Letters to the editor – Feb. 29, 2024


Disfigured statute conveys important message

To the Editor:

An image in the Feb. 22, 2024 Catholic Messenger shows us a statue of the Blessed Virgin Mary that was vandalized at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, D.C. Apparently hit with a hammer, the statue’s face has been altered in a way that suggests a woman disfigured by some act of profound violence.

Of course, it is not a woman; it is just a statue. Mary was not hurt. On the other hand, real women in this country are injured gravely in domestic disputes or other acts of gender-focused violence and intimidation. 


It seems to me that there is a strange blessing here. Some person has chiseled a statue that now can be turned into a memorial of this violence against women. If they were to keep the statue as it is but changed the signage a bit, I think it could still convey an important Christian message. 

Tadd Ruetenik

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