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The United States of America

Pope Paul VI was a pilgrim to the United States of America in 1965. Saint John Paul II followed in his footsteps, visiting the USA 7 times: in 1979, 1981, 1984, 1987, 1993 for World Youth Day Denver, 1995 and 1999. Papa Benedict XVI made a pilgrimage to the USA in 2008 and Pope Francis visited in 2015.

So many Americans have generously given their response to a Totus2us podcast (a great witness to the beautiful faith among America's young people), they are shown here alphabetically by Christian name:
beginning with A - B, C - D, E - I, J - L (here below), M - Q, R - S and T - Z
- many thanks to you all   ♥

To download the free mp3 Totus2us audio recordings individually, right/double click on the blue play buttons.

If you'd like to visit a Catholic Church or know more about what's going on in your area, a good place to find out more on the web are the diocesan websites - links here.

Jack      

"Our Blessed Mother is really very precious to me - she's done so many things for me during my life, made it a happy life and I thank her for it all. Amen."

Jack      

"One of the beautiful things that I remember about it that I will never forget is as I was leaving, I told Father Mahoney 'That's why I came into your office last night and this morning was for this confession.' That was the only time that he got angry, was he said 'Never again put off confession.' He just knows the power and showed me the power that is the forgiveness of sins that is granted to a priest through the Holy Spirit and through the Church. It's not always easy, it didn't make me perfect (far from it), but it did in a real way introduce me to Christ's love and his compassion for all of us. So thanks be to God for that."

Jack      

"When it comes to Mary, I have a great devotion to Our Lady of Czestochowa. She sits in my room wherever I go; I bring her with me even when I travel. The image of her, she has a scar from when she was taken out of the church in Częstochowa and stabbed. They've tried to fix it and it always comes back - she chooses the scar, and I think that's beautiful. I think it shows her motherly care for her children: it's a bruised world, a scarred world and she wants to be right there with us. And yet still shows how our scars can be beautiful to the Lord. She's more than a role model, she's an intercessor and she really does show us the true and beautiful way to Christ."

Janel      

"Mary is very important to me because she is my example and model, my best friend. She helped me to come closer to Jesus. My consecration to her, following the preparation of St Louis Maria de Montfort, really was instrumental in my conversion, so brought me to her Son and then helped reveal to me my vocation to a complete consecration to Him."

Jill       

"I finally get it about the whole Mary thing."

Jill was a pilgrim to the Hill of Crosses in Lithuania      

"The Hill of Crosses in Lithuania started out as a place with only a few crosses put there by Christians in Lithuania and then Russians came in and knocked all the crosses down. Then people replaced them and the Russians came back, and the people replaced them and finally the Russians gave up. To go there now and see every square inch covered with crosses, on an area about the size of a football field, is an objective testimony to love of God and the strength that God gives people under incredible circumstances."

Jim       

"I recently was reading a book that is a collection of lectures Cardinal Avery Dulles gave at the seminary in Dunwoody about Pope John Paul II and his ministry. One segment he devoted to what he called John Paul II's Marian theology or mission and it was a wonderful section. Something that rang a bell with me was the section about Mary as a mediator, Mary as someone to whom you pray to ask God to help you or other people in difficult circumstances."

Father Jim      

"The Blessed Mother is the Mother of God, she lives in the Divine Will, she was incarnate without original sin, she was a perfect spouse of the Holy Spirit and, because of her 'yes' to God, Jesus was able to become incarnate in her womb. She's the Ark of the New Covenant, she's the Queen of heaven and earth, men and angels, and, if people would listen to her and do what she said, we would have peace. What she said was: consecrate Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, lead the Church in first Saturday devotions and pray the rosary every day. And when we do that we don't have anything else to worry about. She means everything to me."

Father Jim Anderson is a priest of the Missionaries of Holy Apostolate of Cromwell, Connecticut.

Jo      

"Mary to me? Wow! She’s too big to just put into words but I’ll try: she’s intercessor, she's in my life every day, she is my help, she is my way to Jesus."

John      

"I have a very special devotion to Mary which comes to me through my family. ... I think of Mary as our mother in heaven, the Queen of Peace. I have a strong devotion to St Therese of Lisieux who said 'She's more a mother than a queen'."

John      

"I love Our Lady."

John       

"That's kind of the beauty of the faith is that it represents humanity, it's grounded in humanity, and Mary is kind of the anchor of that, she's the human mother of God. She's able to be conversed about, to be related to, and really just to be loved truly humanly, because she is human, she is one of us. So it gives me great hope because God came down and gave us access to Him through humanity and especially through Mary."

John is working on the ace initiative / video project 1 Billion Stories.

Father John      

"That has been a tremendous grace in my life to feel that Our Lady, through the tragedy that she experienced in her life, can connect with the difficulties we have and give us the grace to persevere and to overcome.  So Our Lady continues to be an inspiration and a great advocate in my life."

Father John McHale is COO at the Living Scripture Institute.

Father John      

"I’m in love with the Blessed Virgin because she loves us so much and leads us to her son, who cares for us and wants us to go closer to her."

Br John Baptist CFR      

"Probably the most striking thing for me about Saint Peter the Apostle is he's a man who kept saying yes to the Lord, despite his weakness, despite whatever - how big or small the task was that Jesus was calling him to, he continued to say yes. And he didn't always do it perfect and the beautiful thing is that Jesus made up for the lack, he made up for the slack in Peter's life. And I think it was through that continual saying yes to the Lord that he became this great man of faith."

Brother John Mary CFR      

"Our Lady is very near and dear to my heart, and she is the one who I would say above all gave me the courage to answer the call to my vocation. And that occurred on a Marian pilgrimage about 11 years ago. I was praying very much for the Lord to make it clear to me what my vocation was … It was just the warmth of Our Lady's heart that really gave me the confidence that there was nothing to fear; that the Lord who loves us so much, when He calls us, He has only good in store for us. So it gave me the courage to say yes and to answer the call, and to once more commit my life and my vocation to Our Lady."

Brother John Mary is a Franciscan Friar of the Renewal

Sister John Mary      

"For me, Mary is a tender mother."

Joseph      

"Mama Mary brings me closer to God through prayer."

Joyce Anne       

"Mary is everything to me; she is my mother and I go to her for everything; I go to her in prayer, especially for help with my children and with my family."

Juan       

"Our Blessed Mother is very important to me because since as far back as I remember my parents and grandparents instilled in my siblings and me a great love for praying the rosary. In the rosary I have found consolation and the ability to really live out the life of Christ in prayer. I like to begin and end my day with the rosary. If I can give anybody anything, I desire to give them a great love for saying the rosary."

Juan gives his algo acerca de María in English & Spanish.

Julie      

"To me Mother Mary is the mother of all people and she is the kindest, most loving person who intercedes for us to God our Father and to her son Jesus Christ."

Karen      

"Mary to me is many things, but mostly she is my mother. … As I’ve grown, my love for Mary has increased but it’s nothing compared to the love that she has for me. A few years ago I was blessed to go to the Holy Land and I was so overcome with beautiful emotion and really felt her presence and understood that, no matter what I've suffered, what she's suffered as the mother of my Saviour and being there at the foot of the Cross will always be my inspiration."

Kate      

"We spent the whole day visiting our Blessed Mother most beautiful, with St Catherine Labouré, St Louise de Marillac and St Vincent de Paul. It was such an unbelievable way that it all came together in a perfect, perfect way."

Kathleen      

"Mary for me is an example of purity and I pray to her every day to help me to not only be pure in terms of chastity but to have a clean heart that’s just focused on God. And also she’s a source of comfort for me."

Katie       

"I look at Mary and Mary had this perfect man in Joseph and she was perfect herself. And Joseph was just such a great man and I caught myself a few of weeks ago praying to Mary that I've got this wonderful man in my life and just trying to appeal to her on that level of watching over our relationship because she had found something so incredible and I've found something so incredible."

Katie      

"In my daily life with Our Lord, I take Our Lady’s example of prayer and of just living with the Lord."

Kerri      

"I really appreciate the strength and beauty of Mary. I think a lot of times we look at Mary like this very humble woman, which she was, but she was also very strong. My favourite description of Mary that I've ever heard is in G.K. Chesterton's Ballad of the White Horse and Our Lady appears to a man on the battlefield and he says 'Seven swords were in her heart but one was in her hand.' And I just love the strength that that portrays of Our Lady of Sorrows."

Kevin       

"Mary for me is a symbol of profound humility and profound love. And I think the most important thing for me is her willingness to accept what God wills without understanding it, without knowing what's ahead but saying yes. That's to me the best example that we shouldn't be afraid of what's ahead for us as long as we trust in the Lord."

Kevin       

"Mary is a symbol of all that is good and pure to me and her holiness is something that I use as inspiration."

Kristen       

"The Blessed Mother is absolutely breathtaking. I never realised how important she was to me until I heard the story of John Paul II and how he lost his mother and asked Our Blessed Mary to take him in and it was absolutely amazing. I know that I have a mother always there for me and I know I can always lean back on her and she will always be there for me. And she was so devoted to her son, it makes me believe she is just as devoted to me and it's absolutely beautiful."

Lara      

"I think one of the biggest things I took away from the Camino was just a lot of love. I always knew love was important in life but I don't think I realised how important it was until I went on the Camino. The Camino is a very simple way of life, there's not a lot of money involved in it, there's not a lot of materialism at all in it, but those were such happy days because they were filled with love. And I think that I needed that to really show me that life isn't really anything unless you have someone to give love to and then to receive love from."

Laura      

Laura's Word on the Street - 1 John 4:16
- God is Love and he who abides in God abides in love and God abides in him.
"It reminds me to address all those around me with love and compassion just as Christ would."

Lauren       

"I read St Louis de Montfort's book 'True Devotion to Mary' and realised that Mary is such a strong role model for women today and I really look to Mary as one of the greatest intercessors we have as Catholics. She is just so beautiful. As a young adult I find it difficult to watch the media and see women portrayed as just objects and seeing young girls looking up to these models and actresses who are not great role models. And yet we have this beautiful image of Mary, who just is such a wonderful, wonderful person who we can pray to and we can look at her life and see her sacrifice and her ability to say yes to God, which was just so amazing. We are just so blessed to have Mary."

Father Leo      

"We are celebrating on this great feast day the great love that we have for our mother Mary, who is not only our mother spiritually, our mother in the Church but she’s also the Mother of God, as the Church has acknowledged in 431 at the Council of Ephesus. She is a great gift to us as we need her motherhood and her protection and her prayers and her intercession before her Son Jesus."

In Man for Others, Fr Leo Fisher speaks about vocation in general      

"And so you enter into these phases of these vocations and begin those times of discernment in a good, healthy, positive way. Again, it's important for us to have good people in our lives, influences around us, whether our parish priest, our family. It's important to be building up people versus tearing them down. So I encourage you to seek the people that build us up, that strengthen us in our walk with the Lord and as we continue to grow in the faith. I end this little talk here just in a way of encouragement to you, always to enter into it with prayer. In a special way I encourage you to ask the intercession of the Mother of God, as she is Queen of heaven and earth, she intercedes for us, she hears our prayers. Allow her to intercede for you but you must ask her to intercede in a special way."

Father Leo Fisher CFR is a Franciscan Friar of the Renewal currently based at their friary in Bradford, UK.

Lissette      

Lisette's Word on the Street - John 1:1
- In the beginning was the Word; and the Word was with God and the Word was God -
"It is about Jesus our Saviour being made incarnate, coming for our salvation and it proves and supports the Trinity, and just God's will for our salvation, and it demonstrates God's love for us."

Lindsay      

"For me, as a convert to the faith, I often feel inhibited in loving Mary completely and I have to constantly remind myself that she is not a queen that is unapproachable, terrifyingly beautiful, but a queen that is maternal and one that understands the value of the hidden life that I find myself in, and an example of serving God in that humble and quiet place."

Lucy      

"Mary is my absolute ultimate mother. She has just always taken care of me when I’ve needed to be. One of my favorite prayers to her is ‘Cover me with your mantle’ and every time I do I completely feel at peace and cherished and loved with her."

If you'd be up for giving your something about Mary,
please do get in touch with the Totus2us team

- as well as hopefully bringing you joy,
you'd be really helping Totus2us   ♥

Totus tuus ego sum et omnia mea tua sunt.
Accipio te in mea omnia. Praebe mihi cor tuum, Maria. - St Louis de Montfort

Blessed John Paul II took his motto Totus Tuus from this quote.

"I am totally yours and all that I have is yours.
I accept you for my all. O Mary, give me your heart.”