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We recently received an email from Teresa Monaghen regarding her activities which she agreed to let us share with readers.

Dear Friends,

Hi everyone.  I have been doing a lot of traveling these past two months, just returned, and hope to send a little update soon!  However, I feel urged first to invite you to come and meet a really great man of God, Cardinal Francis Arinze, who worked closely with Blessed Pope John Paul II, and who has been a great advocate for holiness for all ages!  He will speak on many things, but will highlight the role of the Christian Family in the Modern World: Holy Families for a Holy World!  We are so blessed to have him among us.  Join us for one or more of the free Pro Sanctity events.  If your event includes a meal, we ask you to help us by sending in your RSVP as soon as possible!  Write to Rita Hejkal:  Many blessings and I look forward to seeing you at one of the events.  Please tell everyone!  Call me if you need more info!  Teresa Monaghen 402-289-2670

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Mary in Books, Films, and Music

New Marian Book

After four years of preparation, including research through The Marian Library, Mary in Our Life: Atlas of the Names and Titles of Mary, the Mother of Jesus, and Their Place in Marian Devotion by Nicholas J. Santoro has just come off the presses.  I am grateful to the author who donated a copy for the writer's personal use.

The book presents a bit of the history of the names, titles, and appellations used to identify the Blessed Mother throughout history.  It identifies 1,969 titles and explores some of the official and private attitudes and prejudices of the times; government pressures, conflicts, and interdictions; internal problems within the church; and some of the startling examples of dedication, devotion, and piety shown to the Blessed Mother over the centuries.  Together these titles seem to provide a real-life story of the Christian faith.  Emphasis is on the stories, but in some cases there is little more than the name.

The book is available through Barnes and Noble, or direct from the publisher, iUniverse.

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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, September 21, 2011, Francesca Franchina speaks with Rosary Rally founders, Joe Beyerle and Bob O'Connor, and organizer Don Coty about the Rosary held across the country and in our Archdiocese of Cincinnati in Dayton, OH on Sunday, October 9, at the University of Dayton Arena; focusing on how the mission and vision of the Knights of Columbus meshes into outreach and Catholic social action for the New Evangelization promulgated by Blessed John Paul II and his directive (in the words of Jesus) to "Set Out Into the Deep."

Francesca and Friends with Francesca Franchina, National OSIA Trustee, is now being broadcast throughout the New York City metropolitan area at 11 pm on Friday nights on WSNR 620 AM, as well as on other local  Radio Maria USA frequencies,  and streaming on  This is the replay of the program originating on the preceding Wednesday at noon EST.  Give a listen every Friday at 11 PM; Mondays at 8:30 PM and LIVE on Wednesdays at noon EST.

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, September 20, Francesca Franchina talks with Joyce Wolslegel, President of the Daughters of the Immaculate Conception (DOIC), Dayton, Ohio and evangelization/prayer pros, Carol Svisco and Caroline Adams, about this vibrant Catholic Marian Women's Organization founded in 1909 which continues to meet monthly to celebrate and educate about the Blessed Virgin Mary; Marian dogmas, doctrines, devotions, virtues and Catholic social issues.  Find out more about the Daughters of the Immaculate Conception bus trip to St. Peter in Chains Cathedral in Cincinnati on Thursday, October 20 and join them in their thirty-three-day Novena for growing in Our Lady's virtues and for the Triumph of the Immaculate Heart beginning November 5 for the renewal of their Marian Consecration on December 8, the Feast of the Immaculate Conception at the Mother of Good Counsel Chapel.  Interested in starting a Marian organization in your area?  Tune in and get the info.  Call in to ask questions or share Marian information.  Find out how you can start a DOIC group in your area.

Francesca Franchina shares her family's traditions, customs and foods.
Today's Recipe: Fast, deliciously filling, and easy Italian Stuffed Green Peppers and Frito Misto.

Send a SASE to Francesca; P O Box 3238, Dayton, OH 45401 for the St. Michael the Archangel and Precious Blood of Jesus Novena and Prayer or for Francesca's Italian Recipe of the Week.

This program and all Francesca's programs are archived on-line.

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 Bertrand Buby, François Rossier, Johann Roten, and Thomas Thompson of the Society of Mary (Marianists), and other IMRI faculty; Michael Duricy, Jean Frisk, and others 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 one of the two sites of post-graduate studies in Mariology for the 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 schedule of future programs planned to date.  Click here for the new audio archive!

This week's programs:

Sister M Jean Frisk, Thursday, September 22, 2:30 PM on Mary and the Art at The Marian Library

Sister M Jean Frisk, Friday, September 23, 2:30 PM on Our Lady of Ransom

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From the Marian Treasure Chest

Mary's Influence on Converts by Brother John M. Samaha, S.M.

Among the religious and cultural factors that influence converts to enter into full communion with the Church, the Blessed Virgin Mary holds particular prominence.  Yet she is not the possession of the Catholic Church solely, for many Protestant churches are rediscovering the presence and role of Mary in life’s pilgrimage of faith.

Before embracing Catholicism, Blessed John Henry Newman, probably the most famous convert in the last two centuries, formulated an explanation of the development of doctrines in the Catholic Church, especially the Marian doctrines.  He explained that the saving truths of revelation were not given by God in timeless and static expression, but as dynamic and life-giving truths which continue to unfold and develop.  In An Essay on the Development of Christian Doctrine Newman wrote: "Growth is the only evidence of life."  Ideas live in our minds and continually enlarge into fuller development.  "In a higher world it is otherwise, but here below to live is to change, and to be perfect is to have changed often."

To believe in the ongoing prayer and care of Mary for the faithful is to find the Virgin Mother's assistance in times of transitions, of new beginnings, of wandering and searching.  Sacred Scripture shows us that Mary is the Virgin of beginnings and transitions (Annunciation, Cana, Pentecost), and the Virgin of spiritual searching (Presentation, Finding in the Temple, Cana, Calvary).  It is quite natural then to experience her motherly presence in the struggles which accompany conversion, according to Father René Laurentin in A Year of Grace with Mary.

Conversions to Catholicism develop from a complex of various factors.  They result from conviction and personal experience.  But also at play are conditions and developments in the Church and society that often help or hinder conversions.  An instance of that scenario is nineteenth-century England in which that period's theological ferment and liberalism and the decision of the British government to suppress a number of Anglican bishoprics gave rise to the Oxford Movement, which questioned the Anglican Church's legitimacy.  The consequence was a number of conversions by prominent intellectuals from 1840-1920, the most noteworthy being John Henry Newman.  These converts were usually imbued with an understanding of the Virgin Mary and their devotion to her often preceded their entry into the Catholic Church.

John Henry Newman (1801-1890)

Following his conversion in 1845, Blessed John Henry Newman journeyed to Rome.  Upon his return as a Catholic priest he wrote that he "went round by Loreto."  As a pilgrim to the Holy House he wanted "to get the Blessed Virgin's blessing."  He commented about Mary's presence in his life.  "I have ever been in her shadow, if I may say it.  My college was St. Mary's, and my church; and when I went to Littlemore, there, by my own previous disposition, our Blessed Lady was waiting for me.  Nor did she do nothing for me in that low habitation, of which I always think with pleasure."

As an Anglican, Newman thought that the Catholic Church's Marian doctrine and devotion were exaggerated.  But in his study of the development of doctrine, he discovered that it was consistent with the early church.  "I was convinced by the Fathers," he explained.  The early Fathers and ancient Christian writers viewed Mary as the New Eve.  Newman came to understand Mary in patristic terms.  He understood that the Immaculate Conception was based on Mary's holiness, a concept present in the Fathers, and that the Assumption was rooted in her dignity as Mother of God, another concept from the early Christian writers.

Although Newman had reservations about some teachings of the Catholic Church while an Anglican, he nevertheless was devoted to the Blessed Virgin Mary.  In his Apologia pro Vita Sua he proclaimed, "In spite of my ingrained fears of Rome, and the decision of my reason and conscience against her usages, in spite of my affection for Oxford and Oriel, yet I had a secret longing love of Rome, the Mother of Christianity, and I had a true devotion to the Blessed Virgin, in whose college I lived, whose altar I served, and whose Immaculate Purity I had in one of my earliest printed sermons made much of."

Newman's reluctance concerning the Virgin Mary, his "great crux" regarding Catholicism, were the "expressions of popular feelings toward the Blessed Virgin" and the intemperate statements of some Catholic authors concerning Mary.  Later, when responding to Dr. Pusey's Eirenicon, which contained numerous examples of exaggerated practices and devotions to Mary, Newman made a clear distinction between the Church's doctrines and officially sanctioned prayers and practices, and the many expressions of popular devotions, sometimes questionable in taste and in theology.  "Belief is separate from devotion; belief is the same everywhere, whereas expressions of devotion differ from place to place."  Newman also noted that cultural differences become manifest in expressions of devotion, indicating that there exists a legitimate "English style" in the expression of devotion.  These distinctions between officially approved doctrine and devotion, and the many practices of popular devotion, which frequently reflect a cultural bias, have helped many along the journey of conversion.

Such was the experience of this famous convert and devotee of the Mother of the Redeemer.

Ronald A. Knox (1888-1957)

Another noteworthy English convert swayed by Mary's influence is Ronald Arbuthnot Knox, a brilliant scholar and classicist.  This Anglican clergyman embraced the Catholic Church in 1917, and was ordained a priest in 1919.  Widely hailed as "Rome's biggest catch after Newman," his book, A Spiritual Aeneid, ranks with Newman's Apologia as a classic and impressive conversion story.

His interest in Mary stems from his fascination with English heritage and his attraction to Anglo-Catholicism.  Among his earliest remembrances of the Blessed Virgin were his image on his school's coat of arms and the prayers used in the chapel services.

"Thus although I did not ask for her prayers, I had a strong sense of the patronage of the Mother of God.  Her name was part of our title; her lilies figure on our coat of arms; the blue of her robe you could easily see on the blazers of the Eight and the caps of the Eleven.  And perhaps, after all, in the wide sympathies of her compassionate heart there is a special place for her children at Eton.  I only know that it was the easiest thing in the world, on any of her feasts, to arrange for the singing at college prayers of that rather sentimental ancient and modern hymn which begins. 'Shall we not love thee, Mother dear.'"

Although his father opposed his enthusiasm for Anglo-Catholicism, young Knox spent one college vacation with a group of Anglican Benedictines who "went over to Rome en masse."  It was his fond hope as an Anglican that one day England would reclaim its Marian heritage: "England will once again become the dowry of Mary, and the Church of England will once again be built on the rock she was hewn from, and find a place, although it be a place of penitence and tears, in the eternal purposes of God."  In a sermon he delivered in 1913 he alluded to Mary's interest in what was once her country: "Mary ... has not forgotten her children just because they have run away from their school master, and unlearnt their lessons, and are trying to find their way home again, humbled and terrified in the darkness."  When ordained a deacon in the Anglican Church, he wrote: "I took a private vow, which I always kept, never to preach without making some reference to our Lady Mary, by way of satisfaction for the neglect of other preachers."

The Anglican Church's silence concerning Mary troubled Knox.  Even before his conversion he wrote:

"I cannot resist making an appeal to all those who are attached to ‘old-fashioned views’ of the person of our Savior, to reflect whether such views are afforded a proper devotional safeguard, so long as praises of, or prayers to, the Mother of God are either energetically repudiated or thrust away into a corner.  Ever since the Nestorian controversy, the divine mystery of the Theotokos has been regarded with special honor, in protest against incomplete theories of the Incarnation."

Once he left the Anglican Church and his post at Shrewsbury, he was aware of "the loneliness of a soul forced by conscientious motives to detach itself from loved surroundings and familiar friends and launch out into the deep."  At that time he recalled a line from Virgil's Aeneid "land showed no longer; all about was sky and sea."  He took the Latin words for sea and sky, mare and caelum, to represent Mary and heaven.  And he thought, "Perhaps I was not so lonely after all."

G. K. Chesterton (1874-1937)

One more renowned English convert of Marian significance is Gilbert Keith Chesterton.  A distinguished essayist, poet, novelist and outstanding apologist, Chesterton was raised in a family that did not share the typical Protestant antipathy toward the Virgin Mary.  "Our Lady was respected, though of course not invoked."

When a youngster, he turned into a poem for Mary the blasphemous lines of Algernon Swinburne's poem to the pagan queen of death.

"But I turn to her still, having seen she shall surely abide in the end.  Goddess and maiden and queen, be near me now and befriend."

A poem of his youth, The Nativity of Botticelli, attests, to his understanding of Mary's role in the Incarnation.

In a letter to Chesterton written in 1907, Hilaire Belloc suggested that he search for a "first certitude" on which everything else depends.  Belloc told Chesterton they agreed on two points: the Incarnation and Mary.  Belloc explained: "... in looking up to our dear Lady, the blessed Mother of God, I recommend to you that you suggest to her a comprehension for yourself, of what indeed is the permanent home of the soul.  If it is here, you will see it; if it is there, you will see it.  She never fails us.  She has never failed in my demand.  If you say 'I want this' as in your case to know one way or the other, she will give it you, as she will give health or necessary money or success in pure love.  She is our Blessed Mother."

His early writings, such as Orthodoxy (1908) and Ballad of the White Horse (1911), led others to anticipate his entry into the Catholic Church in 1922.  This final step was the result of a promise made at a Marian shrine in Italy.

Chesterton wrote in 1934 that Mary represented the "collective unity of Catholic life" about which Protestants had such strange notions.

"Now I can scarcely remember a time when the image of Our Lady did not stand up in my mind quite definitely at the mention of the thought of all these things.  I was quite distant from these things; and then doubtful about these things; and then disputing with the world for them, and with myself against them.  For that is the condition before conversion.  But when the figure was distant, or was dark and mysterious, or was scandal to my contemporaries, or was a challenge to myself, I never doubted that this figure was the figure of my faith; that she embodied, as a complete human being still only human, all that this thing has to say to humanity.  The instant I remembered the Catholic Church, I remembered her; when I tried to forget the Catholic Church, I tried to forget her."

When writing about Chaucer, he commented that devotion to Mary, "far from being a temporary malady from which one needed to be cured," was "generally chronic and (in some cases I have known) quite incurable."

Chesterton's Marian writings are found mainly in his poetry where he refers to the "seed of dogma and from that seed alone all that flowers of art and poetry and devotion spring."

One of his poems in The Queen of Seven Swords expressed his notion of the "wholeness" which underlies all expressions of devotion.

"In all thy thousand images we salute thee, claim and acclaim on all thy thousand thrones hewn out of multi-colored rocks and risen; stained with the stored-up sunsets in all tones--If in all tone and shades this shade I feel.  Come from the black cathedrals of Castille, claiming these flat black stones of Catalonia.  To thy most merciful face of night I kneel."

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Current Exhibit

Icons in Needle and Thread

The Marian Library Gallery is featuring With Needle and Thread, Beaded Portraits of Mother and Child, an exhibit of works by Nancy Goes, from September 6 - November 11 on the seventh floor of Roesch Library.  Hours are 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.  Monday through Friday, or with special arrangements by appointment.  Call 937-229-4214.  Click here for more information or here for a virtual exhibit.

N.B. We also have a permanent crèche exhibit and a dedicated online giving page specifically for those who wish to support The Marian Library crèche collections.

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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 originated east of Milan, Italy in 1983, and is now heard in fifty-four countries.  The main USA station is in Alexandria, Louisiana with affiliate stations across the USA [including FM 88.7, WHJM,  in Anna, Ohio (north of Dayton) and AM 1600, WULM, in Springfield/Dayton, Ohio.  All USA Radio Maria stations regularly air live Marian talks from UD's Marian Library every Wednesday from 12:00-1:00 pm EST and on Thursday and Friday from 2:30-3:00 pm EST, as well as local programming originating from many other affiliated Radio Maria stations in the USA.

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International Marian Research Institute Course Schedule

IMRI courses for the Fall 2011 semester will commence on October 10, 2011.

The Pontifical Academic Program leading to STL and STD in theology with a specialization in Marian Studies offers courses in three year-round sessions.  See our course offerings for Fall 2011 and beyond.

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In keeping with the season we suggest September Poetry.

We have revised and expanded our material in Chinese.  This is a work in progress, so expect more content soon.  Feel free to let us know what you think of this section.

We have posted the Call for Papers for the 2012 MSA Conference, updated Marian Thoughts of Benedict XVI through 8/31/2011, and revised our material on Icons.

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Retreat with Dr. Donald Charles Lacy

Title: An Ecumenical Affirmation: the Blessed Virgin Mary

Date: Saturday, October 1, 2011, 9 am - 4 pm

Location: John XXIII Retreat Center, Hartford City, Indiana

Spend the day enriching your experience of Mary in your life.  Led by Dr. Donald C. Lacy who perceives the Blessed Virgin Mary as the key to Christian Unity in our day.  Mary, he believes, is a blend of power and holiness, second only to her Son.  Her primary greatness lies in being chosen to be the Mother of Jesus and uniquely used to draw others to her Son in the unity of the Holy Spirit.  Dr. Lacy is a native Hoosier who has served as a United Methodist Minister across the state for more than fifty years.  He has spoken and written much about Mary and her place in the Christian faith.  Fee: $35  Register by 9/27/11

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Why Celebrate a Sorrowful Mother?
Reflection for the Feast of Our Lady of Sorrows
Source: Zenit (Steubenville, OH) September 14, 2011

Surely other world religions, and even some fellow members of Christianity, must look at the Catholic Church with a head scratching bewilderment as September 15 arrives and the Church celebrates the liturgical memorial of Our Lady of Sorrows.

Why would anybody celebrate the suffering of anybody else?  And, more specifically, why celebrate the terrible heartfelt sufferings of an innocent mother, who had to stand by and experience her son's public execution by crucifixion, still one of history's most grisly forms of death?

All authentic Christians will grant the necessity and efficacy of the sufferings of Jesus Christ to redeem the world.  Humanity could not save itself.  Humanity could not offer just compensation for its own sins, for to offend an infinite Creator is to commit an infinite offense.

Most Christians, therefore, understand in essence the September 14 feast of the 'triumph' of the Cross of Jesus.  For through his suffering, death, and resurrection, Satan is defeated, death loses its sting, and the gates of paradise are flung open to all who will receive the pass of the Passion.  That is something to celebrate.  But why the Sorrowful Mother?

Click here to read 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.

Ask a Marianist
Source: University of Dayton Magazine (Dayton, OH) Autumn, 2011

How busy can a brother be?  Right now, Brother Tom Pieper, S.M. '67, is filling in as resident campus minister at Marycrest while still ministering to the needs of Stuart Hall, where he has worked for fifteen years.

Question (from Robert Corgan): When was "Holy Mary, Mother of God ..." added to the "Hail Mary"?

Answer: The first parts are scripture from the Gospel of Saint Luke--Gabriel at the Annunciation and Mary and Elizabeth at the Visitation.  They were said by monks before the tenth and eleventh centuries.  In 1196, the Bishop of Paris ordered all the clergy to teach these Marian verses to all the people.  Why not add an intercession for all of us?  No one knows who wrote it but, by the 1500s, this intercession was already the tradition.

Click here for the complete article.

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Liturgical Season

Marian Commemoration Days

To celebrate the month of September 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 September.

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Prayer Corner

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 directly or to volunteer as a prayer partner for these intentions!

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The Mary Page website is updated frequently. Please stop in again and see what's in the news.

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