THE VATICAN has signalled that a space has been left in the Year of Mercy calendar in September for the possible canonisation of Mother Teresa. September 4 has been set aside if Mother Teresa’s Cause is concluded by then.
The canonisation Mass would be celebrated by Pope Francis in St Peter’s Square at the end of a three-day pilgrimage of people engaged in corporal works of mercy. Vatican spokesman Fr Federico Lombardi said: “September 4 is a hypothesis or plan within the calendar for the jubilee year.”
The Italian news agency AGI reported that a panel of doctors convoked by the Congregation for Saints’ Causes agreed there was no medical or natural explanation for the recovery of a Brazilian man suffering from multiple brain tumours. His healing after prayers for the intercession of Mother Teresa was submitted as the miracle needed for her canonisation.
Fr Lombardi urged caution, however, saying: “The process is still under way and official communications will be given at the appropriate time.” Members of the Congregation for Saints’ Causes have yet to review the doctors’ report on the healing. If the members have no further questions, Pope Francis would be asked to issue a decree recognising the healing as a miracle worked by God through the intercession of Mother Teresa. With the decree, the Pope would survey the world’s cardinals and set a date for a consistory of cardinals who live in or could come to Rome for the occasion. They would be asked to recommend that the Pope canonise Mother Teresa. If the Pope agrees, he would set the date.
Priest found dead in Mexico bore signs of being tortured
A MEXICAN priest has been found dead in the state of Puebla with possible signs of torture, four days after disappearing in mysterious circumstances. The body of Fr Erasto Pliego de Jesus was found with burns and head injuries along a rural road in the municipality of Nopalucan, some 110 miles south-east of Mexico City, state judicial authorities said.
The authorities did not confirm the priest’s identity, but the Archdiocese of Puebla confirmed the priest’s death in a brief statement. Archbishop Victor Sanchez Espinosa of Puebla said: “The Archdiocese of Puebla deeply regrets that a priest, whose life was dedicated to God and the service of others, has been a victim of violence.
“We thank the authorities for all their help in this regrettable occurrence. And for his family members and parish community, we express our closeness and solidarity and lift our prayers for the eternal rest of Fr Erasto Pliego de Jesus.” Details of Fr Pliego’s death remain unknown. A person responding to enquiries at his parish said they did not have any information about what happened, while press reports provided conflicting accounts.
Pope ‘says he will visit Ukraine’
POPE FRANCIS has agreed to visit Ukraine, the country’s president Petro Poroshenko said after a papal audience last week. Although the conflict between Ukraine and Russian-backed separatists continues, Francis and Mr Poroshenko still share the hope that a political solution can be found, the Vatican said after the meeting.
Welcoming Mr Poroshenko to the Vatican, the Pope greeted him in Ukrainian, a Vatican spokesman said.
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