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The United Kingdom

Responses to Totus2us podcasts given by Brits with Christian names beginning with G - many thanks to you all       ♥


"Mary is responsible for keeping us all blessed."


"Quite recently I painted an icon of Mary and, as I built up the layers of tempura on the gesso, I felt that I was going through every stage of her life. And it was very painful, it was very joyous, and there was such an incredible message that she gave me, and all the pain that I felt she gave me comfort every step of the way. And to show the icon to other people, it seems to reach them."

Father Gareth Leyshon      

"From there I was headhunted by Cardiff University and spent four years doing a PhD on dust in distant galaxies. But half way through the doctorate I asked the big question again 'Lord, what should I do next?' and this time the answer was different. I was driving a friend home from another Youth 2000 retreat when, somewhere past Reading on the motorway, I turned to her and I said "Still don't know what I'm doing after this PhD but when I become a priest, I shall ..' Oh, what did I just say? It was then that I knew that the idea had gone from somewhere in my head to somewhere in my heart and it was time to take the next step. So I approached the archdiocese of Cardiff and, after finishing the PhD, I went to seminary at Wonersh and was ordained priest in 2006. I served five years in the parish of St Dyfrig, Pontypridd, and then came to the city of Cardiff where I now serve as a Catholic priest. The journey with God hasn't finished yet. I don't know what's in store next but I don't need to know. I know I'm in the right place, doing what He has asked me to do: "Do this in memory of me.""


"Saint Maximilian Maria Kolbe was a fantastic man who was a Franciscan priest and it was his passion to spread the Good News throughout the world. This saw him setting up a printing press in Poland and going as far as Japan to spread the Good News of the Gospel. During the Nazi regime that took hold, he was arrested and sent to Auschwitz for speaking out about human dignity. While he was at Auschwitz he continued to live that Gospel message of spreading truth and love. And he really did show hope where there was despair, he showed love where there was hatred. In his time at Auschwitz he would listen to confessions, where possible; he would celebrate Mass, when possible, and he lived a truly devout and holy life. He always had a massive passion for Our Lady as well and took her role as true disciple to heart. Father Maximilian Kolbe was a man who, through his passion for the Gospel, gave his life for another man in Auschwitz."

Gavin Stuart Angelo      

"It is far more important to have a strong, unified family and I think as an icon Mary represents that, but far deeper than that she is the mother of Jesus and therefore has a great, deep significant role in our faith and helps us through our many trials."


"Mary, our mother is an inspiration to me because she said to God, completely and wholly said yes to God and accepted His will.  … I also find the Magnificat that she sang on her visitation to Elizabeth, I find that really inspirational. It's a song of love for God and her soul magnifies the Lord and her spirit rejoices in God her Saviour, and I really aspire to those words myself, and I want my spirit to rejoice in my God and to know His love."


"Our Lady gave life to one person indeed, the Son of God, and in doing so she gave more than life, she gave salvation, grace, sanctity, healing, deliverance, connection with God, redemption and salvation to everybody - everybody who was alive at that time, everybody who has been alive since and everybody who will ever live. She really is a vessel of pure grace and love. She knows nothing but love because she’s completely sin free and we know that from our Tradition and we know that from our faith."


"The more I understand the relationship between Jesus and his mother, the more I can understand how important it is that I recognise her as my mother spiritually."


"Any area of darkness in my life I can turn to Mary and I have a real sense of hope for the future that there's nothing that, with her interceding to her Son, I can't overcome."


"Mary is always there, with her arms open."


"Our Lady, she’s my no. 1 woman, after my wife .. I’m 75 now & Our Lady looked after me all these years, and she will still look after me. Amen."


"Our Lady is just my mother in every possible way - she loves me so tenderly and yet so fiercely. "


"The thing that came to my mind about Mary is that she's always there for us. Amen."


"Saint Gianna Molla is one of the Patron Saints of the Unborn. She grew up in Italy and worked for Catholic Action. She was a very studious youngster and then she got into medicine and her calling was in medicine. She got married and had several children. When she was pregnant with her last child, there was some sort of complication and there were suggestions of perhaps some sort of abortion, but she said that if there's any question about it, save the life of the child, not me. And she died after childbirth, and it was that child who was with her husband at her beatification, about 40 years later. That's why I love her."


"Something about Mary for me is that she brings victory of goodness over evil and of life over death. She brings us to God, and she is close to God and to us."


"I believe Our Lady intervened for me when my brother was seriously ill with a head injury in London."


"When I went to Medjugorje I had quite a conversion in my relationship with our Blessed Mother Mary. It was when I came to the Station of the Cross and I saw Jesus looking at his mother that I realised if Jesus needed her as his mother then so did I."


"I really find Mary such a figure of a mother - she’s so beautiful and so strong; and her strength is really beautiful and it really helps me every day just to think 'I've got another mother and she's strong and she's here for me.' Every single day she's here for me. She's really beautiful."


"What that means I think is that every time a Catholic says the Hail Mary they can implicitly affirm the Immaculate Conception. Isn’t that beautiful! Every time we say the Hail Mary in the rosary, ‘Hail Mary, full of grace, you were conceived without sin.’"

Graham chose his confirmation saint Kizito on The Incredibles      

"I think he is a saint especially for our time, with all the problems with marriage and with sexual immorality and with abuse in all sorts of area of the world, especially in Holy Mother Church. I think he’s a real incredible witness to purity and to joy and I think we could all seek his intercession."


"I think it's really important to pray to Our Lady for many reasons. Because she is the mother of Our Lord and he entrusted us to her in a motherly way. On the very Cross he said 'Woman, behold your son' and pointed at his beloved apostle. There are many other reasons as well. Throughout the history of the Church people have asked for the intercession of our Blessed Mother and we've been told that the rosary has on occasions literally stopped wars. I think also if you look in the Gospel, whenever she is quoted as having spoken, it is always very deep and profound. Once she asks for Our Lord to help the wedding couple at Cana and what she says is so simple, she just says 'They have no more wine': she knows exactly what the couple needed because she was their mother, and so that is why I think we should pray to Our Lady."


"Being a priest is not just about knowing things … a lot more is about being a witness to what you talk about, a witness to the sacraments and being there for people."

Graham is a seminarian at Allen Hall in London.


"Mary is our mother who prays for us, intercedes for us, who is our example. Her yes is an example to us in our lives and, in all of this, she points us to Jesus."


"For me Mary is a mother that I can call on as a constant support, as a constant help and a constant feel of affection from her and constantly draw grace and encouragement from her virtue and her grace."


"Our Lady has always been very special to me, I suppose because my mother had such a very deep devotion towards her. When I was little she was like a mother to me and as I've grown older, I can so identify with her and her sufferings with Jesus. She is just a wonderful inspiration and when I think of her as a young girl accepting that, it's just mind-boggling."


"Mary is the person I go to when I need some help or just comforting in my life."


"I think that Mary is a bit in a way like my Mum because I pray to her at night when I'm scared, like if there's a thunderstorm, or if I'm scared about something that's going to happen in the future or in the past that has happened. And I pray to her when I'm feeling happy as well when I'm glad about something or I'm grateful."


"I feel very blessed to have Our Lady as my mother and I try and think as much as I can and remember in the day what she was like as a mother to Jesus - how loving and how kind and patient, the infinite joy she must have had when she was with her son, and try to think of how she would have responded in certain situations she would have been faced with as a mother, so that I could try my hardest to imitate her.. She is so loving and kind and wants so much to bring us, her children, to her son. She is a wonderful mother to everyone and I call on her whenever I need her. She always responds with love and kindness."