for the building of churches, according to the needs of the faithful.

Although Islam is the majority religion, the country has some 60,000 Catholic immigrants, especially from the Philippines and India.

Father Justo Lacunza Balda, the director of the Pontifical Institute of Arab and Islamic Studies, told Vatican Radio: "These new Christian places, with an inter-confessional dimension, have, in fact, two profound meanings. Above all, they represent a dimension of inter-religious and ecumenical dialogue among the Churches and, in particular, among the Catholics, Orthodox, Protestants and Anglicans."

There is also "profound meaning linked to the inter-religious and cultural dialogue in a country where the official religion is Islam," he said. This suggests the "need for dialogue" through "reciprocal knowledge and learning."

4 Million Join in Pilgrimage to Virgin Mary

Procession to Zapopan Held in Context of Eucharistic Congress

ZAPOPAN, Mexico, OCT. 13, 2004 (Zenit.org)

More than 4 million people expressed their devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary in this city near Guadalajara by participating in a 5-kilometer pilgrimage.

The event was capped Tuesday by a solemn concelebrated Mass in the Basilica of Our Lady of Zapopan, presided over by Cardinal Juan Sandoval ═˝iguez, archbishop of Guadalajara. He was accompanied by dozens of cardinals.

Attendance at the celebration in Zapopan, which combined faith with pre-Hispanic traditions, went beyond all expectations.

The celebration began Monday with a Mass presided over by the archbishop of Sao Paulo, Cardinal Clßudio Hummes. It was followed by a serenade and a nocturnal vigil of Mary's image.

Tuesday's pilgrimage began at 6 a.m. After a four-hour walk from the Cathedral of Guadalajara to the Basilica of Zapopan, a Mass was celebrated followed by a blessing of the faithful with the image of the Blessed Virgin.

Guadalajara, Mexico's third largest city, came to a standstill during the pilgrimage, but calm and order reigned.

Hundreds of thousand completed the pilgrimage, while others--who began arriving at dawn--crowded into the Americas Square, in front of the basilica of Zapopan, to attend the Mass.

Every year, on Oct. 12, more than 2 million faithful usually venerate the Virgin of Zapopan. Preliminary reports estimated that twice that number flocked to the basilica or took part in the procession Tuesday.


Rosary Fad Prompts an Effort at Catechesis

Bishops Produce a Leaflet to Go Beyond the Fashion Craze

LONDON, OCT. 15, 2004 (Zenit.org)

The bishops' conference of England and Wales has issued an leaflet in response to the fashion trend among young people for wearing rosaries as necklaces and bracelets.

The Liturgy Office of the bishops' Department for Christian Life and Worship said that the wearing of rosary beads has become hugely popular this year, with jewelery shops reporting record sales.

"Apparently the rosary has recently joined the crucifix as a desirable secular fashion accessory," said Father Allen Morris, secretary of the department. "However, unlike the crucifix, it is generally available only from religious suppliers rather than high street jewelers."

He added: "Some of these suppliers have expressed concern that those buying them should know something of the religious significance of the rosary. To that end, the Liturgy Office has prepared a simple two-sided A5 sheet in order that those so minded might make them freely available, even placing one in the bag with the rosary."

Kristina Cooper, editor of the Catholic Charismatic Renewal magazine Good News, has given many rosaries to young people and welcomed the leaflet.

"I live on a council estate in South London and many teen-agers there are really interested in the rosary," Cooper said. "When someone asks me for one I explain what it is for and ask them to show me that they have learnt the Our Father before I give them one.

"If they ask for a second one, depending on the person, I ask them to tell me a good deed they have done, or teach them the Hail Mary," Cooper said.

While some observers worry about a profanation of religious items, Cooper sees a positive side to the phenomenon.

"This fashion is a great opportunity for evangelization. I am very pleased to hear about this leaflet," she said. "I find the rosary is a very useful instrument for catechizing people who have never been to church."

The leaflet can be accessed at www.catholic-ew.org.uk/faith/celebrating/rosary2.htm.

Code: ZE04101525

Legacy of Founder of Crusaders of St. Mary

Institutes Recall Father Thomas Morales and His Vision

ROME, OCT. 15, 2004 (Zenit.org)

Oct. 1 marked the 10th anniversary of the death of Father Thomas Morales, founder of the secular institutes of the Crusaders of St. Mary. To mark the event, the institutes organized an international congress last week in Madrid, Spain.

The Jesuit priest, whose cause for canonization is under way, also founded the Homes of St. Mary marriage movement and the Militia of St. Mary youth movement, present in the United States, Ireland, Spain, Germany and Latin America.

Before the congress in Spain, ZENIT interviewed Beatriz de Ancos, a St. Mary's crusader, one of the speakers at the congress.

Q: You call your founder a "prophet of our time." Why?

De Ancos: Father Thomas Morales is considered a prophet of our time because he anticipated by 20 years the teachings of the Second Vatican Council, specifically two documents: "Apostolicam Actuositatem" and "Lumen Gentium."

From the start of his apostolic activities, he began to impress, with a missionary emphasis, the laity to whom he gave the series of Spiritual Exercises.

That missionary emphasis consists in making the lay person realize his responsibility and mission in the Church, and the need to live his baptism in a consistent way, understanding that there are many sectors and temporal realities within society that no other member of the Church will be able to evangelize from within as the lay person can.

Q: Ten years after the founder's death, what are the fundamental aspects of the charism?

De Ancos: What characterizes us is the determination for holiness without leaving the world, as contemplatives in action amid a multiplicity of activities--a holiness which is, moreover, apostolic and Marian. Marian because we always live with the sweet name of Mary in our hearts and we imitate her life from the "Let it be done unto me" of the Incarnation to the "being" at the foot of the cross. Apostolic because we live the faith with a militant sense within the Church, acting and offering ourselves for Christ when the circumstances require it.

Q: What does it mean to be a contemplative in action?

De Ancos: It is a way of living the Gospel which requires an intense and strong interior life, but this contemplation is lived in the midst of temporal realities in which the lay person is immersed.

In a word, it is that with which St. Ignatius concludes the Exercises "to love and serve in everything," because our life is to love by serving all those who cross our path and to serve by loving with the heart of Christ. When we serve others we are putting contemplation into practice.

Q: How did Father Morales live, and ask others to live, the change brought by Vatican II?

De Ancos: He took up the different appeals of the Popes during the second half of the 20th century, but essentially John Paul II's appeal during his visit to Javier in 1982, when he said: "A Catholic who becomes conscious of his faith becomes a missionary."

Father Morales worked and gave his all in this, in making us all conscious of our faith and of our missionary responsibility acquired in baptism.

Father Morales was a loyal son of the Church and he taught us to love her. He lived the whole of the papal magisterium with great fidelity. The documents of Vatican Council II are so rich that we are still putting into practice all these teachings. He made them his life and made others live them.

He urged us to read the documents of the Church carefully, analyzing them, commenting on them in discussions and holding study circles and talks on them.

In the study circles, not only did we focus on those materials or the texts we had read, but examples were also given of how they were lived. Theory and practice.

When he directed a study circle, or gave an apostolic commission, Father Morales made time for comments at the following session relating to the different apostolic experiences on what had been proposed.

Not only did he give formation in action, but also in judgment. The endeavor is to give integral formation: intellectual formation, but also formation of the will and emotions, because everything is united in the person.

Q: Father Morales was known for being exacting. How did this fit in with the charism developed specifically toward young people?

De Ancos: Our charism is characterized by forming minorities, leaders, Catholic militants. Young people have much wealth within, a great capacity to give themselves. But one must know how to draw out their generosity and courage.

In general, it is the most generous young people who understand that exigency: that energy that youth has within must be channeled. It is necessary to discover and to help others discover the hero we all bear within.

The world offers us many types of heroes, but the hero that Father Morales presented, and that we continue to present from our charism, is the saint. It is not a question of exacting for the sake of exacting.

There must always be a reason that the young person must understand and, above all, it must be done with love, without ever demanding that which is beyond the other's strength.

Q: To work with small groups might be seem as elitism?

De Ancos: Father Morales was a loyal son of St. Ignatius, the one who said at the Sorbonne in Paris: "If I win over Xavier, Xavier will win the world for me," referring to St. Francis Xavier, today patron of the missions.

And Father Morales translates this lesson to our century, seeing the effectiveness of a few. He said "a minority forged in exigency and fidelity, firm and consequent in the faith, can transform the world. In university chairs, the press, politics, the army, and even in seminaries, it would Christianize society, it would give back to man his dignity threatened by totalitarian ideologies or corrupt customs. Their action would ensure the vitality of Catholicism throughout the millennia."

Q: If your commitment must be centered on small groups, how have the massive Vigils of Mary Immaculate arisen, held every year in different cities of Spain and other countries where you come together, or the mass Dawn Rosaries in the month of May, two initiatives promoted by you?

De Ancos: Because the Gospel is for all. Father Morales used to say: "All must be taken care of, but cultivate small groups." He was convinced that if he formed a small group he would reach the whole world, because that minority would be able to evangelize those around them.

Moreover, the Marian campaigns have always been a means of formation of Catholic militants, offering oneself for Christ, working generously to make love of the Virgin and the Gospel known to others. They are great campaigns to reach all, but at the same time they serve for formation, they have that double aspect.

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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.

Showering a Madonna With Affection, Not Devotion [Source: New York Times, 9/5/2004]

Today, few remnants survive of the little Italian neighborhood that once flourished in the section of the East Village bounded by Eighth Street, 14th Street, Avenue A and Second Avenue: Lanza's restaurant, Veniero's Pastry Shop, De Robertis Pasticceria--and not much more. But for the first several decades of the 20th century, the neighborhood was not only dense with Sicilian immigrants, it also had its own protector. Every year on her feast day, Sept. 8, the Black Madonna of Tindari was paraded through the narrow streets. From their windows, people tossed down dollar bills that were pinned to a ribbon on the statue, a 58-inch-tall likeness of the Virgin Mary whose permanent home was in a tiny storefront shrine at 447 East 13th Street.

The first procession, organized by immigrants from the region around the Sicilian village of Tindari, was held in 1905. But as the Sicilians moved away, veneration of the Black Madonna slipped into the gauzy past. But though the shrine that housed her no longer exists, she has not lost her following. On Wednesday, a group of scholars, writers, artists and musicians who are mostly Italian but not necessarily regular churchgoers will use the feast day to gather at the former shrine, now a gay bar called the Phoenix. The celebration may include poetry, music and socializing, but will not be strictly religious, according to its organizer, Joseph Sciorra, an assistant director of the John D. Calandra Italian American Institute at the City University of New York.

Mary Chinnici, a devotee of the Black Madonna who used to come in from New Jersey with her mother to visit the statue, became its caretaker when the shrine was shuttered in 1987. The statue, which will not be making the trip to Manhattan for the celebration, now resides in her son's home in Mullica Hill, in southern New Jersey, surrounded by pictures of Catholic saints, plants, electric candles and a crucifix.

The origin of Black Madonnas are the subject of much scholarly debate. Some believe they are Christianized versions of pagan fertility goddesses that were occasionally depicted as black. Others say that Black Madonna statues were simply darkened by years of soot, while still others say the images owe their darkness to Byzantine traditions. Whatever her roots, scholarly and public interest in Black Madonnas has blossomed over the last decade. Mr. Sciorra, who has done research on the Black Madonna of Tindari, has assembled an informal group of scholars and artists who see Black Madonnas as symbols of feminine strength, racial harmony and spiritual power.

Stephanie Romeo, a photo researcher, novelist and self-described postmodern Catholic who plans to attend the gathering on Wednesday, believes that the Black Madonna connects her with her Sicilian peasant ancestors. To her, the icon represents a tradition of spirituality rooted in folklore, empowered by female essence, distrustful of clergy and unafraid of racial difference. "I look at her," she said, "and I know that I am not alone." PETER DUFFY

SOMETHING TO DECLARE [Source: The Independent (London), 9/4/2004]

Destination of the week: Malta

The Virgin Mary is venerated for her powers of intercession throughout the Catholic world, but few nations believe they have quite so much to thank her for as Malta. The end of the Ottoman siege of the Mediterranean island in 1565; the withdrawal of the French after a two-year occupation in 1800; the end of the Axis Powers' siege in 1943; they all took place on 8 September, the feast of the nativity of the Virgin.

The celebration culminates in a feast in honour of her role in the country's survival. The festa is held in three Maltese parishes--Senglea, Mellieha and Naxxar--and Xaghra, on the neighbouring island of Gozo. There is also a fiercely competitive annual regatta held in the Grand Harbour in the capital, Valletta.  For more information contact the Malta Tourist Office (020-8877 6990; www.visitmalta.com)

POPE RETURNS REVERED ICON TO RUSSIA [Source: Independent on Sunday (London), 8/29/2004]

Seeking to end almost a thousand-year rift between the Catholic and Orthodox churches, the Vatican yesterday presented its eastern rival with a revered icon of the Virgin Mary. Its absence from Russia--especially since it was in the hands of Rome--has been a source of resentment for many decades.

The icon has hung on Pope John Paul II's wall for the past 11 years. The Pope had wanted to return the icon in person on an official visit to Russia, but Alexy II, the head of the Russian Orthodox Church, has made it clear he is not welcome. So, acting on the personal wishes of the 84-year-old supreme pontiff, Cardinal Walter Kasper handed over the bejewelled icon to Patriarch Alexy II during an elaborate ceremony in the Kremlin. Although the Icon of the Kazan Madonna is thought to be a 17th or 18th-century copy--albeit superb--of the original, which dates back to 1579 and went missing in 1904, the religious relic has enormous spiritual resonance in Russia.  Crafted from gold and wood and studded with precious stones, the icon is believed to have miracle-working powers: the original is credited with facilitating the rout of Polish troops from Moscow in 1612.

Animosity between the two churches dates back to 1054, when the Great Schism occurred and the Eastern and Western branches of Christianity went their own ways. Since the collapse of Communism in 1991, relations between the churches have sunk still lower, with Moscow accusing Rome of trying to poach its believers, a claim the Catholic Church fiercely denies. But in a recent interview with the Italian daily Corriere della Sera, Alexy II said the Catholic Church "must radically change its policy towards the Orthodox branch and end unfriendly premeditated actions." The Pope is anxious to make headway in bringing the churches closer together and hopes for a historic reconciliation. Before the icon left Rome for Moscow he said that he hoped it would "speed the day of full unity of the faithful."

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