Wednesday, October 14, 2009
Sainthood becomes popularity contest
(WQ) The Catholic process of vetting saints has utterly collapsed. The ancient process has gone from one of advocacy and debate to the Church simply "selecting" them based on geopolitical motives instead of sanctity. For example, if more converts are wanted in a region, or if the Church wants to solidify power, a local is elevated to the exalted status of saint to win the approval of locals.
The Vatican's Office of the Devil's Advocate, which used to put claims of sanctity to the test, has been disbanded. Candidates may be very good (but not saints), very popular, very corrupt, and/or very powerful and still receive the honorary title. Unfortunately, this leaves the world bereft of any reliable way of identifying authentic saints in Christiandom.
VATICAN CITY – A 19th-century priest whose courageous work with leprosy patients in Hawaii has been likened to the efforts of those battling the stigma of AIDS was elevated to sainthood Sunday by Pope Benedict XVI, along with four other Catholics he hailed as heroes of holiness. More>>