Just in from my Vigil Mass in St Patrick's, one of the chapels of ease here. We blessed and enthroned the Divine Mercy Image in the church - the other two churches will be done tomorrow. This is the reason I am not in Rome - I promised the Lord when I arrived I would enthrone his Image in the parish on Divine Mercy Sunday, so I'm staying true to that (hope he remembers it when he's totting up my time in Purgatory - if I make it there - mercy, Lord, mercy!!).
I'm watching the Vigil for Pope John Paul's beatification in the Circus Maximus live on EWTN. Great event. Friends are there and I have been getting texts - I hope they are praying for me.
As I watch I am intrigued - as they pray the rosary they are going live to various Marian sanctuaries around the world - John Paul loved doing that. But it has left me a little puzzled. Rome has been reminding us that beatification is a local event - the cult of a Blessed cannot be celebrated outside the local area without permission. Strange, this universal emphasis in this celebration. As I say that, of course I recognise that Pope John Paul is of universal significance, so one might wonder, is beatification meaningless in his case?
I wonder - should the Congregation not just have examined more miracles, skip beatification and just canonise him - as they did in the early church? His cult, influence and significance is already universal. I realise there is a procedure and it has to be followed, even though the critics of Pope John Paul are trying to make out it is all rushed and the Cause not properly adhered to. Anyway, just thinking out loud.
Monday evening - St Mary's, Drogheda, Fraternity Mass of Thanksgiving for the Beatification and declaration of Blessed John Paul II as co-patron, 7.30pm. If you live in Ireland - COME!! We will have relics of Blessed John Paul for the veneration of the faithful, so bring a crowd - bring the sick - we might get the miracle for his canonisation at the Mass.