Academic journal article The Catholic Historical Review

Loreto: Crocevia Religioso Tra l'Italia, Europa E Oriente

Academic journal article The Catholic Historical Review

Loreto: Crocevia Religioso Tra l'Italia, Europa E Oriente

Article excerpt

Loreto: Crocevia religioso tra litalia, Europa e Oriente. Edited by Ferdinando Citterio and Luciano Vaccaro. [Quaderni della "Gazzada," 16.] (Brescia: Morcelliana. 1997. Pp. xxxii, 596. Lire 90,000 paperback.)

This hefty volume derives from a conference held in 1995 to celebrate the 700th anniversary of the miraculous transfer of the home of the Virgin from Nazareth to Loreto, where the Holy House promptly became a major pilgrimage center. Given the volume's size and scope, an analytical index would have been most welcome; its absence is only partially offset by Nicola Raponi's introduction, which does offer a helpful entree to the collection. The twenty-seven contributions range from Cardinal Godfried Danneels theological prolusion to Giulio Cattin's musicological conclusion, though most address the devotional, ecclesiological, and artistic significance of this Marian shrine. First, some distinguished speakers trace the historical context: Luigi Gambero, on Marian piety in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries; Kaspar Elm, on devotion to the Virgin and female religious life; Giorgio Fedalto, on the memory of the East in the medieval West; and Sylvie Barnay, on Marian apparitions. Giorgio Cracco's wide-- ranging discussion of Loreto's part in the late-medieval efflorescence of sanctuaries, Marian and otherwise, is particularly fecund with ideas and rich in bibliographical pointers.

A second set of essays tackles the ecclesiological dimensions of the shrine of Loreto, which figured importantly in the universal as in the local church. Mario Sensi sorts out the protracted jurisdictional disputes that pitted bishops of Recanati against the rectors of the Holy House. Gian Ludovico Masetti Zannini chronicles the interest of numerous popes, from Urban VI to John Paul II, in the pilgrimage to Loreto, which they encouraged with numerous indulgences and conspicuous personal devotion. Laszlo Szilas surveys references to Loreto in the spiritual literature of one of the great orders of the Catholic Reform, the Jesuits, while Pietro Vittorino Regni recounts the long involvement of another, the Capuchins, in promoting and propagating the cult. Unfortunately, the illness that led to Gustavo Parisciani's death prevented him from contributing more than a brief note on the Franciscan Conventuals and Loreto. …

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