Mary Page News

April 13, 1999

 Mary Page News items give insight into our interest areas, our outreach, and the myriad ways people honor Our Lady. We welcome your input and your comments. Features

Looking for Religious Items?
Italian Poetry by Pasolini
Smallest Nativity Scene
Guinness Book of Records
New Marian Shrine in Africa
Canonization of the Marist Brothers' Founder
Guide to Catholic USA
Sri Lanka: Shrine of Virgin Mary Source of National Unity
Papal Mariological Award
Cincinnati Exhibit: Visual Prayers

Looking for Religious Items?

 Religio 2000: An exceptional exhibition for an exceptional event! From February 5 - 7, 2000, an International Professional Exhibition for Articles of Worship and Christian Church Services will take place at the Paris-Expo, Porte de Versailles, in Paris.

An indication of the extent of the exhibition, possibly the world's largest in religious items, can be judged by the Religio 99 exhibition, which hosted 486 exhibitors in Paris, including 173 from 28 other countries. The exhibitors offered items from individual artists and monastic craftsmanship, as well as religious jewelry, gifts, objects, candles, votive lights, incense, cards, construction and interior design, publishing, furniture, multimedia, music and sound publishing, articles of worship, Christian organizations, paintings, icons, pilgrimages and religious tourism, press, radio, services, bells, telephones, statues, sculptures, vestments, textiles and stained glass.

 To keep abreast of what is being offered in the field, a periodical entitled Religio Presse in French, English, and Spanish is published quarterly. The subscription for any country is 80 FF per year. You can read more information about Religio Presse and Religio 2000 on the Internet at: The Internet site provides a World Directory for Christian Suppliers. For each supplier, a full form with address, phone, fax, name of manager, products and activity. There are 825 suppliers from 32 countries as of December 10,1998. You can research by the name, by country, or by professional entry.

A sampling from Religio Presse Nr. 15:

France The monks and nuns of the Sainte Lioba Abbey, diocese of Aix en Provence, presented works of art of their SAINT GERMAIN monastic workshops. The stand presented fully hand woven liturgical ornaments in natural silk and gold thread.

Portugal A family company near Fatima, Farportugal, mainly manufactures rosaries devoted to Our Lady of Fatima, as well as religious statues made of polystyrene, and wooden crosses.

Italy A rosary created by the Italian company, Moky Gioielli / Di Nardi, has created a new item called the "rosary of the third millennium."

In addition to these items, there is information about places of pilgrimages, tours, and much, more.

Italian Poetry by Pasolini

[photograph of
Pasolini] Mary Page recently added a selection of Marian poems written by Italian poet, Pier Paolo Pasolini, to our Marian Poetry Index [under Resources]. These poems are reproduced in the original Italian language as published in 1958 as "L'Usignolo della Chiesa cattolica" [or "The Nightingale of the Catholic Church]. We include seven poems on the Passion of Christ, three on the Annunciation to Mary and several inspired by the Litany of Loreto. These are preceded by a brief introduction written by Fr. Johann Roten. Pasolini was also a well-respected director of cinema. His "Gospel according to St Matthew" (1964) is among the finest Life of Christ films ever made.

 You will find the poetry at Pier Paolo Pasolini's Marian Poems

Smallest Nativity Scene Guinness Book of Records

The Holy Family in Half a Grape Seed

 That is the title of a newspaper article that appeared on page 10 of a German newspaper on December 1998! The paper, Neue Bildpost, reported that the smallest nativity scene in the world was created by sculptor, Wendelin Sperl, of Luhe in the upper Pfalz region of Germany. Sperl used his wife's glasses to carve the minuscule figures in half a grape seed. The figures are between 0.8 and 1.9 millimeters large. Special instruments were used to record the measurements. Sperl received his document from the editors Guinness Book of Records shortly before Christmas last year. Sperl is noted for his figures in hazelnuts, apple seeds and other miniature works.

New Marian Shrine in Africa

 A large Marian shrine on the African continent will be erected in the diocese of Dass- Zoumé in southeast Benins. For years, pilgrims from Nigers, Nigeria, Burkina Faso and Togo have traveled to the Marian grotto at Arigbo. The church for the pilgrims is being partially financed by papal funding and with the assistance of the Italian bishops' conference. It will be 72 meters long, 62 meters wide and 47 meters in height. The interior will have space for 3000 pilgrims. A roofed square will give an additional 1000 pilgrims cover from the sun. Seating for fifty concelebrating priests is planned for the sanctuary.

In October 1998, the cornerstone a large stone from the Roman basilica, St. Mary Major bearing the inscription Notre Dame d'Arigbo de Dassa-Zoumé, was laid by Curia Cardinal Bernardin Gantin and by Bishop Antoine Gnayé von Dass- Zourmé. [Source: Maria, February/March 1999]

Canonization of the Marist Brothers' Founder

 Blessed Marcellin Champagnat (1789-1840), Founder of the Marist School Brothers, will be canonized on April 18, 1999 by Pope John Paul II. The Marist founder was deeply devoted to the Blessed Virgin Mary, from whence the title of the congregation derives.

The Liguori Guide to Catholic USA

 The Liguori Guide to Catholic USA
A Treasure of Churches, Schools, Monuments, Shrines, and Monasteries

A cornucopia of fascinating details, this book provides histories and descriptions of each of the locations profiled, as well as addresses, telephone numbers, and more than 50 photos.

 Collectively, these sites tell the story of Catholicism in the United States. Covering both popular and lesser-known sites across the country, this guide takes you to more than 500 locations from all parts of the country.

 Mary Page is pleased to note that The University of Dayton's Marian Library is mentioned on p. 167 of the book.

 The cover to the left: Top Left: Chapel at Carmel, Louisiana. Top Right: Mother Seton House, Baltimore, Maryland. Bottom Left: St. Mary's Mission, Montana. Bottom Right: Our Lady of the Snows, Yosemite Valley, Yosemite National Park, California.


 Mary Page is pleased to announce a brand new format to its Calendar of Marian Events. You will find a map of the United States listing a variety of events and also a compendium of international events. Click on your state or any state to see what's happening. Want to leave your state and go on an international pilgrimage? Click on pilgrimages.



See Calendar of Marian Events:

Sri Lanka: Shrine of Virgin Mary Source of National Unity

 The followinig article appeared on the Zenit Daily Dispatch - March 30, 1999, which is forward to The Marian Library by


Christians, Buddhists and Hindus Venerate Our Lady at Madhu
MADHU, MAR 30 (ZENIT).- According to the international agency 'Fides,' Catholics in Sri Lanka are hoping for a miracle of national peace from Our Lady of the Rosary at Madhu shrine, 300 km north of the capital, Colombo. After prolonged fighting last week in the area between army and Tamil Tiger rebels, government forces finally took control of the zone, which includes a 17th century Dutch colonial period church. This was regarded as a sign of hope for the future. Now the possibility exists for renewing the country's most important festival and, perhaps, bringing an end to the civil war.

In Sri Lanka, Buddhists are in the majority. The Madhu shrine is known throughout the country; Hindus and Buddhists, as well as Catholics, flock to the shrine to make vows to Our Lady, whose statue is thought to have miraculous healing powers. The Catholic bishops hope that the nation's faith in Mary will help reunite the country, heal ethnic wounds, and, if possible, put an end to the Tamil separatist war, which has lasted 27 years and claimed more than 55,000 lives.

'Fides' reports that Madhu has provided refugee camps for 25,000 people, who were fleeing the fighting between rebels and the army. Most of the refugees are Hindus; they are in a minority in the country as a whole, but a majority in the northeast of the island.

There are no religious tensions between Catholics and Hindus in Sri Lanka, because all respect the Church. Moreover, Our Lady of the Rosary of Madhu draws the north and the south together, since she is venerated by the minority Tamils in the north, and the majority Sinhalese in the south. ZE99033020

Visit the Zenit web page at
To subscribe

Papal Mariological Award

 Dr. Deyanira Flores Gonzales, professor of the seminary for the diocese of San Jose, Costa Rica and professor at the International Marian Research Institute in Dayton, Ohio, received the papal award in Mariological for her work entitled, La Virgen Maria al pie de la Cruz (John 19, 25-27) en Ruperto Deutz. Pope John Paul II presented the award at the Vatican on November 7, 1998. He stated at the presentation:

Dear Brothers and Sisters, accepting the proposal made by the Co-ordinating Council of the Pontifical Academies, I am pleased now to give the Pontifical Acadamies Award to Dr. Deyanira Flores Gonzales of Costa Rica for her work in Mariology entitled: La Virgen Maria al pie de la Cruz (John 19, 25-27) en Ruperto Deutz, presented at the Pontifical Theological Faculty Marianum."

Cincinnati Exhibit: Visual Prayers

 An exhibit by Sister Mary Grace Thull, O.P., held at The Marian Library/International Marian Research Institute from September 1 - October 23, 1998 will be shown again at the Mater Ecclesia Institute in Cincinnati, Ohio from May 16 - May 30, 1999. The exhibit will feature a new woodcut never before exhibited entitled, "Despised of the Earth; Images of Christ," which depicts Christ surrounded by homeless persons living with AIDS. Another new woodcut was created for the National Catholic Office for Persons with Disabilities in Washington, DC. Entitled "Disabled Simons, Sustained and Sustaining," it images people in various states of disability who, by joyfully and courageously accepting their impairments in union with Christ carrying the Cross, are both sustained in the suffering they must bear and are sustaining the whole Church and indeed the whole world.

 Marer Ecclesia Institute
3020 Erie Avenue
Cincinnati, Ohio 45208-2406

 To view works of Sr. Mary Grace Thull, O.P. see Visual Prayers

50th Anniversary Mariological Society of America
Conference Information

Helps for the Easter Season

Meditations for Easter Season

Mary and God the Father

 Mary Page continues to publish a compendium of Marian themes that have surfaced in magisterial documents from Vatican II to the present. The first set of themes correspond to the Year of God our Father as recommended by Pope John Paul II in preparation for the turn of the millennium. This and the next few week's theme, Mary and God the Father, is a main trinitarian theme with various sub-themes. Information on the sources is also given in cross reference pages. You will find this resource at:

Mary and God the Father: Mother of God

Prayer Corner Requests

 You are invited to help us pray for our prayer corner intentions.

Prayer Corner

The intentions of the Holy Father for April 1999:

Return to The Mary Page

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