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The 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.


Mary in Books, Films and Music

Article on Marian Flowers

"Flowers of the Nativity," an article relating the legends about herbs and flowers associated with the birth of Jesus, appears in the December 2009 issue of the St. Anthony Messenger magazine. The author, Vincenzina Krymow, is a volunteer research assistant at The Marian Library. The article is based on the PowerPoint presentation and lecture, "Herbal Lore in the Nativity Tradition," given at the Friends of the Creche National Convention held in Dublin, Ohio on November 10, 2007.

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Radio Maria from the Marian Library


As a special gift to listeners, Radio Maria 88.7 FM WHJM (Anna), 1600 AM WULM (Springfield) and streaming live at, will be airing the following musical programs for its listening area:

Sunday, December 13:

2:00 PM Dayton Area Harp Ensemble Fall Concert, featuring eleven harps, flute, violin, cello, and percussion, conducted by Ron Kindell, recorded live at Saint Henry Parish, Dayton
6:30 PM Jubilee Advent Concert and Evensong, under the direction of Paula Kern Price, broadcast live from Holy Trinity Church, Dayton

Sunday, December 20:

7:00 PM Festival of Choirs, featuring the five parishes in the Marian Cluster, joined by St. Louis Church, North Star and St. Nicholas Church, Osgood, for a combined choir of one-hundred voices under the direction of Paul Mizer, broadcast live from St. John the Baptist Church, Maria Stein

Christmas Day:

Check the Radio Maria website and listen for special Christmas programming, including a Christmas Concert featuring several choirs from St. Augustine Church, Minster, under the direction of Amy Noykos. Radio Maria wishes listeners a blessed Advent and Christmas season.  Radio Maria...a Christian voice in your home.

Francesca Franchina, MS Ed., a long-time member of the Marianist Family, will be doing a series of Marian broadcasts through the local stations for Radio Maria WHJM (FM 88.7) in Anna, Ohio and WULM (AM 1600) in Springfield, Ohio.  Called " Francesca and Friends: Why Mary?," the program airs every Wednesday from 11:30 AM-12:30 PM EST focusing on what is going on in the world about Mary, how to speak with others about Mary, and Mary in Scripture.

On Wednesday, December 9, Francesca Franchina speaks with Nick Cardilino; University of Dayton Campus Minister for Social Action, accomplished musician, song writer, and singer, regarding his music and music choices for youth and young people. Nick talks about cutting CDs, writing music, topping the charts and meeting other prominent Christian musicians focusing on the creative process and also on campus ministry at the University of Dayton. Participate in the lively discussion on raising teens, 'Dorkism' and how it all comes together in Advent with a new acronym! Hear Nick's new song, Christmas Love and much more.  CALL IN TOLL FREE.  PARTICIPATE IN THE PROGRAM (during the live show); 1-866-333-6279.

The broadcast may also be heard on-line at  The website also provides access to some previous broadcasts.  We'll keep you informed about future programs.  An encore of each show is broadcast Monday night from 8:30-9:30 pm EST one week after the original.

Fran's series, Through the Tummy to the Heart, (T5H) airs every Tuesday except the first Tuesday from 5:00-5:45 PM on RADIO MARIA WHJM and also online. The series encores Saturdays from 3:00-3:45 pm.  Tune in 88.7 FM (WHJM) in the northern Archdiocese of Cincinnati and on line at from anywhere in the world. Send email to Francesca with questions, comments, suggestions at Send email while the programs are going on if you cannot get through or if you are listening outside of the USA. CALL IN TOLL FREE; PARTICIPATE IN THE PROGRAM (during the live show); 1-866-333-6279.

On Tuesday, December 8, at 5:00 PM, Fran salutes the Daughters of the Immaculate Conception on their one-hundredth anniversary. Founded in 1909 by Mrs. Josephine DiPasquale in Dayton, the program will highlight their Marian Apostolate growing in wisdom, knowledge, understanding and furthering the Catholic faith through Catholic Action to help make the Blessed Mother better known, loved and served. Working in collaboration with The Marian Library/International Marian Research Institute and the with Society of Mary at the University of Dayton, their meetings often feature speakers from IMRI. Guests are the founder's daughter, Louise DiPasquale Zimmaro, granddaughter, Patricia DiPasquale Krul of Dayton, and granddaughter, Mary Jo DiPasquale McCoy of Texas, who helped celebrate the One-Hundred-Year Founding Anniversary today at the University of Dayton's Mother of Good Counsel Chapel where the Daughters of the Immaculate Conception participated in Mass and renewed their Solemn Marian Consecration followed by a celebratory luncheon. Francesca shares her favorite celebratory recipe for the very special Italian Wedding Cake, Cassata.

Living With Mary Today! Live: Thursdays and Fridays 2:30-3:00 PM EST: From the Pontifical International Marian Research Institute (IMRI) at the University of Dayton Marian Library, internationally-known Mariologists Fathers Johann Roten, Francois Rossier, Thomas Thompson, and Bertrand Buby of the Society of Mary (Marianists), and other IMRI faculty; Schoenstatt Sisters Jean Frisk and Danielle Peters, Michael Duricy and Brother Erik Otiende will discuss Marian themes such as The Blessed Mother and Ecumenism; Mary and The Family; Mary and Suffering, Marian Teachings and Writings of Pope John Paul II, Pope Benedict XVI; Mary and Scripture from the Founder of the Marianists, Blessed Wm. Joseph Chaminade; Mary and Vatican II, Marian Apparitions and others. The Marian Library at the University of Dayton houses the largest collection of Marian books and artifacts in the world, and IMRI is the site of post-graduate studies in Mariology for the Doctorate, STL and STD. Find out more by visiting The University of Dayton; The Marian Library and IMRI are collaborators with the International Satellite Radio Maria Network and Radio Maria Ohio.  Click here for the complete schedule of future programs planned to date.

This week's programs:

Father Thomas Thompson, S.M., Thursday, December 10, 2:30 PM on Our Lady of Guadalupe

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From the Marian Treasure Chest

The Three Masses of Christmas (by Brother John Samaha, S.M.)

Our feast of Christmas came from a pagan observance which was Christianized.  It is a pagan festival revisited. The first mention of the celebration of the Lord's nativity in a liturgical calendar appears in the fourth century.  This was the 'baptism' of the pagan festival of the invincible sun (sol invictus), an observance introduced in 274 by the Emperor Aurelius (270-275), and celebrated in Rome on December 25, the winter solstice.   The "Sun of Justice" (Mal 3:20) came as "the light of the world" (Jn 8:12) to vanquish darkness and to triumph over sin and death.

As the Christianization of the winter solstice, observed in Egypt and in Arabia on January 6, developed into the feast of the Epiphany, it became a major feast of the East.  To counteract certain pagan myths, Epiphany, which means 'showing forth' or 'manifestation', placed emphasis on the baptism of Jesus and his mission, and on the revelation of his glory at Cana?  Gradually the feast of Epiphany spread to the entire West in the fourth century, and the East adopted the feast of Christmas about the same time.

In the fourth century at Rome the celebration of Christmas was a rather ordinary Mass celebrated by the pope.  The Mass was similar to our present Mass at Dawn, and proclaimed the prologue of John's Gospel.  To refute and oppose the Arian heresy rampant at that time, the Mass affirmed and celebrated the Word made flesh.  This Christmas Mass was clearly Christological and dogmatic in character, and in 360 mentioned the adoration of the Magi and the massacre of the innocent children of Bethlehem.

At Bethlehem a night Mass was celebrated for Epiphany in the grotto of the Lord's birth.  Beginning in the fifth century, a night Mass was celebrated in Rome also, but it was the Mass of Christmas and not that of Epiphany.  The Pope celebrated the night Mass at the Church of St. Mary Major, built after the Council of Ephesus.  Wood from a crèche was displayed in one of the basilica's chapels, and the Mass celebrated there became known as the Mass ad praesepe, that is, near the crèche.  Since the account of Jesus' birth at Bethlehem was read from the Gospel of Luke, the theme of this celebration was historical.

The Greek (Byzantine) colony in Rome also celebrated December 25.  They assembled at the Church of Saint Anastasia (Holy Resurrection).  To respect the Byzantines the Pope celebrated Mass with them in the morning before going to St. Peter's Basilica.  In that Mass the gospel reading was the announcement of the good news to the shepherds found in Luke's Gospel.

This is how the three Masses of Christmas originated.  The Pope and the faithful celebrated Mass at night at St. Mary Major, at dawn at St. Anastasia, and during the day at St. Peter.

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Current Exhibit

When Purple Meets All Other Colors, by Darel Sparling will be on display at The Marian Library Gallery from November 23, 2009 through January 28, 2010. The gallery is open 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday and on Saturday and Sunday by appointment by calling 937-229-4214. It is free and open to the public. Click here to see a virtual exhibit.

The Marian Library received its largest single gift recently from Australian collector, Elisabeth Van Mullekom-Cserep.  Employees and volunteers have been busy processing the gift which includes over twenty-three hundred items.  A selection of crèches from this outstanding donation will be unveiled in a special exhibition, At the Manger--World Nativity Traditions, during the 2009 Christmas season.  Opening on Thanksgiving weekend with a family-oriented open house from 1-4 pm on November 28, 2009, the displays will run through January 24, 2010.  Exhibits will be shown on the first and second floors of Roesch Library and the crèche room of The Marian Library.  Stop by often and enjoy these marvelous gifts.

UD Marian and Roesch Libraries Online Giving Page

The Marian Library Gallery is located on the seventh floor of Roesch Library.  Free and open to the public, hours are Mon-Fri, 8:30 am - 4:30 pm or by appointment.  Call 937-229-4214.

N.B. Prints and postcards related to the Exhibit of Polish Madonnas by Wislawa Kwiatkowska are no longer available for purchase at The Marian Library.

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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 articles from The Mary Page. Please visit these sites in return.  We expect continued collaboration with them in the future.

Radio Maria broadcasts from Milan, Italy, heard in forty-nine countries; WHJM broadcasts out of Louisiana across USA [including FM 88.7, an affiliate station in Anna, Ohio (north of Dayton) and AM 1600, an affiliate in Springfield, Ohio, which air regular Marian talks from UD's Marian Library every Wednesday at 11:30 am EST].

Mary's Gardens, the website of the late John S. Stokes, Jr. is in the process of being migrated to The Mary Page in accord with his bequest.  His children have also donated related physical holdings to The Marian Library.  Click here for more information.

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International Marian Research Institute Course Schedule

IMRI courses for the Spring 2010 semester will commence on February 8, 2010. The course schedule for Spring 2010 and beyond is now available.

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In keeping with the season, we recommend Advent Poetry and History of the Dogma of the Immaculate Conception.

We have posted some new Polish Christmas poems (see links at bottom of the page).

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Film Affirms Fatima's Timeless Message
Priest Says Mary Links Christians and Muslims
Source: Zenit (Fort Collins, Colorado), December 1, 2009

A new film about the Marian apparitions at Fatima is being released today, combining modern technology with a timeless message, only months before Benedict XVI's visit to the Portuguese shrine.

The 13th Day is the first major movie in over fifty years detailing Our Lady's apparition to three shepherd children in Fatima in 1917.

Filmed on location in Portugal, as well as in the United Kingdom, the movie weaves a story based on the memoirs of one of the children, who later became Sister Maria Lucia de Jesus, as well as thousands of eyewitness accounts of the events.

The film is a combination of "great entertainment, catechesis and evangelization," said Anthony Ryan, marketing director for Ignatius Press, the North American distribution company.

It is "a relevant wake-up call" for our culture today, he added at a press conference for the movie's release. Ryan explained that The 13th Day is a "message driven film," about the power of Our Lady's promises that are still relevant. ...

Click here for the complete article.

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The director and editors of The 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.

Nativity Collection Features 'Unprecedented Gift'
Source: Flyer News, (University of Dayton) December 3, 2009

Every culture has unique traditions for celebrating Christmas. At the Manger--World Nativity Traditions, an exhibit of more than two-hundred nativity scenes, sheds light on different nations and their distinctive portrayals of the birth of Christ.

The nativities, also known as crèches, are part of the annual Marian Library Gallery--International Marian Research Institute display and will be on exhibit now through Jan. 24, 2010 on the seventh floor of Roesch Library. ...

Click here for the complete article.

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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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Liturgical Season

Marian Commemoration Days

To celebrate the month of December with Mary:

The 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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Marian Events

Anniversary Year of Devotion to Our Lady of Good Success

Title: Nuestra Senora del Buen Suceso

Date: February 2, 2010 through February 2, 2011

Location: Monastery of the Immaculate Conception (Quito, Ecuador)

We invite you to participate in the four-hundredth anniversary year of the devotion to Our Lady of Good Success in Quito, Ecuador and the public veneration of the miraculous statue which resides in the Monastery of the Immaculate Conception (Conceptionist Sisters).

For more info call Apostolate of Our Lady of Good Success at 262-567-0920, email them at or visit their website,

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The 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, 03/08/2010 14:50:03 EST by Michael P. Duricy . Please send any comments to

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