Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Dziwisz Hopes for August Canonization of John Paul

Polish archbishop hopes for August sainthood for Pope John Paul II


  1. JMJ

    "The world has already canonised John Paul II, now we are only waiting for final confirmation of this fact," Archbishop Stanislaw Dziwisz told PAP.

    Argument no. 1 why he should not be canomnized. "If the world hated Me, know that it will hate you, also, for no servant is greater that his Master." Many of the same people who loved him did not care about his teaching. Our dear departed Holy Father gained their hearts, but not their souls.

    Is the Church better off than it was 26 years ago? I don't recall dioceses going bankrupt in the 1970s. The human element of the Church is a mess (although Her Divinity still resides in Her), and where exactly does the buck stop for that? Nobody refuses to blame the one at the helm when things go awry, it seems, except Catholics. The Church never claimed that papal infallibility extends to everything the Vicar of Christ says and does.

  2. John Paul the Great will be canonized not because of the will of the people but because of the will of God. The people are simply recognizing the will of God.

    With regard to whether the Holy Father captured souls, I think that is beside the point. How can anyone possibly know how many souls that were affected by John Paul? For every dissenter one could mention, I would conservatively estimate that there is at least one person who entered the Church who will cite the influence of the Holy Father.

    With regard to his canonization, the question is whether he was faithful to God. As the universal pastor of the Church did he speak the Truth and live a life of holiness. Whether people followed his lead or not, is somewhat beside the point. There are numerous prophets in Scripture who were faithful to God's call to speak the Truth, but the people did not listen. For example, St. John the Baptist should not be a saint because a case could be made that he actually failed to prepare the way for the Messiah. Some people heeded his call to repentance, others did not. He got a little too involved in politics with the result that he was arrested and killed by Herod. Maybe he should have left well enough alone regarding Herod and simply stuck to the preaching to the people. Ultimately, however, the people failed to recognize Jesus as the Messiah. The blame for this could be laid at the feet of St. John the Baptist.

    I will not enumerate them here, but there are numerous items that could be listed to indicate the great contributions that John Paul the Great made to the Church. If the people of the Church are making a hash of things, it certainly is not because he failed to demonstrate and speak about how to live the Christian life.

    Finally, with regard to the scandals which are causing dioceses to declare bankruptcy there are a number of problems for attributing this to John Paul. First, many incidents took place before he was pope or they occurred under bishops whom he had not appointed. The fact that many of these problems came to light under his pontificate does not make him culpable.

    Second, although he is the pope he is not a dictator. He proposed the Truth, and he made the Truth attractive in his presentation of it. People are more open to God if they hear about Him from someone who is truly charitable and actually has a real relationship with God. However, he cannot force people, even inside of the Church, to live as faithful Catholics.

    It is so easy to blame the hierarchy of the Church for the problems in the Church. Each of us, however, has to ask ourselves what God wants us to be doing for Him. If I am not living my vocation, I am weakening the mission of the Church. If I fail to be charitable, I am opening up the door a little more for sin to enter into the Church. In other words, each of us has to take seriously the call to holiness because at my particular judgment, I am not going to be able to point to anyone else for what I did or did not do. (Sorry, this got a bit preachy at the end.)