Vatican City, Sep 23, 2016 / 10:03 am
Changes to the regulations for confirming alleged miracles during the causes of saints aim to preserve the scientific rigor of the examination and maintain its distinction from matters of theology, it was announced Friday.
The changes, which were approved by Pope Francis Aug. 24, were announced by the Vatican Sept. 23. They concern the professional secrecy of the proceedings regarding presumed miracles and hold that a supermajority of two-thirds (five out of seven, or four out of six) of the votes from members of the Medical Board must be positive for the cause to continue to the next step.
Previously, only a simple majority of medical experts acknowleding a supernatural healing was required. The changes also stipulate that the medical experts will receive their remuneration only through bank transfer – not cash.
"The purpose of the Regulation can be none other than the good of the Causes, which can never neglect the historical and scientific truth of the alleged miracles," Archbishop Marcello Bartolucci, Secretary of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, wrote regarding the changes. "Just as it is necessary for the legal checks to be complete, convergent and reliable, it is also necessary that their study be performed with serenity, objectivity and sure competence by highly specialised medical experts."