Incorrect prayer misattributed to John Paul II

In the Internet, a particular prayer to Saint Mary spreads. The prayer expresses great affection for Mary but, unfortunately, contains highly incorrect ideas. Moreover, it is attributed to John Paul II, and it is attributed falsely.

The text of the prayer is:

“Totally yours,
Immaculate Conception, Mary my Mother,
Live in me, Act in me,
Speak in me and through me,
Think your thoughts in my mind,
Love through my heart,
Give me your dispositions and feelings,
Teach, lead me and guide me to Jesus,
Correct, enlighten and expand my thoughts and behavior,
Possess my soul,
Take over my entire personality and life, replace it with Yourself,
Incline me to constant adoration,
Pray in me and through me,
Let me live in you and keep me in this union always.”

This prayer ascribes to Mary action in the soul of a man, action characteristic of the Holy Spirit. In fact, Mary can teach, lead us and give us to Jesus, but only the Holy Spirit can live in us, act in us, pray in us, speak in us and through us. It is the Holy Spirit that can make us think as Jesus did, love through us, and give us dispositions and feelings that accord with Him. Only the Holy Spirit keeps us in union with Jesus. In all that, Mary and other saints can aid us by their intercession.

As to the authorship of the prayer – there is no grounds to attribute it to John Paul II. I have never found this prayer in his publications. And there is no information about the sources on the websites where this prayer is pasted.

On one site there is information that “this prayer was written by the Holy Father to Mary Immaculate”, but downward, we can read such a note:
“Totus Tuus, Chaplet to the Immaculate Conception. Based on the Chaplet of the Immaculate Conception, composed by St John Berchmanns, SJ, and the Tutos Tuus prayer composed by His Holiness, John Paul II.”

prayers.viarosa.com/TotusTuus.html

On other sites the prayer is followed by former pope’s name. For example:
medjugorje.net/
rosarycrusade.com/
donnamarieembracingmotherhood.blogspot.com/2008/01/new-catholic-movie-review-blog.html
osb.org/sva/obl/pdf/rosaryview.pdf
ourladyofthepassion.com/rosaryprayers.htm
ebeth.typepad.com/reallearning/think-pray-act/

I think it’s common knowledge that John Paul II had a great devotion to Mary. Whether John Paul II authored that prayer or simply used it, that prayer seems consistent with his devotion to Mary as indicated in other articles.

From: cbc.ca/news/obit/pope/
*"He saw great significance in the fact that the day the would-be assassin shot him in 1981 was the anniversary of the apparition of the Blessed Virgin at Fatima in Portugal. He believed he survived the attempt on his life because of the intercession of Mary. He later visited the man who had tried to kill him - a Turk named Mehmet Ali Agca - to forgive him in his prison cell.

He also visited the shrine at Fatima to thank Mary for sparing his life when, incredibly, a priest with a knife lunged at him, but was stopped before any harm was done." *

Also:
vatican.va/roman_curia/congregations/cfaith/documents/rc_con_cfaith_doc_20000626_message-fatima_en.html

Furthermore, if what is written in vatican.va/roman_curia/congregations/cfaith/documents/rc_con_cfaith_doc_20000626_message-fatima_en.html is true, it is clear that at least one god of John Paul II and other popes named in the above article was Mary.

It is the Holy Spirit that can make us think as Jesus did, love through us, and give us dispositions and feelings that accord with Him. Only the Holy Spirit keeps us in union with Jesus

I agree with you on that.

Dear Fair Lady,

John Paul II neither authored, nor used that prayer.

We all agree, John Paul II had a great devotion to Mary and he perceived many reasons to be grateful for Mary’s intercession. (Indeed, there were many reasons). But it does not allow us to say that every prayer expressing great devotion to Mary is consistent with his attitude.

I would not like to respond to your statement concerning article on the Vatican site.

Fair Lady:
I find I must take issue with the following: "at least one god of John Paul II and other popes named in the above article was Mary."

To my mind, this goes against the First Commandment, in particular: " I am the Lord thy God,…Thou shalt not have strange gods before me…"

As a Catholic Christian, I believe that there is but one and only one god, the only uncreated being who created everyone of us. Mary was only a young devout Jewish maiden, a created being just like me, who was offered the incredible privilege of becoming the Mother of God., and who with the fullness of grace bestowed on her by God in preparation for to be able to say, “be it done according to thy word!” Thus she became the spouse of the Holy Spirit and Jesus" took/received His human nature and human body from her own body from Mary’s human body (as in the same way any of us receive our own body from our mother’s body). Jesus’ human body has existed and still coexists with His Divine Nature in an incomprehensible hypostatic union which I cannot presume to understand let alone try to explain.

But returning to the “at least one God” phrase, Mary, a created being like you and I, cannot never become a god. Our God always was, is, and always will be, He has no creator, He is the "uncreated, and I believe that this is what He was saying to Moses when He manifested Himself through the burning bush, “I Am.” Time does not really exist for God, It is always “now” for Him as I have to assume it will be for us given we are fortunate to go to Heaven to be with Him forever throughout all eternity. I have no doubts that Pope John Paul II believed in only one God and that he always looked at Mary as his spiritual mother, our “other mother” that Jesus gave to all of us when He said
when He was Hanging on the cross, “Woman, behold thy son, son behold thy mother.” I can say without reservation she has been my spiritual mother because of the many favors she has obtained for me from her Divine Son through out my life. She has always pointed me toward her Divine Son Jesus and I can truthfully say that Jesus is my Broyher, Friend and, above all, my Lord.

This is believe, as a life long Roman Catholic. I am speaking only of myself, and Intend no insult, denigration toward anyone of any other faith: I have accepted these truths of my Catholic faith through study, investigation, reasoning, asking questions and whatever was and is necessary (especially the works of St. Thomas Aquinas) to understand what I have come to believe. I do assert that I have taken and followed the advice of St. Augustine, one of the distinguished early “fathers” and “doctors” of the Catholic Church, " I believe in order to understand, I do not try to understand in order to believe."

Almost 60 years ago when I was entering an practically solely academic career, I know He, my God, intervened in my life so that I would not and did not fall into the trap so many scientists have fallen into that can start them down the (anti-spiritual) road that leads to atheism. Mary did and has a hand in my life asking for (and obtaining for me) favors from her Divine Son who is the sole grantor of all those favors I have received. We are all called to sainthood and those who have gone to Heaven before us also petition Jesus (and the Holy Trinity actually) for whatever favorswe are asking for.

God Bless…:slight_smile:

Bussi

I need to make a correction of this phrase, an practically solely academic career, that appears in my previous post which is quoted from above and which is highlighted in previous post. I have no idea how the phrase got there. I was interrupted several times as I was putting the post together. It’s just that I was headed in practically completely scientific direction of studies in college. Nearly 90% of my academic course work was in mathematics, physics, chemistry, astronomy, and a smattering of engineering at the undergraduate and graduate level. I eventually wound up wit the job title of Computer Engineer. I had been trained to be a scientist but the Lord protected me from that fate, just as he has protected me throughout my life through all my good and bad times.

God Bless…:slight_smile:

Bussi

Yes, I would agree with you.

As a Catholic Christian, I believe that there is but one and only one god, the only uncreated being who created everyone of us. Mary was only a young devout Jewish maiden, a created being just like me, who was offered the incredible privilege of becoming the Mother of God.,

Yes, again I would say that this is taken from the truth of scripture.

and who with the fullness of grace bestowed on her by God in preparation for to be able to say, “be it done according to thy word!” Thus she became the spouse of the Holy Spirit

I respectully need disagree here and say that the Holy Spirit was not Mary’s spouse. Joseph was Mary’s spouse.

and Jesus" took/received His human nature and human body from her own body from Mary’s human body (as in the same way any of us receive our own body from our mother’s body).

To the best of my understanding I would agree there too.

Jesus’ human body has existed and still coexists with His Divine Nature in an incomprehensible hypostatic union which I cannot presume to understand let alone try to explain.

I’m not sure that the human body of Christ still exists…according to scripture He was transformed. If I’m wrong, I’d love to see what else scripture has to say about that.

But returning to the “at least one God” phrase, Mary, a created being like you and I, cannot never become a god.

For those who worship Mary, she has become a god. The prayer below which was taken from vatican.va/roman_curia/congregations/cfaith/documents/rc_con_cfaith_doc_20000626_message-fatima_en.html unfortunately proves that Mary is looked upon as “a god” or “God”. Only God has the power to deliver the things asked of her in this prayer.

"In entrusting to you, O Mother, the world, all individuals and peoples, we also entrust to you this very consecration of the world, placing it in your motherly Heart.

Immaculate Heart! Help us to conquer the menace of evil, which so easily takes root in the hearts of the people of today, and whose immeasurable effects already weigh down upon our modern world and seem to block the paths towards the future!

From famine and war, deliver us.

From nuclear war, from incalculable self-destruction, from every kind of war, deliver us.

From sins against the life of man from its very beginning, deliver us.

From hatred and from the demeaning of the dignity of the children of God, deliver us.

From every kind of injustice in the life of society, both national and international, deliver us.

From readiness to trample on the commandments of God, deliver us.

From attempts to stifle in human hearts the very truth of God, deliver us.

From the loss of awareness of good and evil, deliver us.

From sins against the Holy Spirit, deliver us, deliver us.

Accept, O Mother of Christ, this cry laden with the sufferings of all individual human beings, laden with the sufferings of whole societies.

Help us with the power of the Holy Spirit to conquer all sin: individual sin and the ‘sin of the world’, sin in all its manifestations.

Let there be revealed, once more, in the history of the world the infinite saving power of the Redemption: the power of merciful Love! May it put a stop to evil! May it transform consciences! May your Immaculate Heart reveal for all the light of Hope!”.(4) "

She has always pointed me toward her Divine Son Jesus

May I ask how Mary has always pointed you toward her Divine Son?

This is believe, as a life long Roman Catholic. I am speaking only of myself, and Intend no insult, denigration toward anyone of any other faith: I have accepted these truths of my Catholic faith through study, investigation, reasoning, asking questions and whatever was and is necessary (especially the works of St. Thomas Aquinas) to understand what I have come to believe. I do assert that I have taken and followed the advice of St. Augustine, one of the distinguished early “fathers” and “doctors” of the Catholic Church, " I believe in order to understand, I do not try to understand in order to believe."

You mention St. Thomas Aquinas and St. Augustine. How much importance does the Bible hold in your life?

Almost 60 years ago when I was entering an practically solely academic career, I know He, my God, intervened in my life so that I would not and did not fall into the trap so many scientists have fallen into that can start them down the (anti-spiritual) road that leads to atheism.

Almost 60 years ago! Bless you, Bussi. May you seek God’s word diligently and receive the special blessings He has in store for you through His word. :slight_smile:

I don’t see how that prayer “proves” Mary is a god or God. Could the prayer just be a “flowerly” (for lack of a better word) way to asking Mary to pray for those things? Like a way of asking Mary for those who sin against the Holy Spirit?

In love songs or love poems, you might hear / read “my heart belongs to you” or “you are the light of my life”. Strictly speaking, shouldn’t those phrases be reserved for Jesus? But I don’t think it is wrong to use them to express love for someone else. Just a thought.

If you have a friend who knows the boss of a company you want to work for, and your friend puts in a good word for you to the boss and you get hired, you could thank your friend for getting you the job. However, your friend didn’t hire you, the boss did. So technically the boss got you the job…

“You mention St. Thomas Aquinas and St. Augustine. How much importance does the Bible hold in your life?”

You mean the Bible that was written by the church founders? Wasn’t it assembled about 300 years after the founding of Christianity? There were plenty of traditions already in place by then, that still continue. There are truths revealed in these traditions that you won’t find in the Bible.

Do you agree that the Church of the New Testament is the true Church—the one divinely founded, ordered, and guided by Christ?

I worship God, not a book.

You’re right - that prayer doesn’t prove that Mary is a god or God. It proves that Mary is looked upon as a god or God.

[Could the prayer just be a “flowerly” (for lack of a better word) way to asking Mary to pray for those things? Like a way of asking Mary for those who sin against the Holy Spirit?
[/quote]
I don’t see anything flowery there. What is being asked of Mary is only what God can provide. The verb most often used in that prayer is “deliver”. Only God can deliver us from those things.

In love songs or love poems, you might hear / read “my heart belongs to you” or “you are the light of my life”. Strictly speaking, shouldn’t those phrases be reserved for Jesus? But I don’t think it is wrong to use them to express love for someone else. Just a thought.

The prayer goes far beyond those sentiments. The prayer asks Mary to do things that only God can do.

If you have a friend who knows the boss of a company you want to work for, and your friend puts in a good word for you to the boss and you get hired, you could thank your friend for getting you the job.

That’s a bit of a stretch, isn’t it? :slight_smile: I would thank the friend for putting in a good word for me.

However, your friend didn’t hire you, the boss did. So technically the boss got you the job…

That’s right…so I would thank the boss for hiring me. :slight_smile:

The reason I used the hiring example was I heard those exact words from someone. She thanked her friend for getting her the job, where all her friend did was put in a good word for her. I guess different people express it different ways.

There’s a helpful list of authors of the Bible here - en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Authors_of_the_Bible

Of course, all the authors were divinely inspired, as 2 Timothy 3:16 points out -
“All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:”

Wasn’t it assembled about 300 years after the founding of Christianity?

I haven’t studied the whole history of how the Bible was assembled, but plan to soon. :slight_smile:

There were plenty of traditions already in place by then, that still continue. There are truths revealed in these traditions that you won’t find in the Bible.

Anything not found in the Bible needs to be subjected to scrutiny to see if it is in agreement with what God told us through His word.

Do you agree that the Church of the New Testament is the true Church—the one divinely founded, ordered, and guided by Christ?

Yes - all true believers form the catholic church.

I worship God, not a book.

Me too. :slight_smile:

Yes, I think it’s a personality trait. Some people are much looser with speech than others. Unfortunately, the analogy doesn’t work in this topic.

It doesn’t work for you. Other people (including the author) might not see it that way.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.