This past weekend, Pope Benedict XVI formally announced that the Catholic Church had created seven new saints, including two Americans, Kateri Tekakwitha and Marianne Cope. Tekakwitha’s new title reveals just how absurd the church’s standards are for what constitutes a miracle. The Albany Times Union has the details:
To become a saint, a person first must be declared “venerable,” which Kateri was in 1943. Then he or she must be beatified, or deemed “blessed,” and then they may be considered for canonization. Usually, proof of two miracles must be attributed to the person – one before beatification, one after. But Pope John Paul II waived the miracle requirement in order to beatify Kateri in 1980.
Kateri’s supporters submitted evidence of miracles but believed Kateri’s chances of sainthood died with Pope John Paul, who bestowed sainthood on more people than all other popes combined.
Then, in 2006, a 6-year-old boy cut his lip during a basketball game in Washington state.
Overnight, Jake Finkbonner’s face swelled up and he developed a high fever, according to an NPR report. Doctors at Seattle Children’s Hospital said a flesh-eating bacterium called Strep A was attacking the boy’s face. Over the next few weeks, it destroyed his lips, cheeks and forehead. Doctors told the family the boy was going to die.
The family’s priest asked his congregation to pray to Kateri on Jake’s behalf. The priest chose Kateri because of her facial scars and Indian heritage – Jake is half Lummi Indian.
The prayers started coming in from around the world, and a representative from the Society of the Blessed Kateri went to the hospital to place a pendant of Kateri on the boy’s pillow. The next day, the infection stopped progressing and Jake recovered.
Investigators from the Vatican researched the incident for three years, and on Monday, Pope Benedict approved it as a miracle attributed to Kateri’s intervention.
Wouldn’t you just love to see what that “research” revealed? Because the boy’s recovery couldn’t possibly be explained by the fact that he was receiving medical treatment. No, people prayed to a dead woman and that’s what did it. Of course, others have almost certainly prayed to this woman many times before for someone to recover from a medical problem and they didn’t, so would those be anti-miracles?