...Mary Pyle one might say is the center of this little company, and I enjoyed visiting her down the mountain-side in the big old house which was like a house of hospitality to all the guests who came. She told me that there had been many exaggerated stories about Padre Pio, but she still recommended the book, The True Face Of Padre Pio, which I must get hold and read, since it was written right on the spot, and which will bring back to me that atmosphere.
Mary Pyle was reading the office after Mass when I met her, and later in the afternoon I walked with her to her home and visited with her. She had been a companion of Maria Montessori for ten years and had travelled with her all over Europe, but when the two of them came to San Giovanni Rotondo, Mary Pyle felt she had found her particular vocation....
... Mary Pyle heard the "call," and settled in what was then a tiny mountainside village on the eastern coast of Italy. Visit her too, those of you who go to visit Padre Pio! ...
Resulting from the Prayer Group, a non-profit exempt Religious organization was founded and is active in Columbus, Ohio; encouraging belief in God, inviting others to prayer and helping the poor, especially the missions. Their information is as follows:
THE GREAT COMMAND, INC.
4498 Hunter Lake Dr.
Powell, Ohio 43065-7947
All of this was the result of Mary'Pyle's suggestion to start a Prayer Group.
In 1964, during a visit with other English speaking persons and Mary Pyle, we were discussing confessions. I remarked that since I could not speak fluent Italian I would not sign up for confession. She said very firmly "YOU MUST GO TO CONFESSION." I did and the confession was a success. The following year, when I went to confession, I could not understand Padre Pio. I was beginning to apologize to Padre Pio and he interrupted me and told me to make an act of contrition and gave me absolution.
I have enclosed other items to support my testimony. We shall continue to Pray that God's will be done.
God Love You.
(at the submitter's request his name will not be printed)
May 25th 2011
I met Mary Pyle as a very young woman in September, 1966, on a pilgrimage to Padre Pio with my mother, Joan, my sister, and an aunt. We were brought to meet her by Charles Mandina, an American who had been staying in San Giovanni Rotondo for quite a while and knew her well. It was a year and a half before she died, and my memory is that Mary Pyle, who had been ill, was resting in a practical-looking chaise longue, wearing her Third Order Franciscan habit, as I recall. I stood at the foot, staring at her, absorbed and somewhat mesmerized as she gently spoke about Padre Pio with my mother, who stood more closely beside her. They were talking in such a friendly way, as if they knew each other (my mother had read the few books about Padre Pio available in English at the time and admired Mary so much), and Mary was also giving her the name of a trustworthy driver for a side trip we were to take.
And so, there was Mary, not feeling well, yet receiving us warmly in her famous, welcoming home. We stood in a room that seemed softly atmospheric with goodness, in a house of so much history! So many charitable and loving things took place in that house through Mary Pyle's goodness...Sad things, too--the deaths of Padre Pio's mother and father. When Padre Pio said to Mary Pyle, "Stay here," so many years before, he was speaking to the purity of heart he saw in her, the childlike love and faith which belonged to the mission of that mountain! She returned to Padre Pio a short time later and remained there the rest of her life-- a wealthy woman who gave up the whole world and lived in her Franciscan Third Order habit near her beloved Padre Pio. Anyone could see her purity of heart-- all you had to do was look at her face, her eyes...She was the proof that "become as little children," is a beautiful thing to behold. I had no notion of how much I would treasure that moment for the rest of my life. It was the opened-eyes of my youth...