The skewed perspective of a conservative Catholic employee-side employment lawyer living in the most exciting city in the Milky Way, Las Vegas, Nevada USA, who listens to a lot of really strange music and who, for some reason, lives and dies St. Louis Cardinal baseball

5/13/2005

Sainthood for the Great John Paul II

Mixed emotions from this report: "Process begins for John Paul's sainthood."

Normally, a person is not eligible to be considered for sainthood until at least five years have passed since passage from life to death. John Paul II went to the next life only a month ago.

I trust the Church absolutely on the idea of saint-making, or, more appropriately, saint-recognition. If anyone in the last thousand years is more worthy of an accelerated saint-declaration process than Karol Wojtyla, I am not aware. But still, need there be an accelerated process at all? Even for the Great John Paul II and, as worthy, Mother Teresa?

The Catholic Church does not "create" saints. It merely recognizes ones whose deeds following death cause us to know that they are in Heaven. If you believe this, as I do, then the purpose of the five-year "cooling off period" is in place to prevent the emotions of the moment from being confused with the directives from the Holy Spirit. The mixed emotions are not in regard to either John Paul II or Mother Teresa. It is fear of future line-drawing. These two are obvious candidates. But will the next candidate for accelerated sainthood be on par with these two? (And, indeed, how could he? or she?)

Pope Benedict XVI and the saint-making machinery at the Vatican know better than I. I trust them to do what is right. Nevertheless, I have some trepidation about accelerating the number of accelerations, notwithstanding the obvious sainthood of the Great John Paul II.
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