Hail, Mary, Full of Grace
In response to the cover story on how Protestants are embracing the mother of Jesus, new followers, Catholics and other longtime admirers of Mary wrote of the strength and solace she brings to their lives. But some readers objected, saying we were providing too much coverage of religious topics
"HAIL, MARY" WAS A SPLENDID ANALYSIS of a development in spirituality that goes profoundly beyond the goddess fad that has captured our imaginations for years [March 21]. The piety and deepest consciousness of a human being seek a feminine face, especially in a world whose cultures are saturated with patriarchy. Thank you for helping rescue Mary, a kind of biblical goddess, from passive neglect. Many of us appreciate your generous examples of Protestants, including Methodists like me, who keep opening doors of faiths that are traditional but are willing to take risks.
(THE REV.) MARVIN E. REPINSKI
IT WAS WONDERFUL TO SEE MARY ON TIME's cover. She is humanity's greatest friend and intercessor but never takes or shares the place of Jesus. Discussing her role as intercessor, however, without mentioning her apparitions and the miracles associated with her at Fatima, Lourdes, Guadalupe and other locations is akin to discussing Christ without mentioning his Passion.
New York City
YET ANOTHER ISSUE OF TIME THAT MADE me wonder whether I have subscribed to a newsmagazine or a religious tract. Please, stick to real news reporting and leave the articles on religion and proselytizing to faith-based publications.
MARY UNDERSTANDS ME AS A MOTHER does. She is my ideal. She epitomizes goodness, faithfulness and devotion. She was Jesus' first disciple, and she was with him from his first breath to his last.
MARY JANE FREDERICKS
THE PROTESTANT ACCEPTANCE OF MARY reflects a long-held Roman Catholic feeling that God the Father also has a feminine side. Humanity longs for a parent God who is not only a father but also a mother. The Marian movement among Protestants is very welcome. It represents an openness. Perhaps we will realize that religious faiths all contain essentially the same truths.
SAMUEL J. YAP
Batangas, the Philippines
ALTHOUGH I AM JEWISH, I HAVE STATUES OF Mary around my home and don't in the least feel any conflict with religious doctrine. I regard Mary as a symbol not of religion but of ideal motherhood. Mary provides solace, unconditional acceptance and love, and a spiritual, nondenominational sanctuary from life's madness.
Read other stories about the Virgin Mary in TIME's archives at timearchive.com
Tough Guy for a Tough Job
PRESIDENT BUSH'S CHOICE OF JOHN Bolton, who has been openly hostile to the U.N., to be U.S. ambassador to the organization was a gutsy move [March 21]. In my dozen or so years in the Washington foreign-assistance field, as a political appointee and a career diplomat, I found no individual more honest and straightforward than Bolton. He was a tough boss and a straight-shooting friend and colleague who always let you know where you stood. He's an inspired and excellent choice.
MARY BETH ALLEN YARBROUGH
Sugar Land, Texas