Pope Francis signed the decree authorizing the canonization of Mother Teresa of Calcutta, who will go to the altar as holy next September.

It is likely that the canonization of Mother Teresa takes place in September to coincide with the anniversary of her death and Pope Francis’ Holy Year of Mercy.

Pope Francis authorized the canonization of Mother Teresa of Calcutta. Credit: Church Militant

Pope Francis recognized a miracle attributed to Mother Teresa of Calcutta, making it the second she has made 11 years after her death.

Her canonization occurs after the Catholic Church unanimously approved the “extraordinary healing” of a Brazilian man who in 2008 was at terminal stage because of severe brain issues.

According to NBC News, Father Brian Kolodiejchiuk, a Missionaries of Charity Father who worked closely with Mother Teresa for 20 years and spearheaded the cause of her sainthood, stated that the miracle occurred in December 2008, when the patient, who was in coma, had to undergo an emergency operation, but due to technical problems the surgery had to be postponed for half an hour.

When the neurosurgeon returned to the operating room, he watched the patient sitting, awake, without pain, perfectly conscious and wondering what he was doing there.

According to Kolodiejchiuk, the doctor explained that he had never seen a case like this, and that all similar patients he had treated in his seventeen years of career, had died. Subsequent analysis revealed the patient recovered immediately and fully; and even though the evidence showed that the drug treatment had made him sterile, the man had two children.

Apparently, according to the testimonies given, those close to the patient prayed much to Mother Teresa, to which the patient’s wife was especially devoted.

The study of this miracle began in June of this year, and the approval by the Pope will end a process that already was beatified in 2003, during the pontificate of late Pope John Paul II, after curing the tumor of an Indian woman through divine intervention.

Mother Teresa, whose name was Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu, was born on August 20, 1910, in Skopje, Macedonia.

During her life, she founded the Order of the Missionaries of Charity, and she was known for her efforts on the poor and disadvantaged. She was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1979.

She died on September 5, 1997, having 87 years. Her funeral, in Calcutta, was a national event in India in which millions accompanied her corpse through the streets of the city. The funeral was also attended by heads of state and governments around the world.

Steps to sainthood

According to Crux journal, the Catholic Church makes saints to provide role models for the faithful. However, they stated that the path to sainthood has several steps.

The first step consists of a postulator who gathers testimonies and documentation, and present the case to the Vatican’s Congregation for the Causes of Saints. In there, the congregation’s experts agree whether the candidate lived a virtuous life, and after that, the pope recognizes the “heroic virtues” of the person, who becomes “Venerable Servant of God.”

Successively, if the postulator finds that someone was miraculously cured through prayers to the candidate, and the cure can’t be explained by medical reasons, the case is presented to the congregation as a possible miracle for beatification. Doctors, theologians, bishops and cardinals must ensure that the cure was instantaneous, complete and lasting, and once confirmed, the case is sent to the Pope, who signs a decree, which states that the candidate can be beatified.

A second miracle is needed for canonization, which means the person becomes a saint.

Mother Teresa, one of the most famous and popular person in the Christian world, was beatified by John Paul II on October 19, 2003, in Rome, during a ceremony attended by 300,000 faithful.

Source: NBC News