The Church canonizes holy people to present them as models of the Christian life and as powerful intercessors.
- The Church studies the life and works of candidates for evidence of the gifts of the Holy Spirit, for humility and prudence and prayerfulness, and for the virtues of Faith, Hope and Charity.
- The Church also wants evidence that the memory of these individuals continues to inspire the faithful and seek their intercession.
More details about sainthood >>
Stages of Sainthood
Stages for Canonization
• Servant of God:
Promoter group (diocese, parish, religious congregation, etc.) through a Postulator asks the local bishop to begin an investigation. If deemed worthy, a “nihil obstat” is granted from Rome and the candidate is declared a “Servant of God.” Diocesan tribunal hears testimony on heroic Christian virtues and sanctity of life. The Postulator presents the "Positio," (Position
Document- is a summary of the sainthood candidate's life), to the Congregation for the Causes of Saints in Rome.
After review of the "Positio" by the Congregation for the Causes of Saints and after their favorable judgment and Papal approval, the candidate is declared “Venerable.”
After a miracle attributed to the intercession of the “Venerable” has been investigated and accepted, the Holy Father decides on Beatification. The candidate is now titled “Blessed.”
After a second miracle is attributed to the intercession of the "Blessed," the Pope may then declare the Blessed a "Saint.” More details about the stages of sainthood >>