JPII Beatification in 2010?

NCReg has this.  The article in La Stampa:

 JPII Beatification in 2010?

Posted by Tom McFeely

Wednesday, March 18, 2009 3:06 PM

According to the Italian daily La Stampa, John Paul II will be beatified on April 2, 2010 — the fifth anniversary of his death.

Reporter Giacomo Galeazzi reports that thanks to an acceleration in the beatification process, documents pertaining to John Paul’s cause, called the “positio,” have already been forwarded by a commission of theologians to be examined by cardinals .

“This is very good news,” says Msgr. Tadeusz Pieronek, the Polish priest who has been responsible for the diocesan phase of the beatification process in Krakow, La Stampa reported.

La Stampa adds that in early March, John Paul II’s former secretary, Cardinal Stanislaw Dziwisz of Krakow, said that the beatification process would be “finished in a few months.”

According to Cardinal Dziwisz, Pope Benedict XVI “wants to close the cause as soon as it is practical — the world demands it.”

La Stampa’s Galeazzi reports that in the last ten days the work of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints has undergone “a marked acceleration,” and consequently the late Pope will be proclaimed Blessed “earlier than expected.” He writes that only “new and unforeseen elements” could delay it.

The Vatican has neither officially confirmed or denied the news, which originated in the Polish media.

Pope Benedict XVI opened John Paul II’s beatification process soon after becoming Pope, and waived the rule that causes should not be investigated until five years after a candidate’s death. At the end of the diocesan phase, a miracle was discovered of a French nun, allegedly cured of Parkinson’s disease after praying to John Paul II.

However, not everyone at the Vatican is happy that John Paul II’s cause is proceeding so swiftly, mainly because there is still much the Church hasn’t been able to investigate about him. And the critics argue that the Church won’t know these details for some time because certain documents will be kept locked in the Vatican archives for many years to come.

“If the Vatican moves too quickly, it will be in danger of beatifying a personality rather than the person himself,” cautioned one official to the Register.

Still, those who worked with John Paul have little doubt about his sanctity.

“For me, John Paul II is a saint,” the former prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, Cardinal José Saraiva Martins, has said.

— Edward Pentin

I was trained by the Congregation for Causes of Saints in their course for postulators and those involved in causes.  I know something of the procedure.

I was at the funeral of John Paul II.  I remember in incredible sound of the people, their chant "Santo subito".  I wondered at the time: "Am I experiencing here a ‘vox populi’ moment?"

Even after that I say, take your time, folks, unless the proofs for the cause submitted become compelling.

Here is the article in La Stampa.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. Antiquarian says:

    Popes have been canonized in the past without having been great administrators– or even great popes. Celestine V was even placed in the Inferno by Dante, but was canonized in spite of his activities as a pope.

  2. Andy K. says:

    Bl. Pope Pius XII….

    Archbishop Fulton Sheen….

    The list probably does go on.

    I am not in favor of “fast-tracking” anyone for sainthood. The process *should* be they cannot be canonized for over one generation. But that’s me.

  3. EDG says:

    I don’t like the idea of such rapid proceedings. It just looks – well, unseemly, as if they’ve got to hurry up and get it done.

    And I do think his governance of the Church should be factored in. Interestingly, I read something a few days ago on a foreign blog where a number of people were attacking BXVI and contrasting him to JPII (whom they liked because of his lax attitude to Church discipline and his completely hands-off style). I think if the canonization moves forward rapidly, it is going to become an occasion for bashing BXVI.

    It is also, IMHO, an attempt to take the focus off BXVI and put it on JPII. Granted, many of his current fans during his lifetime regarded him as too orthodox, but he was clearly a lot more willing to turn a blind eye to unorthodoxy than has been BXVI. They got away with a lot more, and they did so for more than two decades. Because JPII was a media personality who had American Idol type mass popularity, I think they will attempt to use him as a contrast to BXVI. Maybe I’m too paranoid and suspicious of the machinations of the forces in the Vatican who don’t like BXVI, but the timing of this seems questionable to me.

  4. Geoffrey says:

    I highly recommend reading “A Life with Karol” by Stanislaw Cardinal Dziwisz. It sheds light on many of the issues that traditionalists have a problem with. Read it.

    Regarding the silly story of kissing the Koran: I have heard that in Polish culture it is customary to kiss a gift upon receiving it.

    Ioannes Paulus Magnus, ora pro nobis!

  5. JPII’s governance should be a factor, but clearly it need not be the decisive factor. After all, Pope Celestine V, whose five-month pontificate was disastrous, is a saint — and was in fact canonized less than 20 years after his death.

    Personally, I want the holy, devout, incredibly intelligent, outstandingly courageous and thoroughly lovable Pope Pius XII to be canonized first.

  6. toomey says:

    That is fine, but, I wonder how long it will be before Benedict XVI is beatified after his death. Wow, what a scream from the liberals THAT action will evoke.

  7. Clinton says:

    Well put, Antiquarian. It is not my place to judge popes. However, it is the place for the Congregation for the Causes of Saints. Festina

  8. Rose says:

    EDG has a point (actually it struck me immediately that this was the point.) Pray for Pope Benedict.

  9. I think the strong suggestion of universal salvation which ran through John Paul’s papl term would argue against his canonization. When one considers Assisi I and Assisi II, when Cdl Ratzinger balked at attending Assisi I, when one considers that JP II canonized more saints(?) than any pope in recent memory, causing Pope Benedict to shut off the “saint machine” when he became pope, certainly these argue for thoroughness. Not to be invidious, but when we realize that JP II was so loved and Benedict is so despised as he speaks so clearly on moral, liturgical and hierarchical issues, I prefer the counter-cultural pope as he is closer to Christ who was also despised.

  10. Jason says:

    I don’t agree with pitting Benedict XVI vs. John Paul II. They are both holy men, with their own gifts to the Church. And Pope Benedict is one of the greatest admirers of Pope John Paul II! If you value Benedict’s opinion, then consider that he himself wants to see Pope John Paul II canonized.

  11. Garrett says:

    I’m with all of this, as long as Benedict the Great is canonized as soon as possible upon his earthly repose!

  12. Ron says:

    Or, Garrett, while we are speeding up the process, why can’t we just canonize him now? :)

    Pax Christi tecum

  13. Luiz says:

    1. Take a look in the life of Saint Peter Celestine before the papacy. As far as I’m concerned, he lived as an eremite, until after being elected Pope in a disturbed political situation.
    2. “…signs of respect for other religions”. We are supposed to respect the One Holy Catholic Church, the Catholic Faith, the Truth, not false religions and their books, symbols, sacred places etc. Imagine if the first missionaries had “respected” the sacred trees, the pagan altars etc…

  14. Chris says:

    So what happens when we rush this and, a few years later, someone looks back and realized he reigned over one of the most, if not the most, destructive time in the Church’s history?

    What does that say about the infallibility of this process?

  15. I find myself in the unusual position of agreeing with “Ken” — up to a point.

    I don’t know how much of what happened during his pontificate I can place at the feet of John Paul II. He practically admitted at the offset that administration was not his strong suit. Sometimes that can explain an ascetic personality, other times it’s just not a good sign. Meanwhile, in my diocese, a new high school has been named for “John Paul the Great,” a decision which I find presumptuous at best, and tasteless at worst. There is a reason the Church takes her time in raising one of Her sons or daughters to the altar. In the course of determining their “heroic virtue,” you sometimes learn that someone was good, but maybe not so great. And while it is true that cults of devotion were once based upon spontaneous proclamation at the local level, there’s a reason we don’t rely on the “santo subito” approach like we used to.

    If we spent nearly as much time praying for him as we spent telling each other to pray TO him, we’d be better off. Chances are he would be as well. Pray for him, but let Mother Church do what she must, with care and with deliberation.

  16. Melchior Cano says:

    @Stephanie’s comment that Paul’s words were hateful, I’d like to offer a consideration. While Paul may not have demonstrated great tact in making his point, the fact remains that the actions of the late Holy Father in those circumstances were “hateful,” in so far as they were detrimental to the Church’s constant teaching against syncretism and avoiding events which lead to indifferentism. As far as the previous comment that it is a Polish custom, I find this hard to believe. If that were so, why wouldn’t those defending this action just point to the thousands of pictures of Pope John Paul II kissing other gifts from dignitaries and heads of state. They can’t, because he didn’t kiss those gifts.

    This is a tough situation. Its clearly best to let sleeping dogs lie and those of us who see in the late Holy Father’s Pontificate something close to an unmitigated disaster for the teaching on the unique and special character of the Church, who believe in a true reading (not a feenyite reading) of the Catholic doctrine that Outside the Church, there is no Salvation, would much rather avoid criticizing the late Holy Father for no reason. However, the fact remains that this is not an emotional issue. If Catholics want to stand up and promote him as “the Great” or call for “santo subito” then they should be ready for Catholic traditionalists to make reasoned, but firm opposition to this. In fact, the detriment to the faith caused by those actions is shown in your own post: You said: “I think many of us look at those actions as signs of respect for other religions.” You mean, false religions, whose “gods” according to the Scripture, are devils. Yes, we object to that very notion, that respect should be shown to a religion that confirms people in their blindness, rips souls from the Church and spreads its poison through the entire world. No respect should be shown to those religions, even if a proper respect should be shown to their adherents. And yet, we’ve lost that sense of zeal.

  17. Ron says:

    David L Alexander, I agree 100% with your comments. Very well and wisely said.

    Pax Christi tecum

  18. I do love JPII, and I have sought his intercession for the Church and for my own vocation from time to time, and his personal sanctity is hardly to be doubted. That said, I do believe that we need to take our time with such things. Beatification is not a democratic process or an appeal to popularity – it is ultimately the recognition of signs from God that a person has indeed been received into the Church Triumphant. The Church should proceed with an ear attuned to the divine, not to man’s desire for another great saint. If the Holy Father has indeed been received into the Church Triumphant, we will know in good time, and we need not rush.

  19. Melchior Cano says:

    Let us who oppose this initiative take some level of solace in the fact that, while canonizations are held by the common teaching of theologians to be infallible, beatifications are not. Deo Gratias.

  20. Captain Go-Go says:

    I would have thought JPII’s very vigorous support of the Legionaries of Christ and his holding the scoundrel Fr. Marcel Maciel in the highest esteem and calling him \”an efficacious guide to you\” would be enough to put a kabosh on the process.

  21. mike conlon says:

    Just who was Karel Wojtyla? Some years ago, when HH visited Enland, Catholic World Rpeort carried a side bar article concerning Polish gentleman who wanted to meet JPII as they were acquainted during the war. In Poland? No, he answerd. JPII stayed with my family when he was visiting England during the war. He produced a bible dated & inscribed by K.W. If his claim was true, who was it that was able to get K.W. not only out of Poland, but also back in. I will have to olok through my old numbers. CWR claims no knowledge of the article. Then too, after the war, he became a secretary/interpreter for a KGB colonel. He admitted that. Who was this man, really.

  22. Jason says:

    why wouldn’t those defending this action just point to the thousands of pictures of Pope John Paul II kissing other gifts from dignitaries and heads of state. They can’t, because he didn’t kiss those gifts.

    If I recall, I believe Pope John Paul II kissed the ground whenever he stepped off an airplane.

  23. Chris says:

    Can someone tell my why in the world they’re seeking the intercession of a man whom we have no idea right now where he is?

    I love Pope Pius XII but I have never, ever prayed to him. How do I know the state of his soul when he died?

    This fundemental misunderstanding of Catholic Theology is a perfect example of the kind of confusion that stemmed from JPII’s pontificate — and the exact reason he shouldn’t be rushed to be canonized.

  24. Timothy says:

    While I think sound arguments can be made for slowing down the canonization process, if the Church does declare JPII a saint, shouldn’t we all rejoice that another son of the Church is in heaven?

  25. Melchior Cano says:


    You’ll readily admit that this is a totally different thing, wouldn’t you think? We’re talking about kissing a gift handed to him. You can’t point to a situation where he kissed the ground in different circumstances are proof that he did this. Your argument is absurd on its face.

  26. Matt Q says:

    I’m a little unsettled by this. I agree with Father Z in that this may lean more towards beatifying on personality rather than actual virtue. There are many great things about John Paul but those alone do not a beatification make. If there’s truth to his greatness, and I believe there is–even though there many things I believe he handled poorly–so let it come out, the greatness uncovered as they investigate.

    It’s also quite odd that a beatification date has even been suggested. When was John Paul even declared Venerable? Too soon too quickly.

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