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Fast Track To Sainthood

2009-04-06

The German pontiff, close aid and friend of the late pope, said that he had waived the rule that requires a five-year waiting period before even beginning the process of beatification which is the first step.

Despite the chants of thousands during his funeral demanding his immediate canonization, the Vatican is going to take its time to declare John Paul the Second a saint.

Cardinal Saraiva Martins
Prefect, Congregation for the Causes of Saints
“Being thorough makes sense.  We are just following the rules established by John Paul the Second.  The voice of the people shouting ‘Make him a saint right away!’ is important but we must scientifically prove his holiness.”

In this initial phase, Cardinal Camillo Ruini will collect all the documents and hear the testimony of the firsthand witnesses.

Next the Church will have to prove that Karol Wojtyla lived all the virtues.

And finally, a panel of doctors will have to verify a scientifically inexplicable miracle. 

Once these steps are completed, the decision will reach the desk of Benedict XVI. It is then up to him to declare Blessed the Pope who proclaimed more saints than all his predecessors together.

Pope Benedict made the announcement on May 13th, a significant date during John Paul’s 26 years as head of the Roman Catholic Church.

Cardinal Saraiva Martins
Prefect, Congregation for the Causes of Saints

“It is no coincidence: John Paul’s life was marked by this date. On May 13th,  1917, Our Lady appeared to the three children at Fatima, on May 13th  the Pope was shot, and Sister Lucia died on May 13th …. Pope Benedict’s announcement also came on May 13th.”

It is difficult to predict just when Pope Wojtyla will be beatified. But if he wants to surprise us with a miracle, as he often did when he was alive, we will soon see St. Peter’s packed with his followers as John Paul II receives the highest honour of the Catholic Church.