Mary Page News

April 8, 1997

Mary Page is a link to a variety of information. The items give insight into our interest areas, our outreach, and the myriad ways people honor Our Lady. We welcome your input and your comments.

New Acquisition for the Marian Library
Russia's Postal Service Honors the Blessed Virgin Mary
Lourdes - Gathering Place of Youth


New Acquisition for the Marian Library

[Annunciation]Annunciation
Kevin Hanna, 1996

The Marian Library
International Marian Research Institute
recently received Kevin Hanna's Annunciation.
It now welcomes you upon arrival
at our institute.


Russia's Postal Service Honors the Blessed Virgin Mary

[Our
Lady of
Kazan] Did you know that the Russian postal service published a special edition stamp, beginning on September 10, 1996, which depicts the icon of the Mother of God of Kazan? The stamp shows the beautiful ancient icon and an ornate incensor.

According to experts, the image of Our Lady of Kazan originates in the 13th century. The icon, a painting on wood, is said to have originally come from Constantinople. In 1209 the Tartars besieged the city and made it the residence of the Khan. During this period there is no mention to be found about the icon. It is not until after the liberation of Kazan that the icon is again found mentioned on historical records.

[Our Lady of
Kazan] The Rizza, crafted ca. 1600 and covering the entire icon except for the heads of the Virgin and Child, contains over a 1000 jewels contributed by the faithful in thanksgiving for favors granted.

The legends report that Mary appeared in a dream to a young girl of Kazan and told the girl where an icon of her image was buried in the ground. The image was found where the girl said it would be. In 1595, after the unearthing of the image, the Archbishop of Kazan established a memorial day on July 8 as a feast in honor of the Mother of God of Kazan.

The icon weathered wars and occupation throughout a troubled history, but again and again it remained the most revered icon of the Russian people. The Russian troops greeted Our Lady of Kazan as the liberator of Russia, especially after the war and victory over Sweden. In 1713, the capitol of Russia was moved from Moscow to St. Petersburg. The czar, Peter the Great, ordered the icon brought from Kazan to the new capitol.

During the 1917 revolution, Our Lady of Kazan disappeared. Suspicion had it that the icon was taken to England and from there to Boston, where it remained unnoticed. Unexpectedly, the icon came to light during an art auction during the years 1960-1970. Fortunately, members of the Fatima Apostolate obtained the icon. In 1970, the icon of Our Lady of Kazan was taken to Fatima.

There it took over twenty years until Mary's announcement to the children of Fatima was actualized, that Russia would convert and her Immaculate Heart would triumph. Two years ago, the icon of Our Lady of Kazan was returned to the people of Russia.


Lourdes - Gathering Place of Youth

Lourdes, under the care of the Oblates, has become more and more an international gathering place for young people. In 1996, 400,000 young people visited Lourdes and participated in functions specially geared to the young. 30,000 alone took part in liturgies and prayer services sponsored by the Oblates last year. Part of the program is to help young people to understand the significance of Lourdes and of private devotion to Mary. Every Saturday evening, there is a Mass specially organized with youth in mind. Many young people make use of the sacrament of reconciliation for the first time when they visit Lourdes. Last year, 18,000 young people from 32 nations were received in the Youth Village of Lourdes.


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