Church to List 3 More Saints and 9 New Blessed

Decrees Promulgated; 10 Others Recognized for Heroic Virtue

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VATICAN CITY, DEC. 20, 2004 (Zenit.org).- The Church will canonize three more saints, including a Ukrainian archbishop and a priest who founded a newspaper.



The Vatican Congregation for Sainthood Causes promulgated the decrees for the three today in the presence of John Paul II and the postulators for respective causes.

It also promulgated 19 decrees clearing the way for nine people to be beatified and 10 others who will be recognized for their heroic virtues and dubbed Servants of God.

Cardinal José Saraiva Martins, prefect of the Vatican congregation, read a discourse about the lives of the Servants of God and the blessed during today's ceremony.

"These witnesses of the Gospel continue to speak to the Church and the world through the heroism of their virtues and the holiness of their works," the cardinal said.

"Their memory is particularly alive and incisive in the ecclesial and religious communities of which they formed a part and who served in the name and charity of Christ," he said in the Pope's presence.

The three to be canonized saints are:

-- Blessed Joseph Bilczewski, a Ukrainian archbishop of Leopoli of the Latins (1860-1923). He was a point of reference for Catholics, Orthodox and Jews during World War I and later conflicts.

-- Blessed Zygmunt Gorazdowski, a Ukrainian diocesan priest and founder of the Congregation of the Sisters of St. Joseph (1845-1923). He was also the author of a popular catechism and founded a newspaper and several charitable institutions.

-- Blessed Gaetano Catanoso, an Italian diocesan priest and founder Congregation of the Daughters of Saint Veronica, Missionaries of the Holy Face (1879-1963).

Today's decrees recognized the miracles that open the doors for the beatification of the following Servants of God, whose heroic virtues the Pope had previously recognized.

-- Clemens August von Galen, a German cardinal and bishop of Muenster (1878-1946). He defended the people from the errors and aggressions of Nazism, risking arrest and death. Pope Pius XII elevated him to cardinal. He died a month later, on March 22, 1946, after suffering peritonitis.

-- Luigi Biraghi, an Italian diocesan priest, founder of the Institute of the Religious of St. Marcelina for the education of young women (1801-1879).

-- Bronislaw Markiewicz, a Polish priest and founder of the Congregations of St. Michael the Archangel (1842-1912).

-- Charles de Foucauld, born Charles of Jesus, a French diocesan priest (1858-1916). After a personal conversion, he lived in poverty, contemplation, and humility, witnessing fraternally the love of God among Christians, Jews and Muslims. He was killed in Algeria on Dec. 1, 1916.

-- Mother Rita Amata di Gesù, born Rita Lopez de Almeida, a Portuguese religious and founder of the Institute of the Sisters of Jesus, Mary and Joseph (1848-1913).

-- Maria Crocifissa Curcio, born Rosa, an Italian religious and founder of the Congregation of the Carmelite Missionaries of St. Therese of the Child Jesus (1877-1957).

-- Mother Ascención del Corazon de Jesus, born Fiorentina Nicoli Goñi, a Spanish religious of the Dominicans of the Third Order, co-founder and first superior general of the Dominicans of the Holy Rosary (1868-1940).

-- Mother Marianne Cope, born Barbara, a German religious of the Sisters of the Third Order of St. Francis in Syracuse, New York, (1838-1918). Her mission in Hawaii was linked to that of Blessed Father Damien, apostle of lepers. She died on the Hawaiian island of Molokai on Aug. 9, 1918.

-- Ladislaw Findysz, diocesan priest, (1907-1964). The doors to beatification also opened for a diocesan priest of Polish origin, with the promulgation of the decree on his martyrdom. A parish priest in Nowy Zmigrod, in the present-day Diocese of Rzeszow, he carried out his mission in the time of war and later, under the Communist regime, which imprisoned him in 1963 because of his pastoral ministry. He was humiliated and mistreated in prison. Released, with his health already broken, he died a few months later on Aug. 21, 1964.

In addition, decrees were promulgated recognizing the heroic virtues of 10 Servants of God: two bishops, five priests and three women religious. They are:

-- Luigi Maria Olivares, of the Archdiocese of Milan and former bishop of Sutri and Nepi, Italy, a religious of the Salesian Society of St. John Bosco (1873-1943).

-- Bolewslaw Sloskans, Latvian bishop and apostolic administrator of Mohilev and Minsk (1893-1981).

-- Virgilio Angioni, Italian diocesan priest and founder of the Congregation of the Daughters of Our Lady of Divine Providence and of the Good Shepherd (1878-1947).

-- Ignatius Klopotowski, Polish diocesan priest and founder of the Sisters of Blessed Virgin Mary of Loreto (1866-1931).

-- Michal Spocko, Polish priest (1888-1975).

-- Titus Horten, German priest of the Order of Preachers (1882-1936).

-- Mariano de la Mata Aparicio, Spanish priest and religious of the Order of St. Augustin in Spain (1905-1983).

-- Mary Colomba Bialecka, born Rosa Filippina, Polish religious and founder of the Congregation for the Sisters of the Third Order of St. Dominic (1838-1887).

-- Mother Mary Merkert, Polish religious and co-founder and first superior general of the Congregation of the Sisters of St. Elizabeth (1817-1872).

-- Marta Wiecka, a Pole, member of the Daughters of Charity of St. Vincent de Paul (1874-1904).