President General travelled from Brazil to deliver this documentation supporting the cause for canonization.
On October 6, 2020, a significant date in the history of our beloved Society of St. Vincent de Paul, the 16th President General, fellow member Renato Lima de Oliveira, amidst the pandemic, solemnly handed over to the Congregation for the Causes of Saints (Rome) the documents concerning an allegedly miraculous cure ascribed to Bl. Antoine-Frédéric Ozanam. The President was accompanied by Fr. Giuseppe Guerra, Vincentian priest of the Congregation of the Mission (CM) and postulator of the cause in Rome.
Msgr. Marcello Bartolucci, CM secretary, joyfully receive all the documents, which amounted to 900 pages (around 12 kg), duly wrapped and sealed: medical, expert and technical reports, witness testimonies, as well as other papers produced by the Eccleasiastical Court in Mariana (Brazil), the archdiocese where the alleged miracle occurred. As of now, the Congregation for the Causes of Saints will be in charge of overseeing the process, including the research carried out by Vatican physicians and experts.
“Now more than ever, we need to intensify our prayers to the Good God, individually and collectively, for a speedy canonisation process of Bl. Antoine-Frédéric Ozanam. It is time to promote holy hours, Holy Masses, fasts, spiritual retreats, parish meetings, and conference/council reflections. In short, we must become true devotees of Ozanam, and do our best to raise his name toward sainthood.”, stressed our President Renato Lima.
According to Fr. Giuseppe Guerra, the thorough investigation conducted by the Ecclesiastical Court of the archdiocese in Mariana is “truly remarkable”, since it was carried out in only 11 months, with all the information required in the Vatican phase to be overseen by the Congregation for the Causes of Saints. “Let us have faith and, God willing, the Holy Church will shortly decide on this alleged miracle ascribed to Ozanam. The world should have a saint like Ozanam, an outstanding role model as a Catholic, a husband, a father and a professional”, underscored our beloved Fr. Guerra, who also took part in the beatification process in 1980/1990.
The Council General International is pleased to share with the Vincentian Community around the world (not only with SSVP members, but also with our brothers and sisters belonging to the Vincentian Family) the immense joy of accomplishing this major milestone. In 1925, the cause for Ozanam’s canonisation was started, 95 years ago, and, thanks God, despite the current global health crisis, we have something to celebrate. “It’s very touching to know that we are on the right track. We need a miracle for Ozanam to be declared a saint, and I do believe this moment is drawing ever closer”, stated our President General.
The Council General takes this opportunity to thanks all those involved in Ozanam’s canonisation process, who are part of ‘Amin de Tarrazi’ Commission: fellow member Antonio Gianfico (Italy), fellow member Adrian Abel (England & Wales), fellow member Sebastián Gramajo (Argentina), Padre Vinícius Teixeira (Brazil) and Fr. Luís Botelho (vice postulator in Brazil), and Fr. Guerra and President General. A special thanks to Superior Councils for disseminating the great legacy of the seven SSVP founders across their territories, and for promoting the devotion to Ozanam.
As for the details pertaining to the second allegedly miraculous cure, all the religious people and Vincentians involved have signed a confidentiality agreement, sworn on the Holy Bible, so the information thereof cannot be disclosed. However, it can be stated that this alleged miracle is very significant, and we have full confidence in the work undertaken by the Congregation for the Causes of Saints. The investigation to be carried out during this phase may take time, so the date for completion is unspecified.