Today, May 1, 2011 marks the date when one of the most revered popes of the Roman Catholic Church, John Paul II will be beatified and canonised – officially making him a “Blessed” inspiration for the members of the faith.
John Paul II, born Karol Józef Wojtyła lived from May 18, 1920 until April 2, 2005. A little more than a month after his passing, Pope Benedict XVI, on May 9, immediately started the beatification process for him. An “exceptional circumstance” for the it normally took five years after the death can the beatification process be initiated.
So is John Paul II a saint now? Well, officially, no or as believers say, not yet. To be canonized as a saint, one must have done at least two miracles. And investigations of these miracles typically take centuries.
However, many members of the church, specially those whose lives John Paul II has touched, already consider him a saint. That the canonization is but a formality that they are sure to happen in the future.
In behalf of our news staff, we celebrate with all the more than 1 billion Roman Catholics in the world for the beatification of John Paul II.