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    Canonization: The Significance of Sainthood | Quadriga - Talk

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    DW (English)

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    Hundreds of thousands of Catholic faithful are expected to travel to Rome to witness the canonization of two former popes on Sunday. The Catholic Church was shaped in large part by the pontiffs John XXIII and John Paul II. But critics have also been expressing doubts over the canonizations.

    At the beginning of the 1960s Pope John XXIII called the Second Vatican Council together to reform the church. Pope John Paul II is greatly admired by many Catholics thanks to his charisma and charm. In his home country of Poland and in Eastern Europe he is remembered for his firm opposition against communism. But his critics point to his authoritarian style and his measures to reduce the influence of social reformers within the church.

    Prerequisites for canonization are two miracles attributed to the person to be declared a saint or that person's death as a Christian martyr. After John Paul's death two people claimed to have been miraculously healed of disease after praying to him. Just one miracle has been credited to Pope John but the present Pope Francis has allowed his canonization to proceed. John Paul died in 2005, and for many Catholics, his canonization is happening too quickly.
    Thanks to media attention the canonization ceremony in Rome will be seen by millions of people around the world. But is the ceremony a mere spectacle with little meaning or does it mark an important historic event for the Catholic Church?
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