The Sheen Beatification Debacle: Why?! by Phil Lawler

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By Phil Lawler, Catholic Culture, Dec 06, 2019

Phil Lawler has been a Catholic journalist for more than 30 years. He has edited several Catholic magazines and written eight books. Founder of Catholic World News, he is the news director and lead analyst at See full bio.

Further thoughts on the Sheen-beatification debacle:

  • According to Father Raymond de Souza , a very reliable reporter, Peoria’s Bishop Daniel Jenky pressed the Vatican to set an early date for the beatification. Why the haste? There’s an obvious danger in a rush toward any beatification or canonization. If there’s any hint of a negative report about the candidate, or any reason to question the process, it should be thoroughly investigated before a final decision is announced. Naturally, those with a special devotion to Archbishop Sheen want to see him recognized ASAP. But impatience is not a virtue; no harm is done by waiting until every question is answered.

  • But if the Bishop of Peoria was in a rush, no doubt that was partly because of the long months of delay that had dogged Archbishop Sheen’s cause, due to the costly and unseemly legal tug-of-war with the New York archdiocese over his physical remains. If the New York archdiocese hadn’t made every possible legal appeal to delay the process, the Sheen beatification might have happened already—before the specter of an attorney-general’s report made the bishops of New York so nervous.

  • Of course the attorney general sees an opportunity to exploit this situation only because for decades, bishops covered up criminal activity.  ….

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