Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

sua eccellenza mary ann

By Diogenes (articles ) | Feb 29, 2008

U.S. Ambassador to the Holy See Prof. Mary Ann Glendon presented credentials at the Vatican today and got a gracious, and diplomatically pointed, welcome -- which you can read here. She's not the first woman to hold the post, of course, but I suspect she's more than usually aware of the paradox in being addressed as "Your Excellency" by the Pope.

An appeal from our founder, Dr. Jeffrey Mirus:

Dear reader: If you found the information on this page helpful in your pursuit of a better Catholic life, please support our work with a donation. Your donation will help us reach five million Truth-seeking readers worldwide this year. Thank you!

Progress toward our April expenses ($18,914 to go):
$35,000.00 $16,086.48
54% 46%
Sound Off! CatholicCulture.org supporters weigh in.

All comments are moderated. To lighten our editing burden, only current donors are allowed to Sound Off. If you are a donor, log in to see the comment form; otherwise please support our work, and Sound Off!

Show 2 Comments? (Hidden)Hide Comments
  • Posted by: - Mar. 01, 2008 10:19 AM ET USA

    KK: The -essa ending is being used less & less in Italian: a good thing because by now it sounds much like saying "woman professor" or "woman doctor" or "woman lawyer". It's quite "laic" I would say to give to the profession what is the profession's and to sex what is the sex's: and in fact it makes sense to distinguish between "genitore" and "genitrice", and that there is no "nutore", but just "nutrice". What I don't get is the paradox that Di is referring to.

  • Posted by: - Mar. 01, 2008 12:53 AM ET USA

    I notice that at the end of the Pope's remarks to Mary Ann Glendon, several biographical points about her are listed, in Italian. She is described twice as "Professore" rather than as "Professoressa," the term commonly used for a university teacher who is a woman. Can you explain this particular usage?

Subscribe for free
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Recent Catholic Commentary

Smaller Church, Bigger Faith, 3: Ecclesiastical Discipline April 17
The Holy Spirit and Evangelization: A Primer April 16
Journey to the Sun: A Strange Biography of Junípero Serra April 16
Russia's demographic recovery + US demographic decline = danger April 16
James Carroll strikes (at the Church) again April 16

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
Pope Francis's Easter Message 'Urbi et Orbi' (To the City and the World): full text, link to video CWN - 8 hours ago
Pope Francis: Easter Vigil homily (full text) CWN - 9 hours ago