Vatican – Canonization of Pope John XXIII, Pope John Paul II

Vatican – Canonization of Pope John XXIII, Pope John Paul II… On Sunday, Pope Francis makes history yet again. He makes two Popes saints in a single ceremony–John Paul II and John XXIII, the man who convened the Second Vatican Council in 1959.

A lot has been made of the contrasts between the two Pontiffs. John the XXIII is known as having been a great liberalizing force for the Catholic Church, and John Paul II a real advocate for adhering to its most conservative tenets. But many church insiders say actually the two men represent continuity in the Church. John XXIII made it more accessible to people by replacing Latin masses with vernacular ones, and having priests face the congregations rather than stand with their backs to them. And John Paul II, with his tireless globetrotting, brought the Church to the people.

And he did it for more than a century. You can see the impact of that when you assess the crowds on St. Peter’s Square who have come from around the world to celebrate these canonizations.


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