VATICAN INSIDER: JANET MORANA AND CATHOLIC-INSPIRED NGOS – POPE URGES SCRUPULOSITY, ACCURACY IN INVESTIGATING SAINTHOOD

Happy Anniversary to Pope Francis who today marks the 50th anniversary of his priestly ordination!

It has been interesting to read the many articles about the appointment by Pope Francis of Filipino Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle to head the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples, the almost 400-year old dicastery originally known as Propaganda Fide (Spreading the Faith). A number of sites have suggested that Francis, in naming a charismatic personality, is also indicating one possible successor of his to the papacy.

That interested me and I looked at the history of this Congregation and found that of Tagle’s 40 predecessors as cardinal prefects of Propanganda Fide, only one, Cardinal Mauro Capellari had been elected as Pope, becoming Pope Gregory XVI. Born Bartolomeo Alberto Cappellari in September 1765, he had adopted the name Mauro upon entering the religious order of the Camaldolese. He was prefect of the Congregation from 1826 to 1831 when he was elected Pope. He was also ruler of the Papal States until his death in 1846.

Just sayin….it doesn’t mean it can’t happen a second time.

VATICAN INSIDER: JANET MORANA AND CATHOLIC-INSPIRED NGOS

My guest this week in the interview segment of Vatican Insider is well-known to many of you – Janet Morana – executive director of Priests for Life and also one of the main hosts of EWTN’s “The Catholic View.” Janet was in Rome for a forum of and by Catholic-inspired NGOs – Non-governmental organizations. Priests for Life is a member of that forum and Janet tells an exciting story about the meeting – so stay tuned for that!

I interviewed Janet on Saturday, December 7 in my office at 5 pm. After that conversation, we went to 6 pm Mass at St. Patrick’s and then to my parish’s annual gala dinner dance for charity. Of necessity, we were both dressed for the gala, not for a radio interview and I announce this at the end of our talk. Here is a photo to prove it!


IN THE UNITED STATES, you can listen to Vatican Insider (VI) on a Catholic radio station near you (stations listed at http://www.ewtn.com) or on channel 130 Sirius-XM satellite radio, or on http://www.ewtn.com. OUTSIDE THE U.S., you can listen to EWTN radio on our website home page by clicking on the right side where you see “LISTEN TO EWTN.” VI airs at 5am and 9pm ET on Saturdays and 6am ET on Sundays. On the GB-IE feed (which is on SKY in the UK and Ireland), VI airs at 5:30am, 12 noon and 10pm CET on Sundays. Both of these feeds are also available on the EWTN app and on http://www.ewtnradio.net ALWAYS CHECK YOUR OWN TIME ZONE! For VI archives: http://www.ewtn.com/multimedia/audio-library/index.asp (write Vatican Insider where it says Search Shows and Episodes)

POPE URGES SCRUPULOSITY, ACCURACY IN INVESTIGATING SAINTHOOD

Vaticannews yesterday reported on the Pope’s address to members of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the Vatican Dicastery. It noted that, “the tasks of what are today called the Congregation for the Causes of Saints and the Congregation for Divine Worship, had been carried out earlier by the Sacred Congregation of Rites, instituted over 4 centuries ago in 1588. Pope Saint Paul VI in 1969, Pope Francis said, split the Congregation into two dicasteries that have “two large areas that are clearly distinct.”

Thus, a 50th anniversary for the Congregation for Causes of Saints, a congregation that inaugurated a new website – http://www.causesanti,va – that very same day.

Francis said that the many beatifications and canonizations that have been celebrated in recent decades mean that saints are models and guides of Christian life, but they are not unreachable human beings. In fact, he said, “they are people who have experienced the daily toil of existence with its successes and failures, finding in the Lord the strength to always get up and continue the journey.”

In what appeared to be remarks aimed at the recent postponement by Vatican orders of the scheduled December 21 beatification of Venerable Fulton Sheen in the Illinois diocese of Peoria, the Holy Father exhorted the Congregation in its task of carrying out with scrupulosity and accuracy its investigative research into the martyrdom, heroic virtues, the offering of life and miracles of men and women candidates, in order clear the field of any ambiguity or doubt and achieve full certainty in the proclamation of their holiness.

POPE FRANCIS: 50 YEARS OF PRIESTHOOD SERVING GOD AND HIS PEOPLE -POPE NAMES BISHOPS FOR LOCAL CHURCHES THROUGHOUT THE WORLD

Two interesting things about today’s Vaticannews posts:

– The daily press office bulletin notes that, among those the Pope received today in audience were U.S. bishops from Illinois, Wisconsin and Indiana (Region VII), on their ad limina visit. Notably missing was the name of Bishop Jenky of Peoria, the diocese that was to have hosted the beatification of Venerable Fulton Sheen on December 21.

– As you will see below, the Vatican today published a list of names of resignations Pope Francis has accepted and appointments he has made. We did this in our daily bulletins for over 21 years when I worked at the Vatican Information Service. VIS was shut down several years ago as part of the Pope’s reorganization of Vatican communications. I’d love to have a euro for every time I have been asked when VIS will come back! I’d love to have collected a euro during those 21 years when bishops and nuncios in particular told us VIS was the best thing the Vatican had ever done in communications! AND I heard from those same folks (and others, over the years) that the first thing they did was scroll down the page to the Nominations section (it was always at the bottom of our news reports)!

Pope Francis, as I write, is celebrating Mass in St. Peter’s Basilica for the liturgical feast day of the Blessed Virgin Mary of Guadalupe. He has done this for several years now. Journalists have been informed that he will deliver an off-the-cuff homily as there is no prepared written text. I am not sure but believe the US bishops from Region VII will concelebrate at this Mass.

Unless you are fluent in Italian, you will not be able to enjoy the new website of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints (www.causesanti.va), available now only in Italian. A congregation communique says the site offers the bios of 700 saints, has a search engine, presents the saint of the day, and has interactive information on the canonical procedures leading up to beatification and canonization.

POPE FRANCIS: 50 YEARS OF PRIESTHOOD SERVING GOD AND HIS PEOPLE

Tomorrow, December 13th marks the 50th anniversary of Pope Francis’ ordination to the priesthood. Vatican News celebrates this milestone recalling some of Pope’s reflections regarding priests and the priesthood.
By Sergio Centofanti

On December 13, 1969, just four days before his 33rd birthday, Jorge Mario Bergoglio was ordained a priest. His vocation dates back to September 21, 1953, the Feast of St. Matthew, the tax collector converted by Jesus: it was during a confession that day, that the future Pope had a profound experience of God’s mercy. The Pope was born in December 17, 1936

To read some highlights and explore a photo gallery, click here:
https://www.vaticannews.va/en/pope/news/2019-12/pope-francis-50-years-of-priesthood-serving-god-and-his-people.html

POPE NAMES BISHOPS FOR LOCAL CHURCHES THROUGHOUT THE WORLD

Pope Francis has named new Bishops for dioceses in South Sudan, the Republic of Congo, Nigeria, Ecuador, Colombia, Peru, the United States, and Poland.

By Vatican News

On Thursday, the Holy See announced the following resignations and appointments for various episcopal sees around the world.

The Holy Father, Pope Francis, has:
– accepted the resignation of Archbishop Paulino Lukudu Loro, M.C.C.J., from the pastoral care of the Archdiocese of Juba, South Sudan; and at the same time, named Bishop Stephen Ameyu Martin Mulla, until now Bishop of Torit, as Archbishop of the same Metropolitan See;
– accepted the resignation of Bishop Jean Gardin, C.S.Sp., from the pastoral care of the Diocese of Impfondo, Republic of Congo; and at the same time, named Father Daniel Nzika, of the clergy of Ouessa, and until now Vicar General, as Bishop of the same Diocese;
– named Father Julius Yakubu Kundi, of the clergy of Zaria, and until now Pastor of Saint John in Muchia, as Bishop of the Diocese of Kafanchan, Nigeria;
– named Bishop Sedundo René Coba Galarza, until now Military Ordinary of Ecuador, as Bishop of Ibarra, Ecuador;
– accepted the resignation of Bishop Carlos Germán Mesa Ruiz from the pastoral care of the Diocese of Socorro y San Gil, Colombia; and named Father Luis Augusto Campos Flórez, of the clergy of the Archdiocese of Bogotá, Colombia, and until now Episcopal Vicar of the Archdiocesan Zone of the Holy Spirit, as Bishop of the same Diocese;
– named Father Giorgio Barbetta, of the clergy of Gubbio, Italy, as titular Bishop of Isola and Auxiliary of the Diocese of Huari, Peru, where he has been serving as a fidei donum priest, and Rector of the Señor de Pomallucay Seminary;
– accepted the resignation of Bishop Paul Joseph Swain from the pastoral care of the Diocese of Sioux Falls, United States; and named Father Donald Edward DeGrood, of the clergy of the Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis, until now Pastor of St John the Baptist Parish in Savage, Minnesota, as Bishop of the same Diocese;
– named Father Adrian Jósef Galbas, S.A.C., until now Provincial of the Society of the Catholic Apostolate of the Province of Poznań, as Auxiliary of the Diocese of Ełk, Poland, assigning him the titular see of Naisso

VATICAN INSIDER AND THE CAUSE OF VENERABLE FULTON SHEEN

VATICAN INSIDER AND THE CAUSE OF VENERABLE FULTON SHEEN

Welcome to “Vatican Insider” on this final weekend of July! Where has this month gone!
As you know, I start the program with a summary of the news highlights of the past week at the Vatican, usually followed by a Q&A when time allows.
This week, I urge you to stay tuned after the news segment of Vatican Insider for Part II of my conversation with Msgr. Richard Soseman of the diocese of Peoria in Illinois. He is the vice postulator for the cause for canonization of Venerable Servant of God Archbishop Fulton Sheen. You won’t want to miss this!

Photos taken during recent Rome visit:

At one point we talk about the miracles required for canonization: one is required for beatification and a second one for canonization but that second miracle must occur after the announcement of the future beatification of a person.

Msgr. Soseman noted that, at a July 5 audience with Cardinal Angelo Becciu, prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, Pope Francis announced that a miracle attributed to the intercession of Archbishop Sheen could be promulgated, thus moving him a step closer to beatification.

Thus, said the vice postulator for the Sheen cause for canonization, a second miracle for the canonization of Abp. Sheen must occur after that July 5 date.

He also told me – thus the listeners of Vatican Insider – that if anyone knows of an alleged miracle due to the intercession of Abp, Sheen, they should contact him by writing to: Msgr. Richard Soseman, 1109 Pulaski Street, Peru, Illinois 61354.

By the way, in many cases, including Pope John Paul II and Abp. Sheen, miracles have been reported to have occurred during the person’s lifetime. However, even though well documented and meeting all criteria for a miracle, they may not be used toward the cause of canonization for a person.

Here is a link to Part I of our conversation that aired last weekend: https://podcasts.apple.com/uz/podcast/vatican-insider-07-20-2019-vatican-news-sheen-canonization/id260728043?i=1000444889326

And here’s a link to the story about the miracle that led to Sheen’s beatification: https://churchpop.com/2019/07/06/that-miracle-thats-getting-ven-archbishop-fulton-j-sheen-beatified/

One last point: If you know of someone who is very ill – man, woman or child – and in need of prayers, why not start praying to Abp. Sheen today to intercede for that person? And why not ask that person’s family member and friends to also pray to Venerable Sheen!

IN THE UNITED STATES, you can listen to Vatican Insider (VI) on a Catholic radio station near you (stations listed at http://www.ewtn.com) or on channel 130 Sirius-XM satellite radio, or on http://www.ewtn.com. OUTSIDE THE U.S., you can listen to EWTN radio on our website home page by clicking on the right side where you see “LISTEN TO EWTN.” VI airs at 5am and 9pm ET on Saturdays and 6am ET on Sundays. On the GB-IE feed (which is on SKY in the UK and Ireland), VI airs at 5:30am, 12 noon and 10pm CET on Sundays. Both of these feeds are also available on the EWTN app and on http://www.ewtnradio.net ALWAYS CHECK YOUR OWN TIME ZONE! For VI archives: http://www.ewtn.com/multimedia/audio-library/index.asp (write Vatican Insider where it says Search Shows and Episodes)

AMERICAN CHRISTIAN BROTHER A STEP CLOSER TO SAINTHOO

AMERICAN CHRISTIAN BROTHER A STEP CLOSER TO SAINTHOOD
Pope Francis on Thursday, in a meeting Wednesday with Cardinal Angelo Becciu, the new prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints authorized the promulgation of 16 decrees concerning 24 persons.

He also authorized the Congregation to promulgate a special decree on the heroic virtues and the confirmation of the cult from time immemorial of the Servant of God Michael Giedrojć, regarding him as Blessed. This act of the Pope declaring a person Blessed without the need for a beatification ceremony is called “equipollent”! beatification, or “equivalent” beatification. Michael Giedrojć, a professed layman of the Order of St. Augustine, was born in Giedrojce (Lithuania) around the year 1420 and died in Krakow (Poland) on May 4, 1485.

The Pope also authorized 15 other decrees regarding miracles, martyrdom and heroic virtues of 23 people, bringing them a step closer to sainthood.

One of those was for the martyrdom of American Servant of God James Alfred Miller, a professed Brother of the Institute of the Brothers of the Christian Schools. He was born in Stevens Point (USA) on September 21, 1944, and was killed in hatred of the faith in Huehuetenango (Guatemala) on February 13, 1982.

Novitiate photo –

From the Christian Brothers website:

Brother James Miller Biography

Brother James (Santiago) Miller, FSC, was born in Stevens Point, Wisconsin, in September 1944. He first met the Brothers when he attended Pacelli High School there, and he entered the juniorate in Glencoe, Missouri, in September 1959. He began his year of novitiate in June 1962, and following his formation years he started teaching. After professing his perpetual vows in 1969, he was sent to Bluefields, Nicaragua until 1974 when he was sent to Puerto Cabezas, Nicaragua. In July 1979 his superiors directed him to leave the country because the Sandinista revolution was in progress, and they feared he might be at risk.

In January 1981 he was allowed to return to Central America, this time to Guatemala. He taught at the secondary school in Huehuetenango and worked at the Indian Center where young indigenous Mayans from rural areas studied and trained in agriculture. The relations between the Brothers at the Indian Center and the Guatemalan military were often strained. To meet its quota of army conscripts, the government often rounded up Indian boys from the streets. Although students were exempt from military service, the boys from the Center were often conscripted into the army. When that happened, a Brother would present proof to the authorities that the boy in questions was a student. The military would then reluctantly release him.

Two days before Brother James was killed, a Mayan pupil was forced into the army. A Brother tried to obtain his release from the authorities, but his petition was refused. By his adamant demands the Brother infuriated these authorities. In the afternoon of February 13, 1982, while he was repairing a wall at the Indian Center where his boarders lived, three hooded men shot Brother James point blank. He died instantly. Some saw his death as a warning to the Brothers to cease interfering in government affairs. Attempts to identify his assassins were unsuccessful.

Brother James’ cause of martyrdom was undertaken by the Diocese of Huehuetenango in 2009 and received the Decree of Validity in Rome in July 2010 when he was designated a “Servant of God” and a martyr for the faith. The process leading to his beatification continues with the Congregation of the Causes of Saints in Rome.

For further info, photos, etc., visit: http://www.cbmidwest.org/WP1/the-beatification-of-brother-james-miller-fsc/

AMERICAN CHRISTIAN BROTHER A STEP CLOSER TO SAINTHOOD

Pope Francis on Thursday, in a meeting Wednesday with Cardinal Angelo Becciu, the new prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints authorized the promulgation of 16 decrees concerning 24 persons.

He also authorized the Congregation to promulgate a special decree on the heroic virtues and the confirmation of the cult from time immemorial of the Servant of God Michael Giedrojć, regarding him as Blessed. This act of the Pope declaring a person Blessed without the need for a beatification ceremony is called “equipollent”! beatification, or “equivalent” beatification. Michael Giedrojć, a professed layman of the Order of St. Augustine, was born in Giedrojce (Lithuania) around the year 1420 and died in Krakow (Poland) on May 4, 1485.

The Pope also authorized 15 other decrees regarding miracles, martyrdom and heroic virtues of 23 people, bringing them a step closer to sainthood.

One of those was for the martyrdom of American Servant of God James Alfred Miller, a professed Brother of the Institute of the Brothers of the Christian Schools. He was born in Stevens Point (USA) on September 21, 1944, and was killed in hatred of the faith in Huehuetenango (Guatemala) on February 13, 1982.

Novitiate photo –

From the Christian Brothers website:

Brother James Miller Biography

Brother James (Santiago) Miller, FSC, was born in Stevens Point, Wisconsin, in September 1944. He first met the Brothers when he attended Pacelli High School there, and he entered the juniorate in Glencoe, Missouri, in September 1959. He began his year of novitiate in June 1962, and following his formation years he started teaching. After professing his perpetual vows in 1969, he was sent to Bluefields, Nicaragua until 1974 when he was sent to Puerto Cabezas, Nicaragua. In July 1979 his superiors directed him to leave the country because the Sandinista revolution was in progress, and they feared he might be at risk.

In January 1981 he was allowed to return to Central America, this time to Guatemala. He taught at the secondary school in Huehuetenango and worked at the Indian Center where young indigenous Mayans from rural areas studied and trained in agriculture. The relations between the Brothers at the Indian Center and the Guatemalan military were often strained. To meet its quota of army conscripts, the government often rounded up Indian boys from the streets. Although students were exempt from military service, the boys from the Center were often conscripted into the army. When that happened, a Brother would present proof to the authorities that the boy in questions was a student. The military would then reluctantly release him.

Two days before Brother James was killed, a Mayan pupil was forced into the army. A Brother tried to obtain his release from the authorities, but his petition was refused. By his adamant demands the Brother infuriated these authorities. In the afternoon of February 13, 1982, while he was repairing a wall at the Indian Center where his boarders lived, three hooded men shot Brother James point blank. He died instantly. Some saw his death as a warning to the Brothers to cease interfering in government affairs. Attempts to identify his assassins were unsuccessful.

Brother James’ cause of martyrdom was undertaken by the Diocese of Huehuetenango in 2009 and received the Decree of Validity in Rome in July 2010 when he was designated a “Servant of God” and a martyr for the faith. The process leading to his beatification continues with the Congregation of the Causes of Saints in Rome.

For further info, photos, etc., visit: http://www.cbmidwest.org/WP1/the-beatification-of-brother-james-miller-fsc/

AMERICAN CHRISTIAN BROTHER A STEP CLOSER TO SAINTHOOD

AMERICAN CHRISTIAN BROTHER A STEP CLOSER TO SAINTHOOD

Pope Francis on Thursday, in a meeting Wednesday with Cardinal Angelo Becciu, the new prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints authorized the promulgation of 16 decrees concerning 24 persons.

He also authorized the Congregation to promulgate a special decree on the heroic virtues and the confirmation of the cult from time immemorial of the Servant of God Michael Giedrojć, regarding him as Blessed. This act of the Pope declaring a person Blessed without the need for a beatification ceremony is called “equipollent”! beatification, or “equivalent” beatification. Michael Giedrojć, a professed layman of the Order of St. Augustine, was born in Giedrojce (Lithuania) around the year 1420 and died in Krakow (Poland) on May 4, 1485.

The Pope also authorized 15 other decrees regarding miracles, martyrdom and heroic virtues of 23 people, bringing them a step closer to sainthood.

One of those was for the martyrdom of American Servant of God James Alfred Miller, a professed Brother of the Institute of the Brothers of the Christian Schools. He was born in Stevens Point (USA) on September 21, 1944, and was killed in hatred of the faith in Huehuetenango (Guatemala) on February 13, 1982.

Novitiate photo –

From the Christian Brothers website:

Brother James Miller Biography

Brother James (Santiago) Miller, FSC, was born in Stevens Point, Wisconsin, in September 1944. He first met the Brothers when he attended Pacelli High School there, and he entered the juniorate in Glencoe, Missouri, in September 1959. He began his year of novitiate in June 1962, and following his formation years he started teaching. After professing his perpetual vows in 1969, he was sent to Bluefields, Nicaragua until 1974 when he was sent to Puerto Cabezas, Nicaragua. In July 1979 his superiors directed him to leave the country because the Sandinista revolution was in progress, and they feared he might be at risk.

In January 1981 he was allowed to return to Central America, this time to Guatemala. He taught at the secondary school in Huehuetenango and worked at the Indian Center where young indigenous Mayans from rural areas studied and trained in agriculture. The relations between the Brothers at the Indian Center and the Guatemalan military were often strained. To meet its quota of army conscripts, the government often rounded up Indian boys from the streets. Although students were exempt from military service, the boys from the Center were often conscripted into the army. When that happened, a Brother would present proof to the authorities that the boy in questions was a student. The military would then reluctantly release him.

Two days before Brother James was killed, a Mayan pupil was forced into the army. A Brother tried to obtain his release from the authorities, but his petition was refused. By his adamant demands the Brother infuriated these authorities. In the afternoon of February 13, 1982, while he was repairing a wall at the Indian Center where his boarders lived, three hooded men shot Brother James point blank. He died instantly. Some saw his death as a warning to the Brothers to cease interfering in government affairs. Attempts to identify his assassins were unsuccessful.

Brother James’ cause of martyrdom was undertaken by the Diocese of Huehuetenango in 2009 and received the Decree of Validity in Rome in July 2010 when he was designated a “Servant of God” and a martyr for the faith. The process leading to his beatification continues with the Congregation of the Causes of Saints in Rome.

For further info, photos, etc., visit: http://www.cbmidwest.org/WP1/the-beatification-of-brother-james-miller-fsc/

NEVER A DULL DAY IN THE LIFE OF A CORRESPONDENT…. – POPE APPROVES DECREES OF MIRACLES, MARTYRDOM, AND HEROIC VIRTUES – PAPAL TELEGRAM FOR QUAKE IN PAPUA NEW GUINEA – GENERAL AUDIENCE: THE EUCHARISTIC PRAYER, SPECIAL OLYMPICS AND “24 HOURS FOR THE LORD”

NEVER A DULL DAY IN THE LIFE OF A CORRESPONDENT….

What an interesting workday this has been! I did the commentary this morning for EWTN’s television coverage of the weekly papal general audience in the Paul VI Hall, and enjoyed being part of, so to speak, all the pre-catechesis moments when the Holy Father arrives, walks down the central aisle of the hall, meets the faithful, kisses babies, receives gifts from well-wishers including lovely drawings by children and a half dozen red roses from one group or family, and so on. There are also some lovely moments after the catechesis as well (today there large numbers of babies and toddlers!) but, unfortunately these less formal moments are generally not seen on TV. I followed them on the closed circuit TV in the studio and they were delightful.

Pilgrims gathered in both the Paul VI Hall and St. Peter’s Basilica because the weather has been so bad – rain non-stop for at least a week! – that it was deemed prudent to have the audience inside. There was indeed sun for a few hours but the blue sky quickly turned to gray and we’ve had rain all afternoon.

The commentary is done from a small radio studio where there is a flat screen TV and all the various electronics that link us to EWTN in Birmingham which, in turn, is linked to Vatican Television in Rome! There’s also a computer linked to a printer but I used my iPad and translated the papal remarks from the official text that arrived via email. Until the papal speech or homily arrives, the heart beats a bit faster because simultaneously translating what the Pope says, rather than having the official text, is not an easy chore.

There’s always a lot more than meets the eye when you turn on a radio or television to listen to or watch a program. If things go smoothly and seem well choreographed, it’s because a team of talented people – like the EWTN engineers and technical people – put their skills together to create a seamless tapestry. Kudos to the behind-the-scenes people!

As today is Wednesday I also have my usual weekly appointment with Teresa Tomeo on Catholic Connection that airs on Ave Maria and EWTN radio at 9:40 am ET (3:40 pm in Rome).

Today we spoke about the sudden and tragic death in Rome of the archbishop of Ho Chin Minh Ville (Saigon), Vietnam. The Vietnamese bishops have been in Rome this week on the mandatory “ad limina” (to the threshold) visit all bishops must pay to Rome – usually every five years. During these visits, they meet with the Pope and visit various offices of the Roman Curia.

Archbishop Paul Bùi Văn Đọc had a stroke yesterday morning while concelebrating Mass in the Basilica of Saint Paul outside the walls. He had met Pope Francis the day before with the other Vietnamese bishops.

Originally from Da Lat, he was consecrated bishop of My Tho by John Paul II. Pope Francis appointed him coadjutor archbishop of Ho Chi Minh in 2013. He served as the archbishop of Ho Chi Minh City from 2014 to 2018 and was president of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Vietnam from 2013 to 2016. Born in November 1944, he was 73.

Teresa and I also spoke about the upcoming canonizations of Blessed Pope Paul VI and Archbishop Oscar Romero of San Salvador and three others (see story below). The only date that has been announced is the canonization Mass for Paul VI – that will be in October at the end of the Synod of Bishops. St. John XXIII was the first Pope I ever saw and Blessed Paul Vi was the first Pope I ever spoke to (I do not have a digital copy of the photos I took that day at Castelgandolfo – will have to remedy that).

Teresa spoke of the long and complex process for the creation – the recognition, really! – of Blesseds and Saints. I told her I was now a formal part of that process because several months ago I became an official member of the Brother Joseph Dutton Guild in the diocese of Honolulu. We are in the very initial, exploratory stages of his cause: these are the stages where you discover what the Vatican requires for a process to begin. What information do they need? How do we prove heroic virtues? What has the person said or written? All their works – their entire life – have to be studied. How is a postulator for the cause chosen? What are their attributes? This is just the nutshell version of the work laid out ahead of the Guild!

And the nutshell version of ‘Who is Joseph Dutton?” He worked alongside St. Damien and St. Marianne of Molokai for 44 years, spending the final 44 years of his long life in service to these two saints and to the patients of leprosy whom they served so lovingly and faithfully on the peninsular of Kalaupapa – Damien for 16 years and Mother Marianne for 30.

Longtime readers of this column know of my passion for Hawaii, for these saints and for this future third saint of Molokai. I first went to Hawaii and to Kalaupapa in 2008. I was a passionate newcomer to the story of Fr. Damien who was canonized in Rome in October 2009. During the 2008 visit I also learned of Mother Marianne – and just a bit about Brother Joseph – and I followed their stories right through my 2012 return visit to Hawaii and Marianne’s canonization in 2012.

I have been back to Hawaii every year since, in fact, twice last year as I was there in September on vacation (and participated in my first meeting with the Guild!) and returned to give a speech at the Hawaii Convention Center for the First Saints Damien and Marianne Conference.

At some point in the future I will bring you Brother Joseph Dutton’s story. By the way, he was not a religious brother: It was Fr. Damien who told him one day, “You are like a brother to everyone here, and that is what I will call you.”
And now, some news from the Vatican:

POPE APPROVES DECREES OF MIRACLES, MARTYRDOM, AND HEROIC VIRTUES

The Congregation for the Causes of Saints published the following decrees that Pope Francis authorized in a meeting with Cardinal Angel Amato, prefect of the congregation.

The five Blesseds named below will become Saints in future canonizations. Blessed Paul VI’s canonization has been announced for the end of the October Synod of Bishops in Rome. October is a traditional month for canonizations, and such ceremonies often also take place in the spring. (vaticannews.va photo)

– a miracle attributed to the intercession of Blessed Paul VI (Giovanni Battista Montini), Supreme Pontiff; born in Concesio (Italy) on 26 September 1897 and died inCastel Gandolfo (Italy) on 6 August 1978;

— a miracle attributed to the intercession of Blessed Óscar Arnulfo Romero y Galdámez, Archbishop of San Salvador (El Salvador), Martyr; born in Ciudad Barrios (El Salvador) on 15 August 1917 and murdered in San Salvador (El Salvador) on 24 March 1980;

— a miracle attributed to the intercession of Blessed Francesco Spinelli, Diocesan priest, Founder of the Institute of the Sister Adorers of the Blessed Sacrament; born in Milan (Italy) on 14 April 1853 and died at Rivolta d’Adda (Italy) on 6 February 1913;

— a miracle attributed to the intercession of Blessed Vincenzo Romani, Diocesan priest; born at Torre del Greco (Italy) on 3 June 1751 and died there on 20 December 1831;

– a miracle attributed to the intercession of Blessed Maria Catherine Kasper, Foundress of the Institute of the Poor Handmaids of Jesus Christ; born on 26 May 1820 in Dernbach (Germany) and died there on 2 February 1898;

Other decrees regarded miracles, heroic virtues and martyrdom for 8 Servants of God: http://www.vaticannews.va/en/church/news/2018-03/pope-francis-paul-vi-saints-miracle-martyrdom-heroic-virtues.html

PAPAL TELEGRAM FOR QUAKE IN PAPUA NEW GUINEA

Pope Francis sent a telegram expressing his condolences to the victims of the earthquake in Papua New Guinea through Cardinal Pietro Parolin, Secretary of State.

It was with great sadness that His Holiness Pope Francis learned of the tragic loss of life following the recent earthquake in Papua New Guinea. Commending the souls of the deceased to the mercy of Almighty God, he sends his heartfelt condolences to their families, and he assures all those affected by this disaster of his closeness in prayer. Upon all those who mourn at this difficult time, and upon the emergency personnel involved in the important relief efforts, Pope Francis willingly invokes the divine blessings of strength and consolation. Cardinal Pietro Parolin

UNICEF reports that in Papua New Guinea approximately 270,000 persons need humanitarian assistance in the wake of last week’s earthquake. This number includes more than 130 thousand children.

Since the 7.5 magnitude quake, there have been about 100 aftershocks as well as another 6.0 magnitude earthquake on Sunday. An estimated 65 percent of Papua New Guinea’s health facilities remain closed and schools may remain closed for the duration of the school year due to the damage sustained. This was a week after a larger quake flattened villages and killed at least 55 people.

GENERAL AUDIENCE: THE EUCHARISTIC PRAYER, SPECIAL OLYMPICS AND “24 HOURS FOR THE LORD”

Pope Francis during his general audience on Wednesday continued his catechesis on the Mass, focusing his attention on the Eucharistic Prayer. Speaking off the cuff, he said, “one does not pay to go to Mass,” as “the Mass is the sacrifice of Christ which is free. If you want you can make an offering, but you do not pay.”

Pope Francis also said there were three approaches that should never be lacking in disciples of Jesus: the first is, learn how to give thanks, the second, to make our life a gift of love, and third, to build concrete communion in the Church and with everyone.

Speaking to the pilgrims in the Paul VI hall the Pontiff spoke in particular about the Eucharistic Prayer noting that “this central prayer of the Mass educates us, little by little, to make a “Eucharist” of our whole life, that is an action of grace ”

The Pope went on to say that, “in offering the bread and wine which become the body and blood of Christ, we unite ourselves to his sacrifice of reconciliation on the cross.”

As the memorial of the mystery of the Lord’s death and resurrection, the Pope added, “the Eucharistic prayer asks that we may be drawn, in the Holy Spirit, into communion with one another in the mystical Body of Christ, and united to the Son in his eternal sacrifice of praise and intercession before the Father.”

In conclusion, Pope Francis prayed that at every Mass, the faithful would “enter more fully into this “mystery of faith”, which brings the forgiveness of sin, builds up the Church in unity and prays for the reconciliation and peace of our entire human family.”

At the end of his Wednesday general audience, Pope Francis said sport can overcome disabilities and build bridges between peoples in his greetings to the International Paralympic Committee and all the athletes taking part in the winter games in the South Korean city of PyeongChang.

Noting that the city recently hosted the Olympic games, the Pope said that major sporting event showed how “sport can build bridges between countries in conflict, giving a valid contribution and perspectives for peace among peoples”.

He said the Paralympic Games are a further sign of the way in which sport can help overcome disabilities. He described the athletes are “an example for everyone of courage, tenacity and perseverance”, refusing to let themselves be held back by their limitations. Sport, the Pope said, is a school of inclusion, of inspiration for our personal lives and of commitment to transform our societies.

Pope Francis concluded with a greeting to the Paralympic Committee, to all the competing athletes and to all the Korean people. He assured them of his prayers that this event may encourage days of peace and joy for everyone. The Paralympic games are due to take place in PyeongChang from March 9th to 18th.

The Holy Father also noted that this Friday, March 9, in St Peter’s Basilica he will celebrate a penitential Lenten liturgy known as ‘24 hours for the Lord’. He said he hoped that churches would remain open in order to welcome all those wishing to prepare for Easter by celebrating the sacrament of Reconciliation and finding God’s mercy in this way.
(Vatiannews.va)