08 May 2017
Holy Laypeople

The Church: A People of Saints

Promulgation of Decrees concerning 4 miracles, the martyrdom of a father, and the heroic virtues of 7 Servants of God, including three other lay faithful
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Twelve Decrees for the same number of Causes of Beatification. This is the image of the Church of a people of saints, heroic in martyrdom, in religious profession, and in daily life. Many different members of God’s People appear on the list of Decrees authorized by the Pope on May 4th—the heroic virtues of two cardinals: Elia dalla Costa (Archbishop of Florence) and Francis Xavier Nguyen Van Thuan (Vietnamese, who, for many years, was imprisoned in harsh conditions and went through stirring experiences); a capuchin Friar and Priest; five Foundresses of Religious Institutes; the martyrdom of a father, Luciano Botovasoa; and the heroic virtues of Alessandro Nottegar (layman and father), Edvige Carboni and Maria Guadalupe Ortiz, both laywomen.

These are not exemplary figures of a long bygone past. Only four lived in the 19th century; 7 the others all lived in the 20th century and one, Cardinal Van Thuan, died just fifteen years ago. Holiness is alive in the Church of all times, as a visible sign of the Lord’s presence, and it confirms his promise: “I will be with you every day until the end of the world.”

In the picture, the four laypeople whose decrees have been promulgated: Lucien Botovasoa, martyr (top left), and clockwise: Maria Guadalupe Ortiz, Edvige Carboni, Alessandro Nottegar.