Canonization: Pope John Paul II’s biographer George Weigel on importance of canonization

Canonization: Pope John Paul II’s biographer George Weigel on importance of canonization

Radio Vatican--

US Catholic author George Weigel wrote a best-selling two-volume biography of Pope John Paul II and was given unprecedented access to the Polish Pope and the people who knew and worked with him when researching his work. He spoke to Susy Hodges about why he believes this unprecedented double canonization is “an inspired act” on the part of Pope Francis and what it means for the Church and the world.

Weigel praises the decision by Pope Francis to canonize both Popes on the same day saying they “represent the two bookends” of the Second Vatican Council. He says John XXIII had the “inspiration and courage” to summon the Council whilst John Paul II gave Vatican Two its “authoritative interpretation” over the 26 years of his pontificate. For this reason, he believes it is “entirely appropriate” that they should be canonized on the same day.

Contrary to what many people, these two Popes “have much in common,” says Weigel. They are both “radically converted disciples of Jesus Christ” and they both had “a confidence” that the Catholic Church at the end of two millennia “still had important and indeed wonderful things to propose to the world.”

Asked what he learnt for the first time from his close access to Pope John Paul whilst researching his biography “Witness to Hope,” Weigel says he learnt of the pivotal role of Karol Wojtyla’s father in his early years and the decisive period of World War Two for the Polish Pope. Weigel says he was also struck by John Paul’s “deep conviction” that “God is profligate in making saints” and delighted in “raising holy men and women to sainthood.”

Sat, 04/26/2014 - 10:47
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