John Paul II will soon be a Saint: the recognition of Karol Wojtyla’s second miracle is nigh

by Giacomo Galeazzi
Vatican City, 14th. Oct.
(From Vatican Insider)

Karol Wojtyla will soon become a saint. Salesian Cardinal, Angelo Amato is working on an evaluation of the second miracle attributed to John Paul II. Joseph Ratzinger’s “minister”, in charge of following the process of canonization and beatification throughout the Catholic Church, is trying to counter sceptics inside and outside the Curia who want to slow down a process begun as a result of overwhelming public pressure, by speeding things up.

And he stated he was close to recognising the second miracle to be attributed to Karol Wojtyla, the Polish Pope who was so loved across the entire Catholic spectrum. The case of scientifically unexplainable healing, was placed “under investigation” by the Vatican minister for the Causes of Saints. In order to be canonised, following his beatification last 1 March, Karol Wojtyla needs to be receive the Holy See recognition of a second miracle.

A great number of miraculous healings attributed to John Paul II have already been closely examined by the Postulation of the former pope’s canonization cause. One, in particular, is considered to be ideal and especially important in order for Karol Wojtyla to be catapulted to sainthood, following the occurrence that allowed Benedict XVI to proclaim his immediate predecessor Blessed; that is, the healing of the French nun, Sister Marie Simon-Pierre form Parkinson’s disease, the same illness that the last phase of his Pontificate into a nightmare. The Vatican assured that the other miracle which took place after his beatification will be analysed with no hurry and with usual scruple. The Vatican has also said Joseph Ratzinger’s decision to elevate John Paul II to sainthood has been the cause of much joy among the Catholic community across the world. The second miracle attributed to the Blessed John Paul II, must be recognised by the Congregation for the Causes of Saints on behalf of the deceased pope. The dossier of miracles attributed to Karol Wojtyla is constantly being updated with new testimonies.

Before the beatification, the Holy See took numerous other miracles into account, for example that of a man who was saved in Cleveland in the United States, from a serious head wound caused by a firearm and a Polish child who was paralysed at the legs bust all of a sudden started walking again, after having prayed at the tomb of John Paul II.

The healing of the Polish child, also received the approval of Cracow’s Archbishop, Stanislao Dziwisz, Karol Wojtyla’s right hand man in Poland and in the Vatican for four years. Cardinal Dziwisz witnessed the little boy who had sat immobile in his wheelchair because of a tumour in his kidneys, “walk after visiting the tomb of John Paul II in the Vatican grottoes.” The cardinal affirmed: “I have born witness to so many acts of grace bestowed by John Paul II. Especially on people who were suffering from tumours. The Polish boy is 9 years old, he is from Danzica, and he could not walk because he had kidney cancer. He was taken to the tomb of John Paul II in his wheelchair. There, he prayed and when he came out of St. Peter’s Basilica, to the astonishment of his parents, he said: “I want to walk.” He got up and started walking.” On the day of his funeral, thousands of people called out: “John Paul II for saint.”

In Cleveland, in the American state of Ohio, a 26 year old boy who had suffered a serious head injury during a mugging was saved and regained his health just when doctors had started to give up hope. The hospital chaplain endorsed the fact that this prodigious act of healing was due to a blessed rosary used by John Paul II. In January 2006, a website was launched to gather the testimonies of Catholics who had witnessed or received acts of grace or miracles after the death of John Paul II, in support of the process of beatification of Karol Wojtyla.

Tens of thousands of messages were sent to the website, available in five languages. In order to assess the candidacy for beatification, the Catholic Church requires proof of “signs” witnessed following the death of a figure in the odour of sanctity. Thus, as of 13 May, when Pope Benedict XVI agreed a dispensation of a five year wait from the death of an individual, after which, the process of beatification could begin, it was decided that testimonies were to be collected  via internet from across the world, in Italian, Polish, English, French and Spanish. Catholics were impatient and did not want to wait for ecclesiastical bureaucracy. Messages were posted on the website asking for Wojtyla to be made a saint immediately and the appeal was also made at his funeral on 8 April 2005. There are dozens of cases of people who were healed by the Polish pope: a 34 year old woman from Palermo was cured of breast cancer out of the blue; a little deaf boy from Baltimore, all of a sudden gained perfect hearing before his gobsmacked doctor; a Mexican bride who had wanted a child for a long time, finally gave birth, despite doctors saying that her state of health made this impossible.

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17 Responses to John Paul II will soon be a Saint: the recognition of Karol Wojtyla’s second miracle is nigh

  1. I need a Miracle for the release of my granddaughter from Federal Prison in the USA she is a Canadian citizen, please pray for a miracle for her early release she is on her second year of being incarcerated and her young son crys for his Mother, he only has one wish and that is for his Mother to come home now, he cries himself to sleep he just had his 6th Birthday on September 29th and his name is ?Robert Nolan and he is being raised by his maternal grandmother and is being educated in a local Catholic School in British Columbia, Canada (Holy Trinity) my granddaughters name is Krysta Anne Edwards and she is in Dublin California Federal Correctional Institute, through desperation financially she agreed to be a drug mule, she also suffers terribly from Rheumatoid arthritis and was unable to work, Please God hear my plea for her return home as soon as posssible. Peace be with you and God Bless you.

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  2. Wall Eyed Mr Whippy says:

    I am so sorry for your pain.

    I hope you may find some peace in a terrible situation. You are doing all you possibly can, and no-one can ask more. Please be kind to yourself.

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  3. Kerberos says:

    “….trying to counter sceptics inside and outside the Curia who want to slow down a process begun as a result of overwhelming public pressure, by speeding things up.”

    ## There are worse ideas than “speeding up” a hoped-for canonisation – but not many. The Pope’s numerous acts of questionable wisdom/orthodoxy do not exactly make his cause overwhelmingly or obviously that of a Saint. There badly needs to be a good interbal for people to assess his pontificate and character without euphoria, lack of balance, or other causes of distortion that lead to viewing people in a rosier – or gloomier – light than is appropriate. A real Saint will be as holy as after 500 years as after 5 – only a “celeb” has to be honoured without an interval for getting one’s breath. The hurry is unworthy of the importance of the great matter, and make the postulators seem to be afraid lest the cause is de-railed by unwelcome discoveries. Something so weighty in its implications demands the most careful and lengthy consideration – not this incontinent & frivolous rush that is almost a panic.

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  4. teresa says:

    Kerberos, I think there are different types of Saints, those who are popular, and those who are highly esteemed but not so cherished by the common people.

    For example, Elisabeth of Hungary/Thüringen/Thuringia, was a very popular Saint, already days after her death miracles were reported and attributed to her. Her daughter asked her adversaries to swear upon the relic of her Saint mother.

    Thomas Aquinas was already quite quickly declared a Saint, but not too much owning to his popularity (he was a scholar and thus didn’t have too much contact with common people), but much due to the effort of his teacher Albertus Magnus.

    Then we have St. Bernard of Clairvaux, who was regarded a Saint even during his life time. We have Thomas Beckett, when he was slaughtered, people laid their cloaks in his blood to take it with them home.

    But then one of my favourite Saint, Cardinal Robert Bellarmin, was only canonized in 1923, 300 years after his death, because there had always been a party in the Church which tried to hinder his beatification (as his writings are not to their taste). He is a great Saint, Humanist, balanced mind, great intelligence and diligence, but he is not so popular as some very well known Saints like Francis of Assisi.

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  5. kathleen says:

    Yes Teresa, sometimes great saints are not canonised for many a year due to some unpopularity with members of the Church or because other obstacles over certain issues hinder the process. St Joan of Arc was one of these; she had to wait centuries!…….. And I believe the saintly Pope Pius XII will be another.

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  6. I don’t think we have to wait centuries for Pope John Paul X11 to be canonised, he has already fulfilled all the criteria for Sainthood and the Vatican has all the proof. May we pray in earnest for his canonisation to be sooner than later….

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  7. Kerberos says:

    A few thoughts:

    Name – interval between death & canonisation
    _____ _______________________________
    St Thomas Aquinas – 49 years
    Boethius – 1359 years
    St.Pius V – 140
    St. Thomas More – 400 years
    St. Bernard of Clairvaux – 21 years
    St. Robert Bellarmine – 309 years
    St. Philip Neri – 27 years
    St. Teresa of Avila – 40 years
    St. Francis de Sales – 43 years
    St. Dominic Guzman – 13 years
    St. Alfonso Liguori – 52 years
    St. Dominic Savio – 97 years
    St. Francis of Assisi – 2 years

    John Paul II – beatified 6 years after death

    Dozens of names could be listed. There is a difference of scale, between “speeding up” the cause of someone whose career raises many difficult questions, whose holiness is by no means beyond question; and a Saint of the stature of St. Francis of Assisi, who lived before the canonical process had attained its very strict and searching character under Urban VIII. The old process for examining causes of thoise with a reputation for holiness was extremely minute, and one can be morally certain that the late Pope’s cause would either have fallen early on, as many causes did; or languished for centurires; or been interrupted because of the difficulties it raises. The haste of the whole business has an unpleasant taste of “consumer impatience” about it – as though even canonical processes for reputedly holy persons are to be treated as items with a “sell by date” that “consumers” “must have”, and have now. Is patience no longer held in honour ?
    A Pope is not an obscure layman, or even an obscure parish priest; he’s a Pope, & he of all men in the Church has a responsibility to God and the faithful to be a model of Christian virtue in all he does and says. And this without mentioning the enormous evil of canonising someone who is not a Saint. To rush so weighty a business as this is, would be unforgivable; it would be appalling frivolity. Several of these Saints had a reputation for holiness even in life – you mentioned St. Bernard. Did the late Pope ?
    And what about the objections ? One thinks of his failure to allow Maciel or Cardinal Groer be investigated – would a Saint be taken in by an impostor like Maciel ? Many Saints were very good at detecting such people; but the late Pope was not. Can it really be said that this does not matter ? Maciel is very relevant: for this “speeding things up” is the kind of attitude that came dangerously close to lumbering the Church with St. Marcial Maciel Degollado, Founder of the Legionaries of Christ. It could so easily have happened: his accusers might have continued to be ignored; he might have died in honour; a cause could easily have been begun, and only the good been said of him, while other matters went unheard; the accusations could have been seen as evidence of a likeness to falsely-accused Saints, such as Saint Alfonso; and he might have been beatified, then canonised, and the accusations have been heeded only later. Since even the meagre waiting period of five years was dispensed for the cause of the late Pope, so it could begin “subito”, it is not beyond imagining that a cause for Maciel could have been dispensed.
    There are so many objections to the hastiness being – it seems – advocated for the progress of this cause, that one hardly knows where to begin. It’s as though the cause was being hurried through so the Pope could be canonised come what may – but how can so long and eventful a life, which has left behinds mountains of paper, possibly be maturely and minutely examined in a mere six years ? How can the witnesses, from so many different places, all be heard, and the objections dealt with ? Besides, there are still doubts about the first miracle – are these others any more certainly miraculous ? I hope so. Even if they are, their miraculousness would not cancel the questions that arises from some of the Pope’s acts.

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  8. kathleen says:

    A very interesting argument Kerberos! In 1983 Bl. Pope John Paul II did away with the ‘Devil’s Advocate’ (a canon lawyer appointed by Church authorities to argue against the canonization of the candidate)……… was that a wise decision I wonder?

    This from Wiki:
    “It was their job to take a skeptical view of the candidate’s character, to look for holes in the evidence, to argue that any miracles attributed to the candidate were fraudulent, etc. The Devil’s advocate opposed God’s advocate (Latin: advocatus Dei; also known as the Promoter of the Cause), whose task is to make the argument in favor of canonization. This task is now performed by the Promoter of Justice (promotor iustitiae), who is in charge of examining how accurate is the inquiry on the saintliness of the candidate.
    The office was established in 1587 during the reign of Pope Sixtus V and abolished by Pope John Paul II in 1983. This reform changed the canonization process considerably, helping John Paul II to usher in an unprecedented number of elevations: nearly 500 individuals were canonized and over 1,300 were beatified during his tenure as Pope as compared to only 98 canonizations by all his 20th-century predecessors, which has led many to question the validity of the process and whether all of those canonized today are deserving of the recognition. Such a dramatic increase suggests that the office of the Devil’s Advocate had served to reduce the number of canonizations. It is argued that it served a useful role in ensuring that canonizations did not proceed without due care and hence the status of sainthood was not easily achieved.”

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  9. kathleen says:

    I am not suggesting that Pope John Paul II should not be canonized; I certainly believe in his saintliness. There are so many miracles attributed to his intervention, it would be practically impossible to question the authenticity of all of them.

    But Kerberos does certainly make an important point when he mentions Pope JP II’s lack of judgement (human failing ?) when he refused to allow the infamous Marcial Maciel to be investigated!!

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  10. JabbaPapa says:

    True kathleen, but Saints are people, not angels ; and they have human failings, instead of being absolutely perfect creatures.

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  11. toadspittle says:

    .

    Toad supposes it all depends on what one means by ‘Saint.’

    Apparently the Devil’s Advocate didn’t have much to say about Escriva.
    Not an ‘absolutely perfect’ creature. But then, as Jabba so absolutely perfectly points out – who is?.
    It would seem then, that when Popes nominate candidates for sainthood, they are not speaking infallibly.
    Surely they ought to be, in these cases?
    At least we’d know where we were.

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  12. toadspittle says:

    .

    a Mexican bride who had wanted a child for a long time, finally gave birth, despite doctors saying that her state of health made this impossible.

    That will teach doctors to be careful what they say is ‘impossible’. (Unless she had had her womb removed, which Toad doubts.)

    But, surely, ‘reporting’ this kind of incident can bring nothing but oprobrium and contumely down upon Catholicism?

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  13. teresa says:

    Thanks Kathleen and Kerberos, what you brought up is very interesting, I didn’t know about the Devil’s advocate before.

    I am just thinking that perhaps nowadays it is hard for a Pope not to make mistakes, being the manager of such a global enterprise like our Church. To see through an impostor is not as easy as one thinks, some impostors are very sly, and Pope John Paul II certainly didn’t have enough time to get to know him.

    I am neither arguing pro nor contra the case of Pope JPII, I just want to say that if holiness is understood as “doing nothing wrong”, there will certainly extremely rare to have a Pope beatified, not in our modern society, when a Pope is taken into account for every scandal happened on the globe, and when everything is known in seconds with the help of mass media and blogs…

    And how much do and can we know about the historical Saints, what we know is mostly from Hagiographers, and historical research strives to reconstruct a more realistic picture of them, but the sources are limited. Just a thought …

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  14. kathleen says:

    Sorry for the delay in responding Jabba. You say: “True kathleen, but Saints are people, not angels ; and they have human failings, instead of being absolutely perfect creatures.

    Yes of course. And Saints are made from those who have heroically overcome their fragile human weaknesses successfully enough to follow the Way of the Cross to the bitter end in spite of their imperfections.
    The point which I didn’t make clear when I questioned Bl. Pope John Paul II’s ‘human failing’ was whether this mistake (in not having Marcial Maciel investigated when the first rumours appeared) was due to his own simple carelessness, or to the deceit, slyness, arrogance etc. of those who advised him.

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  15. kathleen says:

    Toad asks:
    “It would seem then, that when Popes nominate candidates for sainthood, they are not speaking infallibly.
    Surely they ought to be, in these cases?”

    I’m not sure about this Toad. (Perhaps someone could enlighten us?) Although according to the Catholic Encyclopedia:

    Is the pope infallible in issuing a decree of canonization? Most theologians answer in the affirmative………… What is the object of this infallible judgment of the pope? Does he define that the person canonized is in heaven or only that he has practiced Christian virtues in an heroic degree?…… The formula used in the act of canonization has nothing more than this:
    “In honour of . . . we decree and define that Blessed N. is a Saint, and we inscribe his name in the catalogue of saints, and order that his memory by devoutly and piously celebrated yearly on the . . . day of . . . his feast”.”

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  16. Carol Taylor says:

    The older I get the more I recognize that the Catholic and Eastern Orthodox churches have had TWO THOUSAND YEARS to develop their proceedures. Deliberation is required. I think Pope John Paul II will stand out in the history of the Church no matter when his sainthood is or is not declated.
    His resolution and elevation of Sister Faustina is a wonderful example of how people can repair any negligence regarding sanctification.
    I agree with Kerberos below – saints are just as holy 500 years from now.

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  17. johnhenrycn says:

    Some very good comments on this thread. In fact all of them, thus far, are insightful, informed and interesting.

    Feel so sorry for Sally Anne Scott’s daughter, and I will for sure be praying for her early return to her home country, despite what she may have done to deserve her present predicament . The American justice system is a very cruel machine, as a reading of Conrad Black’s recent memoir, A Matter of Principle makes depressingly clear:

    http://www.amazon.ca/Matter-Principle-Conrad-Black/dp/0771016700/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1354660805&sr=1-1

    Just a suggestion, Sally: there is a “Prayer Intentions” section on this website, and in order that your prayer request may receive wider exposure, you might wish to post it there, as well as here.
    ___
    I hope JPII is canonized; but share the discomfort of others here about the alacrity of the process in his case, and indeed, I also agree with others that the termination of the office of “Devil’s Advocate” was a mistake.
    ___

    Just a little anecdote about JPII that always makes me smile: In 1958, he was on a canoeing holiday in the Carpathian Mountains when he received word that he was to return forthwith to Warsaw for a meeting with Stefan Cardinal Wyszyński. Of course, he did so, and he was then told that Pope Pius XII had decided to appoint him auxiliary bishop of Kraków. The Cardinal asked Fr Wojtyla if he had any questions, and that dear man of action (if there ever was one) replied: “Yes, where do I sign?”

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