Today is Divine Mercy Sunday in the Catholic Church. A day instituted by now Saint Pope John Paul II back in 2000 after he canonized the first saint of the new millennium*, St. Faustina of Poland. Today, Pope John Paul II and Pope John XXIII were canonized.
Over the last few days, GorT has been part of discussions concerning these canonizations. There are two main issues raised in these discussions: (1) the waiving of the two miracles for Pope John XXIII and (2) the child abuse scandal with regards to Pope John Paul II’s papacy. Let me take each in turn.
First, GorT is of the opinion that the Church has rules and waiving rules only goes towards weakening or lessening the rules or the benefactor of the waiving. I’m sure both of these men were very holy and much closer to God than GorT is. I don’t know much about Pope John XXIII aside from the fact that he called for the Second Vatican Council and he authored Pacem in Terris. There is no schedule or need for the Church to add new saints that justifies waiving a rule such as this.
Second, the child abuse scandal is not something that should prevent Pope John Paul II from being canonized. The Church has an administrative structure in place that failed miserably in dealing with this issue. It could have been addressed at a much lower level. Yes, maybe it would have been good for Pope John Paul II to speak out on the matter but to what end? Would that have changed the past and what happened? Would his words have changed the steps taken? Maybe. But then again, the day to day care and administration of the Church falls beneath the Pope.
On this Divine Mercy Sunday, we should ask for God’s mercy on our souls and pray that Saint John XXIII and Saint John Paul II intercede on our behalf in heaven.
* GorT will, again, point out that the year 2000 is not in the “new millennium” but is the last year of the “old millenium” as we did not start counting years from 0 – therefore, the first 1,000 anno domini includes the year 2000.