Mary in the News: Nov. 22, 2017

By Michael Duricy

Read recent items about Mary in both Catholic and secular news. Also see International Marian Research Institute news and updates.

ML/IMRI Features

Marian Events

Mary in the Catholic Press

Mary in the Secular Press

Marian Library/International Marian Research Institute Features


As Roesch Library begins a multi-year renovation, the At the Manger: World Nativity Traditions exhibit will take place on a smaller scale. The Grand Open House will not be held this year.

However, there is still a wonderful and robust exhibit of Nativities from Eastern Europe and Africa in the Marian Library. They are a must see! Also, many of our Nativities are on display at Mount St. John and Bergamo. And, special for 2017, we are opening our workshop to the public for a behind-the-scenes peek!

See all of the details, including hours and parking, by visiting go.udayton.edu/manger

Mary in Media: Books, Films, Music, etc.

New Animated Film on the First Christmas

The Star is a wonderful, hilarious, deeply reverential animated family movie centered on the birth of Jesus, but from the perspective of a lowly donkey named Bo. Bo and his best friend, Dave the dove, have dreams of joining the royal parade. When Bo escapes his owner's clutches, he finds himself accompanying a pregnant Mary and her husband, Joseph, on their way to Bethlehem. Bo may be a part of a bigger adventure than he expected. However, the evil King Herod has his top soldier looking for the pregnant Mary.

The Star is tremendous fun, with wonderful lessons along the way. A touching story from a unique perspective, The Star sets itself apart from many of the other nativity movies. Obviously, the movie condenses and shifts a few incidents found in the Bible, but never sacrifices a very strong biblical Christian theology. However, the movie deftly balances the goofy fun of the animals with a deeply redemptive reverence for God and the birth of Jesus Christ. Overall, The Star is almost void of objectionable content. It's a must-see Christmas movie for everyone.

Click here to read the complete review from Movieguide.


From the Marian Treasure Chest

Catechesis by Rosary by  Brother John Samaha, S.M.

At Fatima, as at Lourdes before, Our Lady asked the children to pray the rosary, then she prayed the rosary with the seers and taught them how to do so devoutly.

Consider the rosary as a catechetical tool. This thought arises from many bishops and lay catechists and all the religious and lay educator groups in between.

Religious educators and parents often comment that many today--youth and adults--are lacking in Christian formation. A certain religious illiteracy has infiltrated the family, school, and society in general. Children, especially, lack a strong basic understanding of fundamentals of our faith and of how to pray. The challenge is clear for catechists at all age levels. In addition, we must remember that faith and virtue are caught more than taught. We must model what we teach. We must echo Christ; resound faith, hope, and charity by walking the talk.

Catechists and parents often seek new methods, programs, and books of religious instruction, and we are at a loss for knowing any. But one sure-fired and time-tested method is centuries old, tried and true, and easy to handle--the rosary.

If youngsters and adults learn the rosary, they are learning the basics of the Christian faith as well as learning how to pray. They would know from memory the Apostles' Creed, the Our Father, the Hail Mary, and the Glory Be--the latter three lifted literally from the Gospel. By praying the rosary they would be reviewing the fundamental truths handed on by Jesus and practicing the art of praying. By teaching the rosary we help others to learn that prayer is simple, Biblical, done in union with our Mother Mary, and leads us to become absorbed in the mysteries of the life of Christ and of salvation history.

To know how to pray the twenty mysteries of the rosary means that we know the basics about the life of Jesus and His teachings--His life, passion, death, resurrection, and ascension; the meaning of Jesus' Incarnation and Redemption. This challenges us to ponder what these mysteries mean for us today. In reality, the rosary is a compendium of the Gospel. It is the Gospel strung on beads.

The rosary is not a panacea. It does not solve all the challenges of catechesis and faith formation. But it is one effective catechetical tool for teaching and praying. In the past, noted saints and teachers have utilized it successfully. It worked for St. Dominic and his companions in combating the Albigensian heresy in his day.

Let’s try again.


Marian Events

Theme: The Bible and the Virgin Mary

Date: December 3, 2017 (starting date)

Reclaim Your Advent with The Bible and the Virgin Mary from the Saint Paul Center for Biblical Theology.

Advent can be stressful for many reasons, but it should be about preparation: Advent is our chance to prepare for Jesus' arrival at Christmas.

This Advent, make time to grow in your faith--to ready your hearts for the arrival of our Lord and Savior. And who better to prepare with than Mary?

Join host Matthew Leonard as he leads you through this beautiful study that examines the biblical basis for everything Catholics believe about Mary.

The free online study begins on December 3, 2017 and will continue through the end of the year. Sign up now to participate in this beautiful and exciting Bible study.


Mary in the Catholic Press

Christmas Concert Returns to the Vatican (Zenit website) November 21, 2017

The 2017 Christmas Concert will be held again in the Vatican this year on December 16. The funds collected will be allocated to educational projects for young people and children: one of the Don Bosco Foundation in the World and another of the organization of pontifical right, Scholas Occurrentes.

In the presentation event, held on Monday, November 20, in the Marconi Room of Vatican Radio, Jose Maria del Corral, President of Scholas Occurrents, announced that in the first semester of 2018, the first meeting will be held in the Vatican of young people victims of bullying and cyber-bullying, and an Observatory will be established against bullying.

The Congregation for Catholic Education is sponsoring the initiative. Its Secretary, Archbishop Angelo Vincenzo Zani, pointed out: "Our dicastery is concerned with education and, usually, doesn't sponsor cultural events. However, to have a secure peace, it's necessary to invest in education," to generate a "culture of hospitality and fraternity...."

Click here to read the entire article.

Mary in the Secular Press

The director and editors of All About Mary 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.

The Transformation of the Virgin Mary: How a Jewish Girl From Nazareth Became a Christian Icon (huffingtonpost.com) November 12, 2017

The four Gospels--Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John--provide skimpy biographies of Jesus, with huge time gaps. We meet Jesus in brief citations as a newborn, a six-year-old in Egypt about to return to Nazareth, a twelve-year-old at the Temple in Jerusalem, and at age thirty, when His spiritual mission begins as He is baptized by John the Baptist. Not much fodder for a reliable psychological profile….

The New Testament tells us even less about Jesus' mother, Mary. We first meet teenage Mary when she is visited by the Angel Gabriel and told that she will conceive and bear a child by the power of the Holy Ghost (Luke 1:26-35; Matthew 1:18-25). Despite Mary's pregnancy, Joseph, a Jewish carpenter to whom she is betrothed, accepts her (Matthew 1:24). Next, Mary visits her cousin Elizabeth, who is pregnant in her old age in answer to the prayers of her pious husband, Zacharias, a priest in the Jerusalem Temple (Luke 1:38-40)….

Who was Mary? What was she like in her daily life? What were her beliefs and personal qualities? We can speculate--as many have--but known biblical sources give us little information to go on. We could learn more about a casual acquaintance than we know about Mary by posing the simple request: "tell me something about yourself."

However, one aspect of Mary's life consistently stands out in the Gospels: She is a dedicated practicing Jew....

I wish that art historians, curators, and art critics would follow Pope Francis' lead and finally acknowledge the falsification of biblical history in artworks that denied the Jewish identities of Jesus and Mary.

In excruciatingly detailed commentaries on artworks by professionals in the field the glaring feature of identity theft is almost never noted. Doing so would take nothing away from the magnificence of these works and their contribution to the development and enhancement of art and culture. But it would contribute to a long-overdue participation in the reconciliation of Christianity and Judaism. It would affirm the two sides of the Jesus and Mary story: Jesus and Mary the dedicated Jews and Jesus and Mary whose lives inspired a new religion.

Click here to read the article.


Previous Post

IMRI Weekly Features: Nov. 20, 2017

The Feast of the Presentation of Mary is November 21. Prepare for this feast and discover more about the life of Mary by reading this featured content.
Read More
Next Post

IMRI Weekly Features: Nov. 27, 2017

Look for Advent resources and a link to an online view of the cr?che collection. There are many items to check out this week!
Read More