Academic journal article The Hymn

Sing of Mary: Giving Voice to Marian Theology and Devotion

Academic journal article The Hymn

Sing of Mary: Giving Voice to Marian Theology and Devotion

Article excerpt

Sing of Mary: Giving Voice to Marian Theology and Devotion Stephanie A. Budwey. Collegeville, MN: Liturgical Press, 2014. ISBN 978-0-8146-8268-5. $29.95.

Sing of Mary provides an historical tour of Marian hymnody throughout the ages of Christianity, particularly reviewing some of the hymns from 1854 to the present, as found in Roman Catholic hymnals used in the United States. The scholarly presentation is organized into eight chapters, with titles that are sure to nab the interest of persons familiar with the Roman Catholic Marian tradition. For instance, Chapter One provides a snippet of the Sub tuum praesidium prayer, "We fly to your patronage, O Holy Mother of God." Chapter Eight offers a phrase of a hymn, "Come, join in Mary's prophetsong." Chapter Six awakens a new level of consciousness, "The Madonna is not pleased when she is put above her Son."

At the time of publication Stephanie A. Budwey was weaving together the knowledge and expertise of her doctorate in liturgical studies and church music from Boston University School of Theology, along with practical theology at Kirchliche Hochschule in Wuppertal, Germany. [Editor's note: Budwey was the Emerging Scholar winner at The Hymn Society Conference in 2011 in Colorado Springs; her paper, "Mary, Star of Hope," was published in THE HYMN 63:2] Her academic approach is noticeable in her careful review of the ecclesial documents directed toward the liturgy and Marian devotion, as well as the historical references from the life of the early church to the present. Her pastoral approach shines in the many descriptive reasons why such a deep chasm developed between devotional and liturgical prayer, citing specific devotional practices of nineteenth-century Catholics in America.

A highlight is the seventeen-page bibliography, which includes thirty-nine references specific to the study of Mar y. Stephanie's quoting of deliberations during the Second Vatican Council show the challenges and biases of the distinct views held through the sessions, deciding where and how to define Mar y's role in salvation history in the ensuing documents. It is of particular note that she outlines the salient aspects of Mariology through the lens of each of the pontiffs of the twentieth century up to the present-day Francis, Bishop of Rome. …

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