John Paul I, who is serving briefly, a ‘smiling’ dad, is beatified

John Paul I, who is serving briefly, a ‘smiling’ dad, is beatified

John Paul I, who is serving briefly, a ‘smiling’ dad, is beatified

Vatican Pope John Paul I (Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved)

Vatican Pope John Paul I (Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved)

Pope Francis on Sunday beatified one of his predecessors, John Paul I, a briefly serving pontiff who stood out for his humility and cheerfulness, and whose sudden death in his bedroom in 1978 shocked the world and fed for years suspicious of his disappearance.

The ceremony in St. Peter’s Square was the last formal step in the Vatican before a possible sanctity for Albino Luciani, an Italian who died 33 days after being elected pontiff.

John Paul I “with a smile communicated the goodness of the Lord”, Francis said in his homily. Francis encouraged people to pray to the newly blessed ecclesiastical so that he “may obtain for us the smile of the soul”.

Last year, Francis approved a miracle attributed to the intercession of John Paul I: that of the healing of a seriously ill 11-year-old girl in 2011 in Buenos Aires. Now a young woman, Candela Giarda told a Vatican press conference last week via video message that she wanted to attend the ceremony but she couldn’t because she recently broke her foot working out in the gym.

Sitting under a canopy outside St. Peter’s Basilica, Francis led the ceremony, which was punctuated by thunder, lightning and pouring rain, pushing cardinals, bishops, the choir and thousands of faithful into the square with open umbrellas.

When he was elected pope on August 26, 1978, Luciani, 65, had been patriarch of Venice, one of the church’s most prestigious positions. In that role, in addition to his former bishop in northeastern Italy, Luciani has issued warnings against corruption, including in banking circles.

In his brief pontificate, which ended with the discovery of the body in his bedroom in the Apostolic Palace, John Paul I immediately established in his speeches a simple and direct way of communicating with the faithful, a change of style considered revolutionary considering suffocation. of the ecclesiastical hierarchy.

Those who fought to one day become a saint emphasized his deep spirituality and his tireless emphasis on the key Christian virtues: faith, hope and charity.

“Let us pray, in his own words: ‘Lord take me as I am, with my defects, with my shortcomings, but let me become what you want me to be’”, said Francis.

John Paul “lived without compromise”, Francis said, greeting Luciani for having “overcome the temptation to put one’s ‘I’ at the center or to seek glory”.

Although the Vatican claimed that John Paul died of a heart attack, it has provided conflicting versions of the circumstances of how his body was discovered. First it was said that a priest who served as his secretary found him, but later recognized that John Paul had been found dead by one of the nuns who brought him the usual morning coffee.

With a huge financial scandal unfolding in Italy at the time involving figures who had ties to the Vatican bank, secular media quickly became suspicious that perhaps Luciani had been poisoned because he intended to eradicate evil.

Books speculating about the circumstances of his death, especially because an autopsy was not performed, have sold millions of copies.

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