The month of May is traditionally Mary’s month and this issue has a pair of articles related to our Blessed Mother. An extract from Pope Pius XII’s letter to the French on the centenary of the shrine at Lourdes brings up a few practical suggestions for fighting materialism, surely today’s major enemy. Elsewhere, following last month’s look at the shrine in Einsiedeln we move this month to Argentina, to their national shrine which is just outside Buenos Aires and very close to the Society’s seminary at La Reja, Our Lady of Lujan. Two priests from the district have already visited this shrine this year! But for most people outside South America our Lady of Lujan is an unknown quantity. Devotion to the Mother of God is one of the major areas of devotion which suffered in the wake of the disastrous Second Vatican Council (the other is the Mass, obviously). Observers of the council were regaled with a sad procession of Latin American bishops beating their breasts and lamenting the strength of devotion of their peoples to their holy Patroness. The Feast of the Holy Name of Mary was duly abolished, many of the feasts too and a catastrophic drop in devotion to the Rosary has led to the miserable and wretched state of the world as we see it today. Nonetheless, it is God’s plan that the world will yet be saved, though very late in the day, by the triumph of our Lady’s immaculate heart. To help bring this about we who are still faithful to the Church’s teaching must strengthen our own devotion to our Blessed Mother and pass it on to our children.

The next in the series of Fr. Crees’s articles encouraging logical thought about a range of anti-Catholic prejudices moves on to the consideration of Sacred Scripture. The depth of ignorance about the history and origins of the Bible is great even among Protestants who claim Scripture as their unique source of revelation. It would be sad if Catholics shared this ignorance to the extent that, when confronted with the same, tired old arguments against Church teaching, they are unable to refute them. Hopefully this article will be a start and inspire many Catholics not only to do their homework regarding the background to Scripture but to read the inspired texts themselves.

The staff of Nova et Vetera wish all our readers a prayerful month of May in the company of Our Lady, a joyous Ascensiontide and a blessed Whitsuntide at the end of the month