An 18th century classic spiritual exercise recast for modern Catholics
HUNTINGTON, Indiana, June 6, 2013 – Based on the 18th-century writings of St. Louis de Montfort, Totus Tuus: A Consecration to Jesus Through Mary with Blessed John Paul II by Fr. Brian McMaster (Our Sunday Visitor, 2013), takes de Montfort’s classic work and recasts it in a contemporary version using the writings and example of Pope John Paul II.
During World War II, while a clandestine seminarian doing forced labor in a factory in Cracow, young Karol Wojtyla (the late Blessed John Paul II) discovered that the secret to a close relationship with Christ involved entrusting himself to Mary, Jesus’ mother, who always brings the faithful “into the very heart of the Trinitarian mystery.” This entrustment—or consecration—changed Wojtyla’s life forever.
When Fr. McMaster served as a campus minister at Texas A&M University, he found that the young adults he worked with were intrigued to discover that Pope John Paul II had practiced the total consecration to Mary. These students, full of youthful idealism and a desire to grow in their faith, wanted to imitate him but found de Montfort’s baroque language and style a barrier. That prompted Fr. McMaster to refresh the 300-year old practice, incorporating into it the late Pope’s words and his emphasis on charity and selflessness.
“While praying the consecration,” Fr. McMaster said, “I found myself meeting with many Catholic students and explaining its historical and theological context – and ultimately I felt nudged to update St. Louis’ consecration approach with the added insights of John Paul II through this book.”
Totus Tuus’ 33 days of preparatory spiritual exercises – each incorporating its own unique prayer, scripture-study, contemplation, and personal resolution – culminate in a final Day of Consecration, upon which the reader is forever allied in intimate friendship with Christ through the commendation of His Mother. The Consecration asks a person to surrender everything that is his to Mary, and thus to her Son.
Totus Tuus has caught on quickly since its release. Fr. McMaster says, “I think what makes it so attractive is it not only freshens a spiritual classic, but mentors people into a relationship with God through prayer, scripture, and the example of John Paul II – whom they love and want to emulate.”
Fr. McMaster reminds people that “the more that they give of themselves – the more generous they are –the more they find they’ve lost nothing, but rather have gained everything. God is never outdone in generosity. A life of total consecration leads to greater holiness, peace of heart, love, virtue, happiness and freedom.”
||Our Sunday Visitor
||Father Brian McMaster
||160 Pages, Paperback
The world’s largest English-language Catholic publisher, Our Sunday Visitor serves millions of Catholics globally through its publishing, offertory, and communication services. Established in 1912, Our Sunday Visitor publishes a wide range of books including Bibles, biographies of the saints, books by Pope Benedict XVI, children’s books, devotionals, bible studies, inspirational works, and curriculum. Our Sunday Visitor is a not-for-profit organization, returning a portion of net earnings back to the Catholic community through the Our Sunday Visitor Institute. For more information, visit www.osv.com.
Fr. Brian McMaster
Totus Tuus: A Consecration to Jesus through Mary with Blessed John Paul II
1. Explain the idea of Total Consecration and how it originated centuries ago with St. Louis de Montfort.
2. Why is the consecration done through Mary instead of directly to Christ?
3. What benefit does it offer to the person engaging in it?
4. Talk a bit about how and why Jesus gave us Mary as our spiritual mother, and what her role is in that regard.
5. And so, how did John Paul II become interested in St. Louis’ style of consecration? And how did he personalize it?
6. What does your book offer to people interested in a renewed closeness to Christ through radical change in their lives?
7. Give us some insight into what you’ve noticed about Catholics young and old embracing this style of devotion – the Total Consecration?
8. You’ve said that people have come to you to let you know that this Consecration has changed their lives. How? Give us some examples of that.
About The Author
Fr. Brian McMaster
Fr. Brian McMaster is Director of Vocations and Seminarians for the Diocese of Austin, Texas. He completed seminary at the Pontifical College Josephinum and has a Master of Arts in Christian Spirituality from Creighton University.
Ordained in 2001, Fr. McMaster has served in numerous assignments including campus ministry at Texas A&M University. He is an adjunct faculty member of the Institute for Priestly Formation. Fr. McMaster is founder and moderator of Cor Jesu, an association of diocesan priests devoted to the Heart of Jesus and dedicated to priestly fraternity and the New Evangelization.