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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.


  News from the Marian Library


Mary in Books, Films and Music

Father Donald, Calloway, IMRI student and Provincial Councilor for Marians of the Immaculate Conception in the United States, presents moving personal testimony in a recent video offered on DVD through Vision Video, No Turning Back: Confessions of a Catholic Priest. The Marian Library has a VHS videotape copy available for patrons to check out.

Picturing Mary, a stunning new high-definition documentary to debut next month on public television, explores how images of the Virgin reflect numerous traditions, devotional practices, and cultures.  The one-hour program leads viewers on a pictorial journey through history from the earliest times to the present day and presents a stunning array of art from twelve locations in eight different countries.

Picturing Mary is a joint effort of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops' (USCCB) Catholic Communications Campaign (CCC) and New York public television station Thirteen/WNET.  The documentary follows their previous collaboration on the 2001 Emmy award-winning "The Face of Jesus in Art."  The documentary is narrated by actress Jane Seymour and features quotations read by actor James Keach.

A Spanish version can be accessed using SAP (Secondary audio program) television control.

Picturing Mary will be distributed to public television nationwide by American Public Television (APT) in December.  Already more than 100 stations, including stations in all top 10 markets, have scheduled it to air in December. (For a list of air dates and times, visit  DVD copies will be available for purchase at $19.95 from USCCB publishing (or call 800-235-8722).


For more information, visit or, or contact Sister Mary Ann Walsh of the USCCB at 202-541-3200.

A film on the miracle of Our Lady of Guadalupe and its impact on Mexican life will be released Dec. 8 in the United States.

The movie "Guadalupe" was released in the context of celebrations for the 475th anniversary of the apparitions to St. Juan Diego at Tepeyac.

Director Santiago Parra, a native of Ecuador, filmed scenes of the movie in Europe and the Americas. The film was produced by the company Dos Corazones (Two Hearts).

Parra said the film tries to capture the Guadalupan fervor of Mexico by a foreign director who is able to see profoundly what many Mexicans do not see.

His team and cast members were advised by the Higher Institute of Guadalupan Studies.

The world premiere took place in 150 cinemas of Mexico on Nov. 30.  The film's official Web page is


Last Sunday, thousands piled into the Vatican's Paul VI Hall for the world premiere of the new film, The Nativity.  The evening began with a reading of the Gospels recounting the stories of the angel's appearance to Zachariah, the Annunciation to Mary, the Nativity, the Adoration of the Magi, and the Massacre of the Innocents.  Italian actor Gigi Prioetti read the passages beautifully, preparing the audience for what was to come.  Hearing the words of the Gospel helped the viewer tie the backdrop of God's Word to the dramatized version of the story.

The movie does a remarkable job of encapsulating time.  It starts on a dark night and an approaching storm and jumps back a year so that the viewers feel propelled toward man's appointment with God.  All things converge at this "fullness of time," from the miraculous conceptions of Jesus and John the Baptist to the Magi, who observe an extraordinary sign in the heavens, and finally to Herod, the despot who senses an impending threat and uses all his guile and power to root it out.  The story is far more fast-paced than one would imagine, with a few action scenes dotted through the film to build up tension and anticipation.  But this is not a movie about special effects or glamorous sets.  The film never forgets it is a vehicle to communicate the story of the humble birth of the Savior of the world.

The one slightly jarring note comes from a less-than-inspiring rendering of the character of Mary.  Keisha Castle-Hughes, the actress entrusted with this daunting task, gives us a Mary who was much like any other girl, so similar in fact, that she embodies an adolescent moodiness that seems strangely out of place.  When Mary learns of her betrothal to Joseph, for instance, she complains in terms understandable in 2006 ("Why do I have to marry a man I hardly know?") but impossible for a young woman of her era and station, much less for one of Mary's exceptional virtue.  Fortunately, this lacuna has only a minor effect on one's enjoyment of the film.  Castle-Hughes' portrayal of Mary's pregnancy is both beautiful and moving.  As she slowly deepens in her understanding of Who she is carrying, Mary becomes more serene and certain.

The real star of the show is Joseph, played by Oscar Isaac.   He is portrayed as one having loved Mary from afar, assisting her family in tactful ways.  He is overjoyed the day Mary is promised to him as wife.  This makes it all the more poignant when Joseph discovers that Mary is pregnant.  More than wounded pride and honor, his heart seems broken.  Even before the angel informs him of Mary's exalted status, Joseph has already decided not to denounce her, still protecting her; and when he returns to Mary's side, he becomes a most steadfast and self-sacrificing husband as he bears hardship, scorn, and suffering ...

Source: Elizabeth Lev at Duquesne University's Italian campus

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Radio Maria From The Marian Library

Francesca Franchina, long time member of the Marianist Family, will be doing a series of Marian broadcasts through the local station for Radio Maria WHJM (FM 88.7) in Anna, Ohio.  Called "Francesca AND Friends: WHY MARY?" the program airs every Wednesday from 11:30 AM-12:30 PM EST focusing on: What in the world is going on about Mary; how to speak with others about Mary; and Mary in Scripture.

Francesca Franchina, MS Ed. talks with Father Michael Ross, SDB, a Salesian priest from Dublin, Ireland focusing on how intergenerational and inner healing, evangelization and The Legion of Mary meld to bring forth transformation in lives across the world.

Tune in and call in questions and comments for Father and Francesca.  Toll Free: 1-866-333-MARY 1-866-333-6279.  The broadcast may also be heard on-line at [Click on the BVMary photo ... Scroll down to RADIO MARIA USA (English) ... Click on the windows icon or which ever media program you have on your PC.].  The web site also provides access to some previous broadcasts.  We'll keep you informed about future programs.  Encores of each show are broadcast Monday nights from 8:30-9:30 pm EST two weeks after the original.

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New Exhibit

The Marian Library is hosting The Nativity Through Children's Eyes, a display of children's art in our Gallery through January 28, 2006, on weekdays from 8:30 am - 4:30 pm or by special arrangement [call 937-229-4214].  The art was created by children in the local Dayton area as well as children from Germantown and Xenia  Over 500 pieces of artwork were received.  Judging took place last week and a total of twelve cash prizes were distributed to the top winners.  Click here to see the virtual exhibit.

Creches as well as Quilts from Saint Simon's Quilting Group in Cincinnati are also on display in our museum.  Patrons with RealPlayer may also view a streaming video showing the sets which were on display during the 2005 Christmas season.

Creches from the Marian Library Collection are also on display at the Sacred Heart Cathedral in Rochester, New York.  Booklets showing photographs of the pieces displayed along with descriptive text are available at The Marian Library.  Ask for the title: A Celebration of Nativity Creches 2006.

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Additional Web Addresses for The Mary Page

In order to make our web site more accessible, The Mary Page may now be reached at the following URLs:;;;;;; and  The original address on the University of Dayton site,, remains active as well.

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Web Collaborators

Two important Catholic websites have added The Mary Page to their list of Media Partners. highlights items from The Mary Page in their section on Catholic News. includes a Mary Channel on their navbar with Mary Page articles. Please visit these sites in return.  We expect continued collaboration with them in the future.

Also, the University of Dayton Research Institute (UDRI) has added the Gallery section of The Mary Page to the Exhibits section of their on-line museum, the Plethoreum.

Radio Maria broadcasts from Milan Italy, heard in 49 countries; WHJM broadcasts out of Louisiana across USA, including FF 88.7, an affiliate station in Anna, Ohio (north of Dayton) which airs regular Marian talks from UD's Marian Library every Wednesday at 11:30 am EST.

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International Marian Research Institute Course Schedule

IMRI courses for the Fall 2006 semester concluded on November 17.  The course schedule for the Spring 2007 semester is now available.

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A section on international stamps with images of Mary has been added to our About Mary page.  The latest addition was Bolivia.  Expect more countries to follow.

We have updated the Marian Thoughts of Benedict XVI through November 29, and revised the following features: Address of Marian Shrines in Canada and the United States; and The Hail Mary in Various Languages.  We have also posted a new article, Our Lady of Guadalupe: Icon of the Church in the Americas.

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From Zenit

Papal Homily at Mary's House in Ephesus
"Christ is Grace; Christ is Peace"
Ephesus, Turkey, November 29, 2006

Dear Brothers and Sisters:

In this Eucharistic celebration we praise the Lord for Mary's divine motherhood, a mystery solemnly confessed and proclaimed in Ephesus at the Ecumenical Council of 431.  To this place, so dear to the Christian community, my venerable predecessors the Servants of God Paul VI and John Paul II came as pilgrims, the latter visiting this Shrine on 30 November, 1979, just over a year after the beginning of his Pontificate.  Another of my Predecessors was in this country not as Pope, but as the Papal representative, from January 1935 to December 1944, Blessed John XXIII, Angelo Roncalli, whose memory still enkindles great devotion and affection.  He very much esteemed and admired the Turkish people ...

We have listened to a passage from Saint John's Gospel which invites us to contemplate the moment of the Redemption when Mary, united to her Son in the offering of his sacrifice, extended her motherhood to all men and women, and in particular to the disciples of Jesus.  A privileged witness to that event was the author of the Fourth Gospel, John, the only one of the Apostles to remain at Golgotha with the Mother of Jesus and the other women.  Mary's motherhood, which began with her fiat in Nazareth, is fulfilled at the foot of the Cross ...

In today's liturgy we have repeated, as the refrain of the Responsorial Psalm, the song of praise proclaimed by the Virgin of Nazareth on meeting her elderly kinswoman Elizabeth (cf. Lk 1:39).  Our hearts too were consoled by the words of the Psalmist: "steadfast love and faithfulness will meet, righteousness and peace will kiss." (Ps 85:10) ... Mary teaches us that the source of our joy and our one sure support is Christ, and she repeats his words: "Do not be afraid" (Mk 6:50), "I am with you" (Mt 28:20).  Mary, Mother of the Church, accompany us on our way!  Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us!  "Aziz Mereyem Mesih'in Annesi bizim išin Dua et." Amen.

Where Mary is Believed to Have Lived
Structure Near Ephesus Was Ancient Pilgrimage Site
Ephesus, Turkey, November 29, 2006

Benedict XVI celebrated Mass, which was attended by part of the small Turkish Catholic community, at the house where, according to tradition, the Blessed Virgin Mary once lived.  From the first centuries, numerous Christian authors from the East and West mentioned John's and the Blessed Virgin's stay in this city, in which were located the headquarters of the first of the seven churches mentioned in the Book of Revelation.  But, how was it determined that this was the house of Jesus' Mother?  The finding took place at the end of the 19th century ...

Archeological studies carried out in 1898 and 1899 brought to light among the ruins the remains of a first-century house, as well as the ruins of a small village that was established around the house since the seventh century.  Pope Leo XIII (1878-1903) was positive about these findings and re-established in the Ordo Romanus a note that on the Feast of the Assumption mentioned Ephesus as the probable place of the Blessed Virgin's Dormition.  The Mereyem Ana shrine, in front of which Benedict XVI celebrated Mass on November 29, was restored in the 1950s.  Pastoral care of the site has been entrusted to the Capuchin friars ...

Mary's House was visited by Pope Paul VI in 1967 and by Pope John Paul II in 1979.  It is the object of Muslim pilgrimages too, as Mary is presented in the Koran as "the only woman who has not been touched by the devil."

Mary: Our Advent Guide Par Excellence
Bill Zalot recommends Joyous Expectations: Journeying Through Advent With Mary (2005) by Sister M. Jean Frisk
National Catholic Register, November 29, 2006

Another Advent, another year of promises to myself to totally avoid the secular frenzy of the "holiday season" and, instead, spend more time in prayer and contemplation of the coming of the Lord in the quiet and humility of a manger.

And yet ... There is some decorating I would like to do.  And shopping.  And partying.  Is it possible to strike a balance pleasing to God?

Sister M. Jean Frisk, a Schoenstatt Sister of Mary, understands the secular vs. spiritual tensions that I--and, truth be told, most other Catholics--go through at this time of year.  Her Joyous Expectations can help individuals and families who want to still the December chaos, and, in the process, focus us on the purpose behind the varied customs and traditions that have developed to ring in the birth of Christ.

For starters, the book is an ideal aid to prepare for daily Mass during this season of repentance and joy.  Many of its meditations are taken from the Eucharistic liturgy of the day.  Then there are suggested activities, Scripture readings and prayers.

And it's not for nothing that Sister Jean lets the Blessed Mother be our guide.  In lovely prayers and reflections, I found myself truly drawing closer to Jesus through Mary--even though I read the book in preparation for Advent rather than during it.


When we journey through Advent with Mary, we look to what's coming with eyes of love--no matter how maddeningly hectic the world outside (and inside) our homes may seem.

May this addition to the Advent library become a staple every "holiday season" from here on in.

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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.

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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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Liturgical Season

To celebrate the month of December 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 December.

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Emmanuel, God With Us!: A Celebration of Music and The Word with choir, orchestra, and narrator

Date: Saturday, December 9, 2006 - Sunday November 19, 2006

Time: 4:00 PM (concert lasts 1 hour with reception afterwards in the vestibule)

Location: Queen of Apostles Chapel (Dayton, OH)

Cost: Minimum $10.00 donation per ticket, children under 12 free (All proceeds go to the QAC Community with 15% to Social Justice Ministry)

To receive further information, email Teesie Lupp at or call Deacon Greg Cecere at 937-429-0510.

Click this link for a list of all of the current Marian Events by geographical position.

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Our Mary Page web site is updated frequently. Please stop in again and see What's New.

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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, 12/11/2006 13:17:19 EST by Kelly Bodner . Please send any comments to

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