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In the News: Nov. 28, 2016

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


Last Chance to Respond to the Call for Papers for the 2017 Annual Meeting of the Ecumenical Society of the Blessed Virgin Mary--USA!

ESBVM-USA July 2017 Conference Call for Papers

The Ecumenical Society of the Blessed Virgin Mary USA (ESBVM USA) exists to advance the study of Mary, the Mother of Christ, in Christian biblical and spiritual perspectives, and in the light of such study, to promote ecumenical interchange and prayer. Its aim is to show that in Mary, Christians of many traditions may find a focus in their search for unity. The ESBVM was formed by Catholic, Anglican, Methodist, Orthodox, and Presbyterian Scholars and is open to all Christians.

PROPOSAL DUE DATE: December 1, 2016

Conference Theme:  "Mary, Disciple of the Lord: Prayer and Holiness"

Conference Dates: July 12 – 15, 2017 (Wed. evening through Sat. morning).

Conference Location:  Misericordia University in Dallas, PA (near Scranton)

Submission Guidelines and Requirements:

The paper proposal should be in DOC or DOCX and must include:

    Presentation Title

    Presenter's name, professional affiliation (e.g., university or church name), and status (undergrad, grad. student, Ph.D. candidate, faculty, pastor, etc.)

    Contact information (e-mail address, daytime telephone)

    Abstract (350-500 words)

    Equipment needs.

The overall theme for the conference is "Mary, Disciple of the Lord: Prayer and Holiness." This theme may be approached through a variety of avenues appropriate to your field of study, interests, and particular Christian tradition. The following are some suggestions for different scriptural, systematic, anthropological, liturgical, artistic or historical approaches to help get you started. This is not an exhaustive list, so please feel free to add to it.

  Scriptural study of Mary's "pondering" in Luke 2:19 or the Magnificat in Luke 1:46-55

  Historical or systematic study of writings by the Early Church Fathers on Mary and prayer, holiness, and the interior life

  Historical study of Mary as a model of prayer and holiness in a particular tradition, such as Anglicanism

  The thoughts of Protestant reformers on Mary as a holy example

  Contemporary developments in Protestant thought and practice regarding Mary as an example of holiness for Christians, new Lutheran Marian feast days,  or ecumenical Marian celebrations such as those at the shrine in Walsingham, England on the Feast of the Assumption

  Commentary on a particular contemporary theologian or author who wrote about Marian prayer and/or Mary as an example of holiness

  The theology of particular Marian prayers

  Marian references in the liturgy

  Mary as teacher of prayer and advancement in the interior life for contemporary society

  Mary's holiness as portrayed in the visual, performing, or literary arts

Please submit proposals to the review committee at

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

New Marian Broadcasts on the Internet

Father Javier Alson, S.M.C., and Father Antonio Larocca, S.M.C., from the Semacom Foundation, are starting a new Spanish-language Marian radio channel on the internet. For more information or to listen to the live stream, click into La Voz Mariana Radio.


From the Marian Treasure Chest

Advent: Season of Anticipation by Brother John Samaha, S.M.

The season of Advent has a twofold character, a double meaning. Advent prepares us for Christmas, the celebration of Christ's first coming to us. And it also reminds us to direct our minds and hearts to be prepared for Christ's second coming at the end of time.

In Christian usage the word "advent" (adventus) has a special liturgical significance, but the origin of the word is pagan.

At the time of Jesus' birth the pagans observed a manifestation of their pagan divinity that came to dwell in its temple at a certain time each year. This pagan feast was called advent, and it marked an anniversary of the return of their pagan god to the temple. During this special time the temple was open.  Ordinarily the temple was closed.

In the days of the Roman emperor, advent also celebrated the coming of the emperor.

The word "advent" was suitable to describe the coming of the Son of God in the temple of His flesh. Gradually the use of this word was limited to describe the coming of the Lord. This advent, the coming of the Lord and the anniversary of His birth, replaced the advent and birth of the unvanquished sun of the winter solstice. This use of the word "advent" gained prominence during the reign of the Emperor Constantine (306-337). To grant tolerance to all religions and to allow the open practice of Christianity, he issued the Edict of Milan in 313. As Christian feasts were adopted and celebrated, pagan festivals were soon replaced and forgotten.

The ancient idea of advent underlies the prayers of Advent that call forth the coming of the Lord, often with the same image of the temple.

Now Advent signals a time to prepare for Christmas, the celebration of the first coming of the Lord. But the prayer texts and Scripture readings of the Sunday Masses and the Liturgy of the Hours give ample attention to the second coming of the Lord to which we look forward.

In reality the three distinct accents of the Liturgy of the Advent season are defined by the three comings of the Lord: yesterday, at Bethlehem, when the Son of God was born of the Virgin Mary; today, in our world, where He is incarnate in the Church, in the sacraments, and in the faithful baptized into grace; tomorrow, when He returns in glory.

This, then, is the rich meaning of Advent. From the beginning of the liturgical year we celebrate the whole panorama of the mystery of salvation history.

The variety of this season is not only desirable, it is truly appropriate because Advent is oriented toward the one who has come once for all, who is coming, and who will come.


Marian Events

Dayton Film Screening Event (Saint Joseph Church Bulletin) October 30, 2016

A few years ago, the independent film, The Triumph, was screened in the area and was a big success. Now, from the same Director, comes a new feature film called Apparition Hill about an unlikely group of pilgrims who journey to the little-known village of Medjugorje. Two screenings remain available at The Neon: Thursday, December 8, 2016 at 7:30 pm; and Monday, December 12, 2016 at 7:30 pm. Tickets are $10 each and available online only at All proceeds benefit the 4Mary Youth Pilgrimage to Fatima in 2017. For more information contact by email.


Mary in the Catholic Press

Pope Praying Chinese Catholics Will Always See God's Presence (Zenit) May 22, 2016

Pope Francis is praying that Chinese Catholics might be aided by Our Lady to discern in every situation the "signs of the loving presence of God."

The Pope invited the faithful to make this prayer when he mentioned today after praying the mid-day Angelus the upcoming feast of Our Lady Help of Christians (May 24), which is celebrated at the Shrine of Our Lady of Sheshan in Shanghai.

The Church since 2007 has marked the day as a World Day of Prayer for the Church in China....

Click here to read the complete 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.

Pope Francis Receives CCCB Presidency in Private Audience ( website) November 14, 2016

On November 10, 2016, Pope Francis received in a private audience the delegation from the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops (CCCB): the Most Reverend Douglas Crosby, O.M.I., Bishop of Hamilton and CCCB President, the Most Reverend Lionel Gendron, P.S.S., Bishop of Saint-Jean-Longueuil and CCCB Vice President, together with Msgr. Frank Leo, Jr., C.S.S., CCCB General Secretary. The CCCB Presidency is in Rome until November 16 for its annual visit with a number of dicasteries of the Holy See.

Click here to read the complete article.


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