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Ramón Santoyo Reyes
Male Youth, Querétaro, México
"I crowned Mary. Since the beginning of the year, I had taken it as a purpose to re-conquer my bedroom-home shrine, I began to paint it, to rearrange it... to spend more time there. I had no idea that due to the pandemic I would be forced to meet with the Blessed Mother more and more. My room went from being a place of rest from which I often avoided, to being a space of encounter with God, of work, of welcome. I felt and continue to feel how Mary calls me to transformation..From my room! It was time to crown her, since I had had the crown for years, and then the current emerged. It was a small miracle that God was giving me. During the Mass, my mother and sister had not wanted to join since they are not Schoenstatters. I went downstairs with my cell phone and I turned up the volume, I placed myself close to them. - "Look, it's in several languages!" -I commented. After a while my sister came with me and we attended the Mass together. Almost at the end, a little before the crowning, my mother passed by my room and decided to join us. At the end, we all crowned our Queen. Mary looked after the health of my family, she accompanied us in building the bonds that had been wounded by my father's death. The crowning of Mary was for me the giving of all these graces for the good and health of the world".
“When the WHO declared the pandemic, it was not aware of the significance of the situation we were experiencing. The uncertainty about the CoronaVirus, its consequences, the contagion, the political decisions.. made every day a flood of news that took away my peace. Every time a situation surpasses me, the first person I go to tell my "stories" is the Blessed Mother? But if I am confined, how can I go to Her?
As a mother, she did not take long to take care of her children. On March 14th the confinement in Spain began and on the 18th, the entire Spanish family crowned her as Queen of Physical and Spiritual Health. It was a very simple ceremony (we were making our debut in the virtual celebrations) but it marked a before and after. To rediscover the Home Shrine, to meet more frequently with our life group, to be able to "attend" Masses with Schoenstatt Fathers? Personally I see that the Blessed Mother began to prepare my heart, it was like the prologue of what we would experience a month later. Soon after, the news of the International Crowning arrived: Schoenstatt from all over the world would get united to tell Mary "we trust in you and we make you Queen of all this situation"
It is difficult to capture everything that I experienced during those days, but I could summarize it in three words: the first is family. To feel in a real way that we were a family united in Jesus and the Blessed Mother, each one with his own style, language, songs.. We were all there, in the Original Shrine. The second is experience. With the crowning I relived special and wonderful moments: missions, camps, World Youth Day, jubilees, coronations.. They were very hidden treasured in my heart. And the third is gratitude. I feel a profound gratitude to Father Kentenich: for his yes on that October 18, 1914, for teaching me that there are no better arms to turn to than those of the Blessed Mother, who leads us directly to Jesus, for giving me a family that crosses any physical boundary and to which I feel very united.
The crowning was to renew my "yes" to being a child of God, to being a child of Mary and to Schoenstatt. I know that she will glorify herself at the world level, because in me, she has already done it.”
Profesional Branch, Barcelona, Spain
De Mestral Galilea Family
Family Branch, Asunción, Paraguay
“Maria came into my life at the age of 11, but soon after, I forgot her. Then, she was present at a turning point in my life at the age of 24. But I let her go again. Work, social activities, study... Everything was more urgent than connecting with her and the relationship cooled down.
But my world bottomed out when 2 years ago, over a thousand miles away, I get a call. It was my husband, announcing that my son was seriously ill. This had been my second pregnancy and therefore, the fact that I had carried it to term was a victory. But within a year of his life, he was gone. I flew home with my eyes closed, crying and praying. As expected, I turned to a loyal friend, the Blessed Mother. She would be there to accompany me during the trip to the airport, during the flight and by giving me the company of an unconditional friend.
I arrived one cold dawn in my city and they took me urgently to the hospital. My son was waiting in the ICU, connected to the ventilator. I said, 'Son, fly high. I love you to infinity. See you when the Father provides it". I imagined that the Blessed Mother was singing to him and that the angels were taking him away.
Then, as it happened with Her, they gave me my son in a sheet. I uncovered his face and I felt that I was under the cross. Then I descended from the floor of the ICU to the basement to take him to his final rest and I just thought, 'My God, why have you forsaken me?
There I imagined her again. I lowered my head and took a deep breath. She had done it before, I could count her words as ointment. From the day of the funeral it is worth remembering that we went to Mass. My husband and I asked the Blessed Mother not to let go of our hand. And she as Mother and Queen fulfilled it. Two months later, I became pregnant for the third time. We as a couple joined the Family Branch of Schoenstatt and we began to walk hand in hand with other families of the Movement. Time passed and the nine months of pregnancy were completed. Unlike the previous ones, in that pregnancy there was no mandatory rest or risk.
She was at the foot of my bed in the hospital and Benja was born among prayers. Since then, I usually repeat: before I was a Catholic by tradition and now with Her, I am a Catholic by conviction. Benja was consecrated to the Blessed Mother; he is a very healthy and very affectionate child.
The International Crowning came at home at a time of greater commitment to the Blessed Mother. My husband, made the cross out of bracelets of mine, and we received Her praying the rosary with Benja. Hearing how she is venerated opened my eyes. How loved Mary is! Days before the Crowning we started receiving gifts in our family. More affection in the treatment, more temperance to go through the work challenges and more confidence that everything will be fine. As a legacy of the Coronation, we undertook the project of praying the rosary every night until today and we see how from the prayer of the rosary She as Mother and Queen leads our day. Thank you, Blessed Mother, for allowing me to feel what you felt, and even if small, be able to do something, that resembles you! When I think about heaven, I imagine that you are there with my son, from where you expect me to give testimony of your love and your hope. I love you, Mater.”
On November 1, 1992 our MTA received Her crown and scepter in our Home Shrine, Transforming Grace. We crowned Her in thanksgiving for Her powerful intercession which led us to find our new home in Staten Island.
Throughout the years our Blessed Mother has proven to be a very active presence in our family life, especially when our human efforts have been exhausted. This year in late March was no different. My husband Efrain, was hospitalized for Covid-19 related respiratory complications on March 28th, just three days after the we crowned our MTA in the USA, Crowning as Queen of our Health. When I dropped him off at the hospital emergency department, I told him to have a serious chat with our Father God and the Blessed Mother and plead for His mercy and our MTA's protection and victory over this trial. Our family, adult children and precious grandchildren, together with our Schoenstatt family and many brothers and sisters in Christ united in prayer for Efrain's healing.
On April 7th, Efrain was discharged to our home, not yet 100%, but steadily gained his strength and pulmonary function until no longer requiring the use of oxygen ( we also implored Fr. Kentenich's intercession). On April 15th together with our International Schoenstatt Family, we joyfully crowned our MTA once again in the spirit of gratitude for Efrain's healing and restoration. One of the greatest joys of this experience was to share in the childlike prayers of our dear young grandchildren, another generation blessed with expectant hope in our MTA's intercession. This time our granddaughters participated with great happiness thanking our MTA and Jesus for their "Papa's" feeling better and being home with us again!
Family Branch, New York, USA
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