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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.


We have received a number of emails from readers commending our website, The Mary Page. Thank you all for your encouragement and support. The following comment is a typical example:

I read your excerpt and it was very inspirational for a greater devotion to Christ through Mary. Thank you.


Alumni Update

IMRI graduate, Dr. Virginia M. Kimball, will teach a course on Mary in the Eastern Orthodox Tradition at the Athenaeum of Ohio in Cincinnati from June 14-17, 2010.  She is currently President of the American Chapter of the Ecumenical Society of the Blessed Virgin Mary and is scheduled to speak on July 20, 2010 about The Bible at the Core of Marian Ecumenical Dialogue during the Seventeenth International Congress of the ESBVM. She is also preparing a book for publication with Wipf and Stock with ESBVM colleague, Dr. Maura Hearden: Ten Reasons Why the Theotokos is Important to the World Today. We will keep you posted on its availability.

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Mary in Books, Films and Music

New Film on the Life of Mary is Being Prepared

Dr. Catherine O'Brien, who spoke on Mary in Film at MSA 2009, informs us of "a new production that will update the story of Jesus to 2009, and will be narrated by Mary. The film is due to be released in December." For more information click into the promotional website for In Our Time.  Matt Page has also posted some information about this film in his Bible Films Blog.

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Radio Maria from the Marian Library

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 12:00 - 1:00 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, June 9, Francesca Franchina speaks with Father Pascal Tuyisenge of Africa and Dr. Sylvia Gleason, D.O., of Dayton, OH, about Project Congo, a charity helping to meet the medical and nutritional needs of the refugee and orphan population of Goma in the Democratic Republic of Congo; the cause of the war there and what is happening medically since Dr. Gleason's last visit there to pick up the pieces of life with agricultural, medical, and building projects; help from around the globe and in particularly the USA; how Dr. Gleason brings medical help to help women and families through outreach with medical and lay community action.  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 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, June 8, at 5:00 PM, Francesca Franchina reviews Ralph Martin's article on Charismatic Gifts and Contemplative Spirituality as addressed by St. John of the Cross and shares her favorite recipe for Tiramisu, the delicious Italian desert made with Mascarpone, Ricotta, Lady Fingers, Chocolate, Rum and Expresso Coffee.

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 William 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 A. Thompson, S.M., Thursday, June 10, 2:30 PM on the Memorial of the Immaculate Heart of Mary

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From the Marian Treasure Chest

Serra in Mexico (by Brother John Samaha, S.M.)

July 1 is the liturgical festival of Blessed Junipero Serra, apostle of California and devotee of our blessed Mother. Although he served longer in Mexico, his work in Mexico is little known. For details see the article below.

Blessed Junipero Serra, the Mexico Years (1749-1769)
by Brother John M. Samaha, S.M.

Serra's influence on California history and missions from 1769 until his death in 1784 is generally well-known. But few are familiar with his work in Mexico in the twenty years previous. Prior to setting foot in Alta California, Blessed Junipero Serra labored lovingly in Mexico for two decades. Millions have visited his California missions, but few have seen those he established and served in Mexico. The Franciscans were the first evangelizers in Mexico in the early sixteenth century. Following a prolonged lull of almost two hundred years, a second major thrust of evangelization was mounted in the eighteenth century. In the forefront were the Spanish Franciscans. The first churches in Mexico were built by the Franciscans in 1524-1525 in what is now the greater Mexico City region. Still today Franciscan foundations--churches and convents--are found in most parts of the country. The structures were often massive and imposing, about a block long, and dominated the towns that grew around them. Although the 1848 secularization reform laws appropriated much church property, many locations are still operational parishes.

Serra Arrives in Mexico

Blessed Junipero Serra was a major player in the second wave of evangelization launched in the eighteenth century. In 1749 Junipero set sail from Spain in the company of two of his former students, Fray Juan Crespi and Fray Francisco Palou, who later became Junipero's biographer. They became an indomitable trio of lifetime companions and co-workers in the world of New Spain. After ninety-nine days on rough seas the Franciscan contingent reached Veracruz on December 6, 1749. Records indicate they had endured great hardships at sea: thirst, hunger, near-shipwreck, a leaking ship, a mutinous crew, storms, and other perils and privations. But Palou reported: "Junipero was never heard to complain."

From Veracruz they walked, in imitation of St. Francis of Assisi, 275 miles over four mountain ranges to Mexico City. Upon arrival in Mexico City, Junipero went directly to the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe to pass the night in prayer. The following day the new missionary contingent walked to the Apostolic College of San Fernando, founded in 1734, one of three apostolic colleges in Mexico.

Orientation to Mexico and Its Mission

These apostolic colleges were outstanding Franciscan training centers for the formation of an elite band of missionaries who were specially selected and rigorously trained. The program was a Franciscan innovation in missiology, the study of evangelization strategy, a twelve-month course of preparation for missionary work. These special centers prepared missionary teams for Mexico, California, Texas, Arizona, and New Mexico. Serra and his companions steeped themselves in these studies.

Serra Assigned to Sierra Gorda, 1750-1759

After only five months in the program at the Apostolic College of San Fernando, Junipero volunteered to answer an emergency call to fill an immediate need in the Sierra Gorda northeast of Mexico City and Queretaro, an area in central Mexico that had resisted colonization and evangelization. He rose to the challenge to evangelize the resistant Pame Indians. With Crespi and Palou, Serra set out on foot to the high altitude mountain ranges of the Sierra Gorda. Some peaks exceeded ten-thousand feet.

The Legacy of the Sierra Gorda Missions

Appointed president of this mission territory, Junipero and his collaborators over a period of years erected five baroque-style mission churches: Mission San Miguel Arcangel at Conca, Mission Santiago at Jalpan, Mission San Francisco del Valle at Tilaco, Mission Nuestra Senora de la Luz at Tancoyol, and Mission Nuestra Senora la Purisima Concepcion de Aguas at Landa. Constructing these folk-baroque mission churches was a labor of love. They are considered sermons in stone and stucco. With an eye for elegant style, Junipero and his construction teams made certain that these buildings were dressed inside and out with elaborate carvings and bright colors and finely sculptured facades. Enshrinement of our faith called for the best human efforts. The practice of faith needed to be dynamic and displayed in an exquisite fashion. So the churches were attractive, eye-catching creations. This was Junipero's objective. These glorious edifices synthesized the two cultures of old Spain and the local natives by blending Christian symbolism with native craftsmanship and artistry. So impressive are these gems that UNESCO designated these five mission churches international heritage sites in 2003.

The friars, including the diminutive Junipero (about 5'2"), worked alongside the laborers in the task of construction. But Junipero did not stop at construction skills. He taught himself and others how to sew, and made bright-colored clothing for the children. He hired a music teacher and taught the natives and colonists to sing the liturgy. With his flair for the dramatic and solemn, Junipero arranged pageants, dramatic skits, processions, and liturgical celebrations. Every Saturday evening a procession in honor of our Blessed Mother wended its way through each mission town with flowers, candles, torches, singing, and the recitation of the rosary.

In addition he cared for the mission population's temporal needs by providing livestock, seeds, grains, fruit trees, and vines. Through his providence the mission peoples were able to learn skills and trades. Part of his missionary strategy included the development of self-supporting agricultural and economic communities. Serra's parting words to the Pames when he was recalled to the College of San Fernando are now emblazoned on a bronze plaque at a Sierra Gorda museum: "I arrived with nothing. I leave you taking nothing. But I leave you with a great treasure, the faith." Francisco Palou reported of his intrepid missionary superior, "He won the hearts of all."

Serra Faces New Challenges, 1759-1767

After a period of service, Franciscan policy called each missionary back to the apostolic college that had prepared him. Fray Junipero Serra returned to San Fernando in 1758 after nine very productive years in the Sierra Gorda. This was a time of sabbatical, a renewal period, during which he worked as novice master, choir master, counselor, and preacher of retreats and missions. Junipero followed the usual program of six months at the college and six months on the road preaching missions. His reputation marked him as a dynamic and effective preacher with a style that touched the heart of his hearers.

With the expulsion of the Jesuits from Spain and its colonies by King Carlos III in 1767, the Franciscans were called to fill the vacuum in the northern missions of the lengthy Baja California peninsula. Junipero Serra was assigned as president of those missions in that year and made Loreto his base.

Adelante, 1769

Loreto became his point of departure when he was appointed president of the new missionary expedition to Alta California. In 1769 Fray Junipero Serra and his companions headed northward to develop the history of California, beginning with Mission San Diego. This undaunted missionary lived wholeheartedly his motto: Siempre adelante. Nunca atras. Always go forward. Never turn back.

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Current Exhibit!

Form Seeking Expression--Marian Artistic Creations, by Christina Saj, will be on display from April 19 - June 18, 2010 in The Marian Library.  Click here for virtual exhibit.  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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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 Summer 2010 semester commenced on June 7, 2010!

The Pontifical Academic Program leading to STL and STD in theology with a specialization in Marian Studies offers courses in three year-round sessions (summer, fall, and spring). See course offerings:

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In keeping with the season, we recommend Celebrating Mary in Ordinary Time and The Eucharist with Mary.

In our Korean language section we have updated News through June 6, 2010 and posted Marian Commemoration Days for June. We have also revised and expanded our material in German.  This is a work in progress, so expect more content soon.  Feel free to let us know what you think of this new section.

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World We Live In Has Great Need of God
Source: VIS (Vatican City), June 1, 2010

The traditional procession marking the end of the month of May took place yesterday at 8:00 pm in the Vatican Gardens. As the rosary was recited, the procession wound from the Church of St. Stephen of the Abyssinians to the Grotto of Our Lady of Lourdes.

 The Pope arrived at the Grotto of Lourdes at 9:00 pm and briefly addressed the present faithful before imparting the apostolic blessing.

Remarking on the festivity of the day, the Visitation of the Virgin Mary to her cousin Elizabeth, the Holy Father commented that with this gesture "we recognize the clearest example and the truest meaning of our path as believers and the path of the Church itself. By its nature, the Church is called to proclaim the Gospel everywhere and at all times, to spread the faith to every man and woman, and to every culture."

"Mary remained with Elizabeth for three months to offer her loving nearness, concrete assistance, and all the everyday services that were needed. In this way, Elizabeth becomes the symbol of the many aged and ill, even more, of all those who need assistance and love. How many of these persons there are today in our families, in our communities, in our cities! And Mary--who called herself 'the handmaid of the Lord'--made herself the servant of mankind. More specifically, she served the Lord whom she encountered in her brothers and sisters."  

"It should be noted that 'Mary's charity' is not limited to concrete assistance, but achieves its highest form in bestowing Jesus himself, in 'making Him present'", the Pope said. "This is the heart and the height of the evangelical mission. This is the true meaning and the most genuine purpose of every missionary path: to offer human beings the living and personal Gospel, which is the Lord Jesus Himself."

"Jesus", he continued, "is the true and only treasure that we have to give humanity. Today's men and women have a profound longing for Him, including when it seems they are ignoring or rejecting Him. The society we live in, Europe, the entire world has great need of Him."

The Holy Father concluded by underlining that "we have been entrusted with this extraordinary responsibility. Let us live it with joy and devotion so that ours might truly be a civilization in which truth, justice, liberty, and love reign, the fundamental and irreplaceable pillars of a truly shared life that is ordered and peaceful. Let us live this responsibility remaining steadfast in listening to the Word of God, in communal life, in breaking of the bread, and in our prayers. May this be the grace that together this evening we ask of the Most Blessed Virgin Mary."

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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.

Pope Consecrates Priests of the World to Immaculate Heart of Mary
Source: CNA/EWTN News (Fatima, Portugal) May 12, 2010

After praying Vespers this evening in Fatima, Pope Benedict XVI consecrated the priests of the world to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. In order to consecrate the more than four-hundred thousand men, he prayed the following prayer while adoring the Blessed Sacrament, and accompanied by priests, religious and consecrated persons gathered at the Church of the Holy Trinity.

Immaculate Mother, in this place of grace, called together by the love of your Son Jesus, the Eternal High Priest, we, sons in the Son and his priests, consecrate ourselves to your maternal Heart, in order to carry out faithfully the Father's Will. We are mindful that, without Jesus, we can do nothing good (cf. Jn 15:5) and that only through Him, with Him and in Him, will we be instruments of salvation for the world....

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 June with Mary:

Marian Events

IMRI Summer Symposium

Title: Mary in the Consecrated Life

Date: July 27-29, 2010

Location: University of Dayton

A Symposium for representatives of the consecrated life to explore Marian charism today.

For more information click here.

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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 Friday, 07/09/2010 11:50:02 EDT by Michael P. Duricy . Please send any comments to

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