Mary Page News

September 29, 1998

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.

Our Lady of the Rosary October 7
Rosary References
She Returned to My Soul -- A Story
Other Moments of the Christian Sunday

Our Lady of the Rosary October 7

The Feasts of Mary The origins of this feast lie in the 16th century when the Christian armies of Europe won a number of victories over the Muslim Turks. While the battles raged, the people of Rome prayed the rosary. In thanksgiving for the victory of the Christian navies at Lepanto, October 5, 1571, the day was dedicated to Our Lady of Victory. The name was soon changed to Our Lady of the Rosary. Catholics today do not celebrate this victory, but rather give thanks for the gift of the rosary. Because of this feast, the month of October has been dedicated to the rosary.

Quoted from Robert M. Hamma, Catholic Update St. Anthony Messenger Press, 1992.

Rosary References for October

On October 7th, the Catholic Church celebrates a memorial liturgy in honor of Mary as Our Lady of the Rosary. October has also been traditionally known as the month of the Rosary. Mary Page wishes to provide resources on the rosary. If you use Mary Page's search engine, you will find the rosary mentioned in 91 documents. We recommend the following:

International Journey of the Rosary
Invitation to all religious movements of the world to join and participate in the International Journey of the Rosary to be celebrated on October 31, 1998.

Mary Page encourages this initiative to make October 31 a great day of rosary prayer across the world.

For more information, see< P> You can also receive a detailed e-mail about this event at

Our Lady's Rosary Makers

"Give me an army saying the rosary and I will conquer the world" (Pius XI)

In 1949, the late Brother Sylvan, CFX, organized a crusade of volunteers "to chain a world supply of rosaries." His work resulted in an organization known as Our Lady's Rosary Makers. Literally, millions of rosaries have been crafted, especially for the poor, by Our Lady's Rosary Makers since 1949. The following information is taken from their literature:

Since most of the world is poor, rosaries in the mission field are rare and cheaply made. When a cheaply made rosary breaks, devotion to the rosary is often discontinued; no rosary means no devotion. That is why thousands of people throughout the U.S. have joined Brother's Crusade, and are now using their spare time to "arm" the world with rosaries rather than with bombs. Over 1,000,000 rosaries are given annually to the poor. ...

All of this is made possible because members can receive an unlimited supply of rosary materials from Club Headquarters for only a few pennies per rosary, or at about one-half the manufacturing cost.

Rosary makers are asked not to sell the mission rosary. If you would like to receive the catalog and information from Our Lady's Rosary Makers, write or call:

Our Lady's Rosary Makers
4611 Poplar Level Road
PO Box 37080
Louisville, Kentucky 40233
Tel: 502-968-1434

Unfinished Resources

Mary Page has resources available for those who are patient with our pages that are still under construction. We have nearly finished an entire archive on Marian music, including contemporary hymns. You can find the initial work under:

Marian Music Index

A second resource nearly ready covers many themes on the Blessed Virgin Mary found in magisterial documents of the Church. Mary's relationship to the Blessed Trinity, Mary and the Church, Mary as a human person, Marian devotion are but a few of these resource titles. You will find this site at:

Marian Themes in Magisterial Documents

She Retuned to My Soul A Story

During my childhood, Mary's place wasn't insignificant. Her image a simple, unpainted clay statue of the mother with the Child stood in the most beautiful corner of our living room, on a stand by the dark, wood-paneled wall in corner fitted with an old-fashioned table and benches. I couldn't say anymore if we gathered there often in prayer. I only remember the stormy nights as children when nothing took away our fear as much as the unwaveringly monotony of the rosary, which at other times seemed to be awfully boring to me. But in the turbulence of the storm-filled world it was a calming exorcism that could be trusted to restore order.

Our Mary left her spot only twice during the year: At Christmastime she made room for the brightly colored shepherds, kings and angels that danced around the Holy Family in our paper nativity scene. She moved out in May, too, where she took her place in a niche of the balcony. Decorated with flowers, she greeted and reflected the springtime sun.

We grew older, more serious, and "more enlightened" we children, the parents, the Church. The new mood after the council and the first television in the house changed our customary life. The paper nativity set was replaced with a simple and much more tasteful set of three figurines, so that my fantasy and enthusiasm could only be kindled by the gifts on the table and no longer on the wonderworld of the stable. The time of the May altar was also gone. Spring simply came without name and face.

Ultimately, in the framework of modern life, when our corner table and benches and the paneled wall disappeared, so did our Mary. First she went into exile in our parents' bedroom where she stood on a dresser, got pushed more and more back toward the wall, until you finally couldn't see her. Someone must have taken her down from there sometime later, carefully wrapped her up and pushed her under the bed. We found her there later when my parents moved.

Many years lay between then and now. My hair grew longer and longer and when my parents finally accepted my head, I cut it short again. I protested against going to church because my parents wanted me to, and when my parents with heavy hearts finally gave in, I began to go with them again, although I went because I wanted to.

I began to study theology with critical but also growing enthusiasm. Mary certainly wasn't one of the themes. She wasn't listed in the theological studies' course options, and I didn't miss her. I finished my exams, got a position in adult education, and with it the chance to get to know for, from and with people of very different ages, different backgrounds and different points of view was faith and life have to do with one another. And I learned above all to believe, not only with my mind, but from the depths of my soul.

And not my mind, but my soul saw Mary again. With my own child in my arms, I discovered the mother with the Child, and we shared our joy. And speechless in the face of the pain and sorrow of life's shattered plans, I stood before the Pieta at an old pilgrimage place as if looking in a mirror.

So she came back, first in my soul, then in my four walls. Suddenly she was there, just the same as ever. I found her between wine crates and books in the storeroom at my last visit to my parents. She was still wrapped in an old dusty cover. And now she stands on the window sill. She looks down the lane and welcomes, and I suspect that even my neighbor, a Lutheran pastor, smiles at her.

Mary came back to my soul and my house. Maybe she was never gone. And she comes to mind again. I think about her, about what her image has given to people for centuries. I don't see the Mary of dogmatics or of the apparitions, and certainly not of the new feminist theology, although Dorothee Sölle makes me realize that Mary is "acceptable" again. The Mary on my window sill, in my soul and from my childhood days is the Mary of the painter, the poets and the mothers. And my "undogmatic" meditations about her are neither meant to be historical nor critical, They are not so much explanations as shy, furtive declarations of love. Novalis wrote:

"Mary, I see you lovingly expressed in a thousand images,
Yet none of them can describe you as my soul sees you."

I will write, not of thousands, but only of three images, three Marian images. I see Mary as an image of the Church, a very different, not triumphal Church. She shows me the image of life that is stronger than the many dead. The image of God that we forgot or drove out when we banned the Lord God and all the lords who founded their kingdoms in his name, takes shape in her. These three images are conscious in my mind not just as a beginning, the beginning of a personal re-discovery and an invitation, to seek, to discover and to love the thousand images of Mary in our souls.

From: Heinrich Dickerhoff, Ich sehe dich in tausend Bildern. Eine kleine Marienkunde.Basis, 5/98.

Other Moments of the Christian Sunday

In the recent encyclical on the The Lord's Day (Dies Domini), Pope John Paul II speaks of others uses of the Sunday. Trips to Marian shrines are among his suggestions. See below:

52. Sharing in the Eucharist is the heart of Sunday, but the duty to keep Sunday holy cannot be reduced to this. In fact, the Lord's Day is lived well if it is marked from beginning to end by grateful and active remembrance of God's saving work. This commits each of Christ's disciples to shape the other moments of the day those outside the liturgical context: family life, social relationships, moments of relaxation in such a way that the peace and joy of the Risen Lord will emerge in the ordinary events of life. For example, the relaxed gathering of parents and children can be an opportunity not only to listen to one another but also to share a few formative and more reflective moments. Even in lay life, when possible, why not make provision for special times of prayer especially the solemn celebration of Vespers, for example or moments of catechesis, which on the eve of Sunday or on Sunday afternoon might prepare for or complete the gift of the Eucharist in people's hearts?

This rather traditional way of keeping Sunday holy has perhaps become more difficult for many people; but the Church shows her faith in the strength of the Risen Lord and the power of the Holy Spirit by making it known that, today more than ever, she is unwilling to settle for minimalism and mediocrity at the level of faith. She wants to help Christians to do what is most correct and pleasing to the Lord. And despite the difficulties, there are positive and encouraging signs. In many parts of the Church, a new need for prayer in its many forms is being felt; and this is a gift of the Holy Spirit. There is also a rediscovery of ancient religious practices, such as pilgrimages; and often the faithful take advantage of Sunday rest to visit a Shrine where, with the whole family perhaps, they can spend time in a more intense experience of faith. These are moments of grace which must be fostered through evangelization and guided by genuine pastoral wisdom.

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