Vatican clears the way for new saints, including American “Angel of Molokai”


On Monday morning, in the presence of Pope John Paul, the Congregation for the Causes of Saints promulgated 15 new decrees that will open the way for two canonizations and 10 beatifications, eight of them for martyrdom.

Cardinal Jose Saraiva Martins, prefect of the congregation, announced a miracle that paves the way  for the canonization of Blessed Alberto Hurtado Cruchaga (1901-1952), a chilean Jesuit who promoted priestly vocations among university students and developed one of the most effective organizations to help the needy in Chile, the “Hogar de Cristo” (Home of Christ).

The other future saint is Blessed Felice Da Nicosia an italian professed lay member of the Order of the Friars Minor Capuchin (1715-1787).

The two future blessed are Pierre Vigne, a French priest founder of the Congregation of the Sisters of the Most Holy Sacrament (1670-1740); and Venerable Servant of God Jean du Sacré Coeur, French, née Léon-Gustave Dehon, founder of the Congregation of the Priests of the Sacred Heart of Jesus (the Dehonians) (1843-1925).

The martyrs to be proclaimed blessed are all Spanish victims of the brutal anti-Catholic movement that killed more than 5,000 priests before and during Spain’s Civil War (1936-1939). They are Jose Tapies Sirvant, Spanish (born 1869), and his six companions: Pascual Araguas Guardia (1899), Silvestre Arnau Pascuet (1911), Jose Boher Foix (1887), Francisco Castell Brenuy (1866), Pedro Martret Moles (1901) and Jose Juan Perot Juanmartí, French (1877), all priests of the diocese of Urgel (Spain.) According to the Vatican decree, they were “murdered due to hatred of the faith during the religious persecution in Spain in 1936.”

Also to be proclaimed blessed are Maria de los Angeles Ginard Marti, Spanish (1894), religious of the Congregation of Sisters, Zealous of Eucharistic Devotion also  killed due to hatred of the faith in Spain in 1936.

Heroic Virtues The Congregation also proclaimed the heroic virtues of nine other Servants of God. The proclamation of Heroic Virtues is the step previous to the proclamation of a miracle that will lead to a beatification.

The list includes Servant of God Mary Anne Barbara Cope (1838-1918),  a German-born American, known as “Mother Marianne of Molokai,”  also as “the Angel of Molokai”. She was a religious of the Sisters of the Third Order of St. Francis of Syracuse, New York. In June 1883, during the second year of her second term as provincial superior, Mother Marianne Cope received a letter from a priest in Hawaii begging for help. He had sent a similar letter to more than 50 religious communities in the United States.

Mother Marianne's was the only response. On October 22, 1883,  she and six other sisters left bound for Hawaii expecting to be there only for a few weeks. But she would never return and would die among the lepers.

The Congregation´s list also includes  Francesco Maria Greco, Italian, priest and founder of the Congregation  the Little Sisters, Workers of the Sacred Hearts (1857-1931);  Jose Gabriel del Rosario Brochero, Argentine, priest (1840-1914);  Silvio Gallotti,  Italian, priest (1887-1927);  Felice Prinetti, Italian, priest of the Congregation of the Oblates of Our Lady and founder of the Congregation of the Daughters of St. Joseph (1842-1916); Candelaria de San Jose, Venezuelan, née Susana Paz Castillo Ramirez, religious and foundress of the Congregation of the Carmelite Sisters of the Third Order, now known as the Carmelite Sisters of Mother Candelaria (1863-1940);  Servant of God Teresa del Corazon Inmaculado de Maria, Spanish, née Teresa Guasch y Toda; religious, co-foundress of the Congregation of the Teresian Carmelite Sisters of St. Joseph (1848-1917); Maria della Passione di Nostro Signore Gesu Cristo, Italian, née Maria Grazia Tarallo,  religious of the Institute of the Sisters, Crucified Adorers of the Eucharist (1866-1912); and  Maria del Pilar Cimadevilla y Lopez-Doriga, Spanish child (1951-1962).

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