TOTUS TUUS (Latin for Totally Yours) named after St. John Paul II's papal motto is a fun and energetic parish based summer catechetical program for both grade school age children and middle and high school youth. TOTUS TUUS gathers together college students and seminarians from across the United States onto teaching teams of four in order to train them and send them out on the road to spread the Good News of Jesus Christ in various participating parishes throughout the Archdiocese of St. Louis. The teachers’ youthfulness, energy, and ability to witness to the Faith make them particularly effective with children and young adults.
Information for Parishes
Totus Tuus seeks to foster openness to vocations in both the young people we serve and the team members. This is accomplished by placing special emphasis on the importance and necessity of prayer, Eucharistic devotion, and Marian devotion, in addition to catechetical instruction and formation in the Catholic faith.
Grade School Program
The Totus Tuus Grade School Program is designed for children going into first through sixth grades in the 2017-18 school year. The Grade School Program runs Monday through Friday.
The students are encouraged to be clear and consistent in their faith. They are shown how to view their Lord as a good Father. This personal relationship gives them the confidence to be Christ’s witnesses in the world around them. Finally, Totus Tuus endeavors to show the youth that a humble and courageous desire to know God must be based upon a steadfast and disciplined life of prayer combined with the reception of the sacraments.
Junior and Senior High School Program
TOTUS TUUS offers an evening program for junior and senior high school youth. Junior High youth are those entering the 7th or 8th grades, and Senior High youth are those entering grades 9-12 for the 2017-2018 school year. These grade levels meet Sunday through Thursday.
We have found that vibrant, faithful, college-aged teachers can effectively impact the youth at this age. This is a great opportunity for teens to see older peers on fire for their faith and insight into discerning their vocation.
The Totus Tuus Junior and Senior High School Program comprises instruction, small group discussions, quiet meditation, prayer, and fellowship. The team teaches in such a way as to offer a dialogue in which each person feels respected in his or her most basic dignity.
The junior high students will join the senior high students for the evening program; however, their classes will remain separate to maintain an atmosphere and discussion level that is appropriate for both age groups.
Each night there is time for fellowship, snacks, and presentations. Adoration and Reconciliation will also take place on one of the nights (usually Wednesday), and on Thursday there is an opportunity for a social night that range from bowling, BBQ, or any activity that allows the TOTUS TUUS team to interact personally with the teens.
In order for the Grade School Program to run smoothly, the team requests one large hall or room for their main assemblies. (This same room can be used as a lunchroom, if necessary.) If the group is large, it is helpful to provide a microphone for the main speaker.
The size of the student body and number of teams assigned to each parish will determine how much classroom space is needed. For one team this will usually mean having three or four other classrooms available for use; for two teams, seven or eight classrooms; for three teams, eleven to twelve rooms.
Each classroom should have a chalkboard or a dry-erase board. For the 1st and 2nd grade classroom, it is ideal to have a large enough room to have some empty space near the board for the children to gather on the floor, as well as tables set up with chairs for their activities. Team members will set up the rooms.
It is very important that the church be available for Mass and confessions everyday. If possible, the team might take the students into the Adoration Chapel, if there is one, for a short time during the week; if there is not one, the church would suffice.
Information for Teachers
TOTUS TUUS offers its teachers a tremendous experience and the challenge of spending the Summer sharing the Good News of Christ with each person, each day. TOTUS TUUS teachers have the opportunity to be role models and witnesses to the love they have for their faith.
As a TOTUS TUUS teacher, you commit to traveling in a four-person team and teaching in parishes for seven weeks. Teaching for the summer also includes one week of training in the curriculum and program, which begins the last week of May, and one week of break during the week of the July 4th holiday.
If you are interested in teaching TOTUS TUUS and for more information apply here: Missionaries
Much more information can be found on the attached Informational guide.
If your parish is interested in hosting TOTUS TUUS please fill out this form
Joe Dobrynski, firstname.lastname@example.org
TOTUS TUUS recently in the news:
St. Louis Review
National Catholic Register