When, early in 1948, I published THE STUMBLING BLOCK in the first issues of LA TABLE RONDE, I had no idea that the Church had it in mind to define the dogma of the Assumption. I wish to make it clear, on the very threshold of this book, that, though certain excesses of the Marian cult have led me to express a number of reservations, these are not to be understood as constituting on my part any opposition to the new dogma. I have accepted its promulgation with the feelings of a catholic who is convinced that, in matters of faith, the Church can deceive neither itself nor us. But I am also of the opinion that, no more than its other privileges, can the Assumption of the Virgin make legitimate the manifest abuses which I set myself to denounce in the following pages. On the contrary, it makes them the more troublesome and the more dangerous because there is a grave risk that the scandal to which they give rise for those who "worship in spirit and in truth" may have an injurious effect upon that tender and filial devotion to the Virgin which is an essential part of Catholic piety.