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Blessed John Paul II in Mother Mary's Arms -- Totus Tuus

By Brother Randall J. Meissen, LC
May 2nd, 2011 (

Blessed Pope John Paul II lost his own mother before he was nine. However, his example of trust in the Blessed Mother Mary reminds us that we always have a spiritual mother at our side.  His apostolic motto, Totus Tuus (completely yours) expressed his self-entrustment to the arms of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

VATICAN CITY (John Paul II moments)  - Every good son delights to see his mother praised.  This is even more so the case with the Lord Jesus and his Blessed Mother, Mary.  It warms Jesus' heart to see Christians showering praises upon his mother.

And thus, love for Mary never conflicts with love for Christ.  John Paul II always considered such a suggestion to be impossible (as shown by Pope John Paul II's prayers to Mary).  No one can love Mary to the exclusion of Jesus because Mary always leads a devout soul to closer intimacy with her Son.

In the case of John Paul II, a tender relationship with Mary provided him with a maternal influence throughout life. He dedicated himself to the Blessed Virgin Mary with the motto Totus Tuus (completely yours).  He had lost his own mother, Emilia, before he was nine.  In subsequent years, it was his heavenly mother Mary who smoothed off his rough edges, who bound up his wounded heart, who stood with him at the foot of the cross and taught him to repay hatred with love.

Thus John Paul II spoke to young people about Mary in his 2003 world youth day message:

Jesus gives his Mother to you so that she will comfort you with her tenderness. She will discharge her ministry as a mother and train you and mold you until Christ is fully formed in you. This is why I now wish to repeat the motto of my episcopal and pontifical service: "Totus tuus."(completely yours) Throughout my life I have experienced the loving and forceful presence of the Mother of Our Lord. Mary accompanies me every day in the fulfillment of my mission as successor of Peter. Mary is the Mother of divine grace, because she is the Mother of the Author of grace. Entrust yourselves to her with complete confidence! (John Paul II, "Message of the Holy Father John Paul II for the 18th World Youth Day," March 8, 2003, 3-4.)

Brother Randall Meissen, LC, is author of the book Living Miracles: The Spiritual Sons of John Paul the Great. He podcasts on John Paul 2 at and can be contacted at rmeissen(at)

2011, Distributed by NEWS CONSORTIUM.

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