Bishops hail JPII, John XXIII sainthood

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pope-john-paul-ii-0201 webMANILA, July 6, 2013— Filipino Catholic bishops on Saturday hailed the Vatican decision to canonize the late Polish-born John Paul II.

The bishops said they are pleased that the pontiff who visited the Philippines twice will officially become a saint.

Legazpi Bishop Joel Baylon said that the pope served as an inspiration to the youth and a role model to Church leaders and the world’s Catholics.

“He was instrumental in awakening the spirit of generosity and enthusiasm among the young people to love the Church that’s why it’s really a blessing for the youth that he will become saint,” Baylon said.

“He could draw thousands of young people and listen to him so I hope this time that he is becoming a saint, he could draw more young people closer to the Church,” he said.

Pope Francis yesterday approved a miracle needed to canonize Pope John Paul II and waiving Vatican rules to honor Pope John XIII.

Both popes are closely identified with the historic Second Vatican Council meetings that brought the Church into modern times.

“Their canonization speaks well of the relevance of the Council albeit it’s being misinterpreted and misused by some sectors,” said Lipa Archbishop Ramon Arguelles.

“The Catholic Church more than ever is stronghold of the truth and world’s hope. They were trailblazers,” he said.

For his part, Cubao Bishop Honesto Ongtioco said: “Many people have good memories about these two popes and many will be happy. God continues to be with His people. We glorify God in recognizing people.”

According to Bishop Martin Jumoad of Prelature of Isabela in Basilan, both pontiffs have made the Church relevant to the modern times and brought many people closer to God.

“John XXIII prepared the faithful for changes in the Church and John Paul II implemented many things to make the Church relevant to the present time,” said Jumoad. (CBCPNews)

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