Miracle attributed to Ven. John Paul II

Andrea Tornielli reports that yesterday the cardinal and bishop members of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints voted to accept a miracle attributed to the intercession of Ven. John Paul II.  This miracle was the healing of a French woman religious of Parkinson’s Disease.

The Congregation will have to present its decree to His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI who will promulgate it, or not, according to whatever schedule he determines is opportune.

Once the decree of the miracle is promulgated it would remain to fix the date of a possible beatification.

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  1. Fr Matthew says:

    There are more miracles in the pipeline, I’m sure, which should make his canonization possible. I personally met a man who was completely and immediately cured of Crohn’s disease after a novena to the Ven. John Paul the Great. All the medical documentation of his case was being submitted to the Vatican for consideration.
    Santo subito!

  2. irishgirl says:

    This is wonderful news!
    Santo subito, indeed!

  3. Margo says:

    I had heard of that woman and the healing of her Parkinson’s Disease! (I had thought she was a nun.) I seem to remember watching a TV program about it maybe a year or so ago, can’t remember exactly. This is wonderful to hear, and thank you for the update.

  4. Phil_NL says:

    Deo Gratias!

  5. Young Canadian RC Male says:

    That’s great and all, but isn’t there a part of the process where two competing lawyers, one being the “devil’s advocate” have to argue for or against the person’s sainthood, with the devil’s advocate stating whether there is anything that may be cntroversial to the person’s promotion to sainthood? Either that might have been early on, it’s to come, or they’ve fasttracked this quite a bit.

  6. jbosco88 says:

    Am I the only one who doesn’t think Ven Pope John Paul II was a Saint? I think it’s all too much of a celebrity show and “giving the people what they want” – where the “Saint Factory” is obviously very much in action.

    It would have been more sensible to wait at least 50 years… Bl John Henry Newman wasn’t canonised with any great haste.

    Just because it’s fashionable for JPII to still hold publicity, why shouldn’t the Pope who is not in current fashion (Ven Pius XII) not be hastily Canonised?

  7. Sam Urfer says:

    As to the devil’s advocate, according to Rocco Palmo: “the medical examination of the Wojtyla miracle had cleared the scrutiny of the sainthood office — a probe that comes complete with the traditional ‘Devil’s Advocate'”. So it looks like this miracle at least got throughly checked.

    Judging by the interweb discussion, jbosco, you are hardly alone. However, this is not a topic subject to prudential judgement. This process is the considered judgement of the Church, in a magisterial capacity. Nobody will be forced to agree with Ven. John Paul II’s each and every action or word; saints are not impeccable in this life. But seriously; “Roma Locuta Est” applies here perhaps better than anywhere else.

  8. asophist says:

    Are there saints who have brought scandal to the Church? Or would JPII be the first, with his scandalous and blasphemous meeting of religions at Assisi? Interesting.

  9. Chris Garton-Zavesky says:

    Perhaps we should all wait until the canonical process is complete before celebrating his canonization?

    I’m concerned about a hasty process, but what frightens me more is the hysteria in some quarters about anyone who can’t agree with each and every prudential decision His Holiness made. Such hysteria tends to fuel the “Saint Factory” response. Adulation of the very decisions which make good Catholics cringe doesn’t help convince others that he was a saint. One might just as well assert that Martin Luther King was a great man BECAUSE of his moral foibles, not IN SPITE of them.

  10. rtmp723 says:

    I feel like the church is giving into the JPII fan club with this. How would relations with the SSPX be affected by this? I think this fast tracking is a terrible idea. There are many other men and woman that she be topping the list, not JPII.

  11. Nan says:

    It isn’t about the SSPX. The Church can’t make decisions based on what a small group thinks, nor is any possible beatification of Venerable Pius XII to be based on the objections of those who slander him by saying he did nothing for the Jews during WWII.

    This isn’t a popularity contest; if it were, the cries of Santo Subito at Venerable JPII’s funeral would already have won the day.

  12. Geoffrey says:

    Laudetur Iesus Christus! Deo gratias!

    Nan: Well said!

    I wonder if Pope Benedict will break his rule again and beatify John Paul the Great himself?

  13. Phil_NL says:

    We’ve had this dicsussion before, and will have so again, but apperently a couple of things won’t get through….

    1. Canonisation does not mean that Ven. JPII was without sin throughout his life, nor that he never made a mistake, nor that he has a good adminstrator even even a good pope. (IMHO he was the latter, but that doesn’t make an atom of difference). It means he was a saint, pure and simple. There have been plenty of examples of saints that were sinners, that made grevious mistakes, were poor administrators or even poor popes. That’s not relevant. And before one starts about appeasing or offending this group or that: if he is a saint, the Church deserves him as a saint, in fact the Church then has him as a Saint. Regardless of popularity, politics or other issues. That decision is Gods, and his alone, which brings me to the following point:

    2. To the best of my knowledge, canonisation is done under the dogma of infallability. So whether or not the process is slow or fast, rigourously investigated or not at all, if canonised, Ven. JPII is a saint, to be regarded as such by all Catholics. Consequently, it would be bordering on heresy to say that if canonisation takes place, it was too fast/slow, inappropriate or otherwise, cause saints are not made by man, but by God.

  14. Sam Urfer says:

    Pope St. Celestine V is a leading candidate for the most incompetent Pope in the history of the Church, yet he remains one of only a handful of canonized second millennium Popes for his tremendous personal holiness.

  15. NCtrad says:

    Popes are entrusted with the salvation of the souls of their sheep. How many sheep were damned by JPII’s public mockery of the First Commandment at Assisi?

    Could someone, anyone explain to me why JPII was great? I ask this in all seriousness. The Church collapsed into ruin under his watch. Quasi-heretics were elevated to prominent posts and given red hats. The Faith has all but died in traditional Catholic lands. Outside of his heroic defense of the unborn(should be a given for any pope), I can’t find much that should give him the title of “Great.”

  16. Geoffrey says:

    “How many sheep were damned by JPII’s public mockery of the First Commandment at Assisi?”

    Apparently only the Lefebvrists!

    “The Church collapsed into ruin under his watch.”

    I think only very few would consider this, namely Lefebvrists who wanted him to “turn back the clock” and and liberal-progressive-heretics who wanted him to ordain women, abolish contraception, establish a democracy in the Church, etc.

    The fact of the matter is that the Venerable Servant of God did much to save the Church from ruin after the Second Vatican Council. He grabbed the helm of the bark of Peter and kept the ship on as steady of a course as possible, through a relentless storm that came from all sides: progressives, heretics, communists, socialists, and traditionalists. He ushered in the new springtime of the Church and paved the way for the New Evangelization, inspiring a whole generation of Catholics who are now young adults, forming saintly families open to life and “JPII priests” faithful to liturgical rubrics and tradition; all this is being seen now. He also properly interpreted Vatican II though his writings, as Pope Benedict XVI himself said:

    “All this is a rich patrimony that has not yet been assimilated by the Church. My personal mission is… to ensure that his documents are assimilated, because they are a rich treasure, the authentic interpretation of Vatican II” (Polish television interview, 16 October 2005).

  17. Dr. Eric says:

    Great apologia, Sam Urfer. :-)

    I love how people complain about the “fast track” to sainthood, yet have no problem with Sts. Francis of Assisi and Thomas Becket.

  18. Dr. Eric says:

    I can point to seven people I know for a fact who either reverted or became Catholics thanks to The Servant of God, John Paul II… My wife, my five children and myself.


  19. NCtrad says:


    Please detail for me these wonderful fruits of the New Springtime and Evangelization? Please show me the wonderful increase in vocations, large faithful families and strengthening of faith that has occurred since JPII took the reins in 1978. Please show me the increase in orthodoxy both in belief and practice of the Bishops and Cardinals. Please show me the increase in Mass attendance that this wonderful new Springtime ushered in. Please show me the wonderful fruits of the Novus Ordo. I don’t expect you to get back anytime soon with solid numbers and evidence, only more cheerleading for the auto-demolition of the Church that accelerated under the eyes of JPII.

    You, sir, have your head buried firmly in the sand. You are a great ally to the progressives and heretics you mentioned.

  20. Geoffrey says:


    What utter nonsense. I am definitely no ally of heretics or progressives. Lefebvrists are the ones with heads buried in the sand of pre-1962. If you had read my previous comment, I clearly said “all this is being seen now”, not in 1978. Things are happening throughout the world “brick-by-brick”. The older generation is dying off and the “JPII generation” is up and coming, of which I am a member. I believe Fr. Z calls it the “biological solution”. It’s only a matter of time. Christ knows what He is doing, and thank God for that!

  21. NCtrad says:


    The ruin that you see is a direct result of the mismanagement of JPII. The same people you praise for rebuilding the Church “brick by brick” are the same ones who were so instrumental in it’s auto-demolition at and after vatican II.

    So I ask you the direct question. Please explain to me the great fruits of the New Springtime. You sound like 20 something socialists and communists I have spoken to that refuse to see the inherent destruction in the very nature of their political philosophies, but rather blame their total failure on the lack of proper implementation of the principals. The destruction will end, not by a “proper” implementation of Vatican II (whatever that means) but by a return to solid and clear Catholic teaching coming from the Throne of Peter and the bishops. Neo-Catholics stand amidst a destroyed and bombed-out city yet scream from the tops of their lungs “all is well!”

    I pray you open your eyes at some point. The Church will truly start to re-build when Neo-Catholics stop shooting at their true friends while unwittingly helping the out and out modernists run the ship ashore.

  22. Andrew says:


    I think your comments to Geoffrey are very unfair. You may disagree with his enthusiastic support (by the way, I am enthusiastic about it as well!) for John Paul II being declared a saint and might prefer a more sanguine approach to the whole business, but there is absolutely no justification to say that he is an ally of progressives and heretics.

    I grew up in the liberal 1970s, and can I say to you what a purgatorial affliction it was, if you happened to have an orthodox Catholic approach to matters, at that time. I am personally acquainted with some of the people of the progressive mindset you mention, and let me tell you they hated John Paul II, with a vengeance, when his agenda started to be commented on.

    I have discovered that some traditional people who look upon him harshly, were either lapsed from the faith at that time, or were too small to remember this dark times in the Church’s recent history, when things like liturgical dancing and coffee table Masses were flavour of the month!

    In a previous post on a related subject, somebody remarked that considering how he was hated by both the small l liberals, and traditionalists concurrently, he must have been doing something right.

    The reason John Paul is sometimes referred to as the Great, was his role in the downfall of atheistic communism, in Europe. As Lech Walesa once remarked, “Communism would have eventually fallen, but it would have taken a hundred years. Because of this man, it took 10 years”

    I remember the horrible attacks the late Holy Father suffered at the Synod of Bishops for Families in 1980, when he said that a husband who saw his wife purely as a sex object, was in effect, being lustful towards her.

    Remember him being shot on the anniversary date of the first apparition of Our Lady at Fatima in 1981, coming close to death and having to spend months in hospital recovering. Then John Paul visiting Mehmet Ali Agca in his prison cell later on, extending forgiveness to him. That is what a saint is. Someone who has followed Christ to a heroic degree, and Our Lord tell us to forgive your brother not seven times, but seventy times seven times.

    Drawing attention to these things, in no way suggests that John Paul was correct in all of his pastoral decisions, in the life of the Church. Canonizing somebody is never an approval of everything a person did.

    But what about the miraculous evidence? The nun who was bedridden with Parkinson’s Disease, who is now is displaying no more of these symptoms, and can work as a maternity nurse, after her community prayed to John Paul just after he died.

    Once again liberals and modernists have not time for the objective reality of miracles, and they try to disprove those recorded in Scripture.

    One last anecdote. I have met Polish psychiatrist Dr Wanda Poltawska, who collaborated with the late pope for over 50 years. In 1962, she was afflicted with very aggressive cancer, and her friend who as a young bishop was attending the opening session of Vatican Council II, wired Padre Pio, about her condition. As they were about to operate on her, the tumours disappeared.

    She who was part of Bishop Wojtyla’s family ministry in Krakow, later was appointed with her husband Andrei to the Pontifical Council for the Family. Her ideas on contraception influenced Wojtyla’s book, Love and Responsibility which had more influence on Paul VI when he was writing Humanae Vitae, then the majority position on the Papal Commission on Human Reproduction, which advocated a loosening of restrictions here.

    Just remember, it was the liberals who advocated dissent from Humanae Vitae, like the Winnipeg Statement in Canada.

    I can see why this man is regarded as a saint.

  23. NCtrad says:


    I thank you for your thoughtful post. My language was strong and for that I apologize. I meant that by condemning traditionalists who love the Church and want to see Her return to Her glory is, in a way, aiding the true enemies of the Faith who hate the Church.

    Your post was insightful. I shall re-read it. My point is never to judge the personal holiness of the former Pontiff, I have enough concerns and worries regarding my own. My point is that there was an undeniable collapse of the Faith that occurred under his watch. To what extent he was directly or indirectly responsible will be figured out in the years to come. This is also another good reason to wait on the canonization process. If he is a saint, why the hurry?

  24. NCtrad says:

    And with that I take my leave. I apologize to Father for unintentionally de-railing this thread. Pray for me.

  25. Banjo pickin girl says:

    I am just a convert and don’t know anything but doesn’t being a saint mean simply that we are sure they are now in heaven? That is why the presence of miracles is required, it is definitive proof that they are in heaven. I do know that the Church does not teach that saints always bypass purgatory.

  26. albizzi says:

    When one considers the thousands of miracles which happened in Lourdes since one century and half, and that the medical office that is in charge to check everyone only kept about 70 among them as worthy to be declared as true miracles, one may be nothing but frightened regarding the haste the Vatican had to declare as such the first case thas was offered to support JPII’ Beatification.

  27. paulbailes says:

    I hope and pray that JPII is in heaven or if not now then asap.

    However … the problem with his canonisation is that so many people would regard this as a canonisation of his papacy (e.g. see some comments above).

    OTOH, if the decree of canonisation were to give a list of the problems of the JPII papacy which were now being corrected if not already done so far by BXVI, that would not just be instructive but also restorative in a kind of ironic justification of some of his more vociferous supporters above.

  28. Andrew says:

    Dear Albizzi,

    There was no “haste [in which] the Vatican had to declare as such the first case that was offered to support JPII’ Beatification.”

    A number of impending miracles had already been investigated that had supposedly been obtained by John Paul II. This was one was chosen (not because the others weren’t miracles) but possibly because it has been the easiest to prove, and most documented.

    Fr Z spent some time working in the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, and could enlighten us, on how strict their procedures are. [I was never an official of that Congregation. I completed the course offered by the Congregation for those who will be or may be involved in causes as postulators, etc. That said, I can tell you that, from what I studied and saw, they are very rigorous in their examination of the proofs (e.g., scientific evidence) and in consideration of the theological arguments.]

    Parkinson’s Disease is a severe degenerative illness which can go on for sometime, and in the end results in the breakdown of all the bodily systems.

    This nun was so far advanced, she was bedridden. Now the healing of her condition has been so complete, she is back doing her job, as a maternity nurse. Even someone not trained in the medical area like myself, can see that this is a miracle.

    The fact that God granted a miraculous sign so soon after John Paul’s death (two months) is only evidence of how much his sainthood is believed by the faithful, so naturally people will ask for his intercession.

    But in the end who are we to say under what conditions a miracle can be worked. If it happened soon or late in the piece (as in the case of Cardinal Newman’s miracle) we should equally be grateful to God, for showing signs of His providential care.

  29. catholicmidwest says:

    Whatever happened to waiting for a while til the celebrity status winds down????

  30. catholicmidwest says:

    PS, I’m losing my faith in the canonization process a little bit. Too many saints, too soon. We don’t have a proper devil’s advocate procedure anymore. We’re going to mess up and canonize somebody else, somebody obscure, with a secret history if we don’t watch out……

  31. Supertradmum says:


    That type of thing happened in the past with devil’s advocates. I know of one case where a nun was called Venerable, and then after many years, letters were found between her, (she was a foundress of an order-the female line of an established male order) and the then head of the priestly order of the same name, letters wherein a vitriolic and hostile relationship between the two was revealed. This led to a cessation of the cause of holiness for the priest, but the nun’s cause had already gone through. Believe it or not, the letters were found in a trunk under a bed in the order’s main house. However, on the whole, I agree that the streamlining is not a good thing. I do not know why the process was changed. Look how long it took St. Thomas More and St. Edmund Campion to be named saints….

  32. Supertradmum says:

    As to the discussions on Purgatory, do we not all agree that Pope John Paul II suffered his on earth with his terrible illnesses in the last years of his life? And, perhaps Father Z will illuminate us, but I assumed that saints who are canonized do not go to Purgatory-that these people exhibited union with God and holiness, even perfection, on earth. Is this correct?

  33. Tim Ferguson says:

    according to the Vatican website this morning, the beatification is set for May 1, 2011, the Second Sunday of Easter.

  34. Justin Martyr says:

    NC Trad,

    I understand some of your anger and frustration. However, I think it’s counterproductive for two groups of devout Catholics to fire salvos back and forth at each other. Whether you consider yourself to be in the “neo” camp or the “trad” camp, there are millions of devout and orthodox Catholics making up these two groups. I would consider myself a little of both, but I assume you would consider me to be a “neo-Catholic”.

    I love Pope John Paul the Great and Pope Benedict. I pray for reconciliation between the Church and the SSPX, and hope they can return to the fold soon. I have great respect for the entire history of Catholic liturgy. This includes the early Church liturgies of the first few centuries (including the liturgy likely celebrated by the Apostles themselves), the liturgies of the first millennium (both East and West), the liturgies of the early Middle-Ages, the Tridentine liturgy, and yes (gasp), even a reverently and solemnly celebrated Novus Ordo liturgy (such as Pope Benedict celebrates now).

    There doesn’t need to be full-scale war in the Church pitting on one side the so-called “trads” (including SSPX-sympathizers, EF-only proponents, The Remnant and The Wanderer subscribers, etc.)…and on the other side, the so-called “neo-Catholics” (such as EWTN devotees, the Catholic Answers crowd, many prominent and devout converts from Protestantism such as Scott Hahn, Marcus Grodi, etc., and many Catholics, including many priests, who consider themselves JPII-Catholics (most of whom are 25-50 years of age)).

    We all on the same side on most of the issues. Many so called “neo-Catholics” even have a great respect and reverence for the EF. But we may differ in that we don’t think that automatically means we have to have vitriolic hatred, anger and bitterness toward anything and anyone even remotely supportive of the Ordinary Form (properly and reverently celebrated).

    I feel strongly if there were ever a mass-persecution of faithful Christians (let us pray this never comes to pass), where we were ordered to deny Christ, deny the Church and her teachings, or die….many of us so-called “neos” would line up next to the “trads” and would gladly and joyfully give our lives for Christ and His Church. I have little doubt many progressives or lukewarm or CINO Catholics would deny Christ or would seek to cut a deal to save their own skin.

    My final point is this….in my opinion, and along the lines of other posters above, JPII did not create and accelerate the destructive changes in the Church. I completely disagree with your assertion that there was “an undeniable collapse of the Faith” under JPII. I’d argue just the opposite occurred. The collapse had largely already taken place in the 60’s and 70’s (nuns shedding their habits, widespread liturgical abuse, priests counseling married couples to ignore Church teachings on sexual issues, Catholic colleges subscribing to the Land O’Lakes movement, homosexuals and perverts entering seminaries, being ordained priests, abusing children, having secret wives/families, etc.) Those changes took place largely and most significantly between 1965-1978. That didn’t start or accelerate under JPII’s watch. The Barque of Peter had severe damage, was leaking, and was headed toward a collision with the rocky shore and was in danger of sinking. JPII did his best to plug the leaks, conduct makeshift repairs, and keep the ship off the rocks. All the while, many of the progressive bishops and priests on the ship with him were actively working to damage and sink her themselves.

    It could have been worse….we could still be subject in 2011 to large-scale and widespread abuses like liturgical dancing, clown/puppet masses, “song and dance” homilists, luke-warm/relativist teaching coming out of Rome on the moral and social issues of the day. The number of bishops willing to tolerate such things (at least in the U.S.) is a far smaller percentage than the bishops who tolerated or even encouraged such things in the 1970’s and 1980’s. JPII and Benedict have remade the episcopacy and have greatly improved the orthodoxy and obedience of the hierarchy compared to where it was in 1975 or 1978.

    Instead, compared to 30 years ago or so, the TLM is much more widely available and is considered more mainstream in many places in the Church. Most priests younger than 50 year old have a greater respect for Latin, for traditional devotions, for ad orientem, for “smells and bells,” for traditional architecture and art, for traditional liturgical music and chant than the priests ordained between 1960-1980 typically do. What if someone like Cardinal Carlo Maria Montini had been elected pope? What if someone even more progressive than that had been elected instead of JPII?

    By the way, who ordained Fr. Z and who was Pope when Ecclesia Dei was formed? Who put a lover of tradition and the EF like Cardinal Ratzinger in charge of CDF? Would we even have shepherds like Bishop Bruskewitz, Cardinal Burke, Archbishop Chaput, etc? All these were elevated to the episcopacy under JPII’s watch. I doubt they would have stood a chance had some much more progressive Cardinal been elected in 1978. In light of this, I don’t see how you can seriously argue he destroyed the Church more than he helped it when we literally stood on the brink of disaster in the mid to late 1970’s.

    He wasn’t perfect by any measure….but he had great personal holiness, was considered a mystic in the great mystical tradition of the Church, upheld many moral and social teachings of the Church even in the face of great opposition both inside and outside the Church. And he inspired millions of devout, faithful Catholics around the world. His intercession is apparently responsible for one confirmed miracle (and many other possible miracles). If God saw JPII in the same light you see him, how could such miracles even be possible? It could have been much worse…..JPII probably saved the Church….he didn’t destroy it.

  35. JonM says:

    I love how people complain about the “fast track” to sainthood, yet have no problem with Sts. Francis of Assisi and Thomas Becket.

    Talk about apples to oranges. St. Thomas Becket spent much of his life in exile, falsely accused of crimes by Henry II. Thomas Becket embraced a brutal martyrdom as culmination of his steadfast commitment to the rights of the Church in an office he did not even want.

    St. Francis’s life is so thoroughly documented with miraculous events (animals following his preaching and being tamed, stigmata, etc.) not to mention clear, concrete work performed in spreading the faith (e.g., offering to walk through fire, stunning the Muslim ruler, to demonstrate his faith in the Church.)

    A common thread to both men: after some point in their lives, they each embraced, promoted, communicated, and sought to live out the faith in an unambiguous manner.

    Without rehashing the specific criticisms, the simple truth is that Pope John Paul II did not embrace, promote, communicate, and live out the faith in an unambiguous manner.

    Again, just because many are taking the position that John Paul II should not be canonized, that should not be taken to mean that he is thus seen as completely horrible, wicked, etc. There is much gray in his record, [Do you understand that there was already a decree issued about his having lived a life of heroic virtue?] much of which is still unclear, and therefore he should not be canonized.

    [First, this is a beatification, not a canonization. Second, what you seem to be objecting to was the previous stage of the cause, which is complete and over. That was about John Paul’s life of heroic virtue. You seem to think he was not holy. Third, in what way are you competent to make that claim? Did you take part in the canonical process in some role and have a differing view? Do you have some unknown proofs that needed to be shared with the Congregation in Rome? Have you reviewed the positio? Are you able to speak about the man’s personal holiness in such a certain way?]

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