What's this? / Report Bad Ads
Latest News
Pope Francis

Pope to award 2016 Ratzinger Prize to Inos Biffi and Ioannis Kourempeles

October 20, 2016. The winners of this year's Ratzinger Prize will be Inos Biffi and Ioannis Kourempeles. The former, an Italian priest, is an expert in Systematic Theology and History of Medieval Theology. The latter is Greek and an Orthodox. He is an expert in History of Dogmas and Dogmatic Theology. He will be the first Orthodox to be awarded the prize given by the Joseph Ratzinger Foundation, considered by many the Nobel Prize of Theology.
Pope Francis

Pope Francis sends his condolences to Thais after the death of King Bhumibol Adulyadej

October 14, 2016. Pope Francis has sent a message to the Prime Minister of Thailand to express his condolences for the death of King Bhumibol Adulyadej. He was 88 years old, and his reign spanned seven decades. Pope Francis said he is "deeply saddened” and he expresses his closeness to the members of the royal family and the Thai people.
Pope Francis

Pope sends 100,000 dollars for Hurricane Matthew victims

October 14, 2016. Through the Pontifical Council "Cor Unum", Pope Francis will send $100,000 to the victims of Hurricane Matthew in Haiti. The money will fund relief efforts in the first stages of recovery after the devastating effects of the hurricane. With this gesture, the pope wants to express his "closeness of spirit and fatherly support” to everyone in the affected area.
Pope Francis

Pope authorizes new decrees of heroic virtues for four potential saints

October 11, 2016. Pope Francis authorized the Congregation for the Causes of Saints to promulgate the decree of heroic virtues to four people, who are being investigated by the Church for possible sainthood. The decrees were given to the following "Servants of God:”
Pope Francis

Pope Francis rejects death penalty on Twitter: #NoDeathPenalty

October 10, 2016. The Pope has has given his support via Twitter to the World Day Against the Death Penalty. The following message can be read in each of his nine accounts, in their respective languages: "Punishment should necessarily include hope! #NoDeathPenalty.”
Pope Francis

Pope Francis announces Synod about youth and vocation

October 6, 2016. It will be held in 2018 under the name "Youth, faith, and vocational discernment.” Preparations for the second Synod of bishops convened by Pope Francis are well underway.

Theme chosen for 2017 World Communications Day

September 29, 2016. The theme for the 2017 World Communications Day has officially been announced. Coming from the book of Isiah, the theme is: "Fear not, for I am with you: communicating hope and trust in our time.”
Pope Francis

Pope will not be able to travel to Israel on Friday to attend the funeral of Shimon Peres

September 28, 2016. Despite the rumors that Pope Francis will travel to Israel to attend Shimon Peres funeral, the Vatican has issued a statement officially announcing a confirmation for the pope's scheduled visit to Georgia and Azerbaijan will remain as planned on Friday. The pope spoke warmly about the former leader and sent out a telegram of condolences:
Pope Francis

Pope's schedule during his trip to Sweden

September 27, 2016. Pope Francis will travel to Sweden next October 31 and November 1, for the occasion of the Lutheran–Catholic Common Commemoration of the Reformation.This will be the 17th trip of his pontificate.

Third priest found dead in Mexico

September 26, 2016.Mexican priest, Alfredo Lopez Guillen, was found dead this weekend on a rural road about 350 km east of Mexico City, after being allegedly abducted and assaulted in his parish on Monday September 19. This is the third case of violence against priests in Mexico in just one week. On Monday, September 19, Fr. Nabor Jiménez and Fr. José Alfredo Juarez were also kidnapped in the church of Our Lady of Fatima. Hours later they found them lifeless in a ditch in Poza Rica, Veracruz. The Catholic Church wants clarification on the murders, because it is not yet known who could be the alleged perpetrators.
Pope Francis

Holy See adopts UN Convention against Corruption

September 23, 2016. Pope Francis has asked the Vatican to be exemplary in the fight against corruption and meet the set international standards in this regard. Therefore, the Secretary of State has announced that the Holy See will conform to the Merida Convention against Corruption. This requires countries to implement anti-corruption measures concerning its laws, institutions and practices. From now on, the Roman Curia and the Vatican City State will review its administrative procedures to align them to the standards set by the Convention. Through this compliance, the Vatican says it hopes to contribute to increased transparency and proper management of public affairs in the international community.

What is a canonization process and how does the Church decide who becomes a saint?


The Catholic Church has about 10,000 saints and blesseds. Although this appears like a bulky number, the process of recognizing the sanctity of a person is not easy nor one the Church takes lightly.

The process of beatification and canonization takes years, even decades. In order to begin, a number of conditions must already exist.

"The important thing is that when he or she was alive, there was already a fame of sanctity and this continues even after death. Also that after death, people ask the intercession of the candidate to obtain favors and graces from the Lord."

With these testimonies, the bishop begins the process in the diocese where the requested candidate died. He is then responsible for submitting the request to the Congregation for the Causes of Saints.

"Once this petition is filed, the Congregation responds. If they give a positive response, the Cause begins in the diocese calling on the most significant testimonies, those who knew him or her very well. Testimonies are collected both for and against the person, possibly because there are people who have something to say against the fame of sanctity of the person."

From the beginning this is called the "diocesan phase," where the key figure in the process is the postulator.

"The postulator is the person, lay person or priest who follows the development of the cause and the devotion of the specific candidate. They follow the development of the diocesan phase and they are the one who presents the list of texts for or against the person used in the process."

Once the Congregation for the Causes of Saints checks that the document sent in by the diocese is correct, the "Roman phase" begins.

"When the cause comes to Rome, as there are many ongoing cases, if there is already a miracle that has been studied and presented regarding the candidate, this causes the Congregation to give them priority."

When the cause arrives in Rome, the Congregation asks for a postulator who lives in the city to take the case. The postulator must then prove there has been a miracle through the intercession of the candidate.

The miracle is often the cure of a disease, so the Vatican investigates if it is complete, scientifically inexplicable and permanent. A medical commission, consisting of up to 50 doctors, study these miracles to make sure they meet these characteristics.

The bishops and cardinals of the Congregation must then give a positive verdict on the miracle; and the prefect makes a decree which will be confirmed by the Pope. When Pope approves, a date can be set for the beatification.

That is when the anticipated moment arrives...

The final step before canonization is proof of still another miracle, performed after the beatification and obviously attributed to the intercession of the new Blessed.