Canonization of a Protestant?


My ex-Catholic friend at work said that JP2 canonized some 300 protestants during the Jubilee (or around that time). Has anyone heard of this? It’s not possible for a Protestant to be canonized is it??? Thanks.


Couldn’t happen. One of the requirements for canonization is that teachings/writings must be free of error. This is one of the reasons why the cause for someone like John Paul the Great will take much longer than the canonizations he did himself in life. A protestant will either subscribe to one of the myriad errors out there or will become one of the fold.

If we ever do canonize outside the Church, I would suggest my mother be the first.


Your point regarding the writings of the individuals to be canonized…one issue…didn’t JP2 canonize a big group of Chinese martyrs in 2000? How do you canonize a group? Are each persons activities evaluated or were they actually canonized as a group for their courageous act of martyrdom?


i am not sure this is true. can you show me where it says this? it seems that many saints have actually disagreed on certain points at certain times. just read peter abelard’s (i know he was later a heretic) Sic et Non, Yes and No. he takes certain issues and places writings from church fathers (most of whom are canonized) next to each other and they disagree on the issue. now, i would say that they all would fall in line if and when the church came to a conclusion on the issue, but i don’t think all of their writings have to be free from error because some of them wrote before certain things were defined and they seem to disagree with what eventually came to be doctrine.


Couldn’t happen. One of the requirements for canonization is that teachings/writings must be free of error…

Not true. There are some who were non-Catholics who are in the calendar. St. Isaac of Nineveh who was a Nestorian is in the Roman calendar. St. Gregory Palamas - post Great Schism Eastern Orthodox saint - is in the Byzantine Catholic calendar.

I don’t know about what the OP is speaking of though.

  1. When a group is canonized, they do usually try to look into each person’s life as far as it is known. But honestly, any martyr, so long as he isn’t screaming “down with the pope and up with Satan” as he dies, and so long as he clearly is killed “in hatred of the faith”, is going to be vetted as okay. Martyrdom trumps all sorts of everything. And martyrs often die in large groups.

But yeah, it’s generally pretty clear whether they’re Catholics or not. And many of the Chinese martyrs were more Catholic than I am. I don’t know if I’d have had the guts, as an elementary school kid, to sneak into a guarded, desecrated church every night and carefully eat a few – just a few, so it wouldn’t be noticed – of the consecrated Hosts which had scattered about the floor by the persecuting soldiers, eating the crumbs right off the floor without using my hands. But that’s what one of those great saints did, and was eventually caught and martyred for doing.

A little kid. It humbles you.

  1. A saint’s writings should be free of heretical error – or the saint should make a statement submitting judgment of all errors to the Church, and bowing to her Magisterium. Errors committed before the Church makes any kind of definition of a problem – well, obviously, that doesn’t count, does it? People have to know they’re saying something heretical before they can be a heretic.

Anybody can make a mistake or take a different side than what the Church eventually figures out is God’s truth. Persevering deliberately in something wrong until death is the problem.

  1. No Protestants have been canonized. There are some Catholic martyrs who had Protestant companions (and were martyrs also), but the Protestants weren’t canonized and put in the calendar.

  2. St. Gregory Palamas, etc. are included in the Byzantine Catholic calendar, yes. First off, because the Orthodox churches never lost the validity of their apostolic powers, and hence all those Eastern people still had the power to acclaim holy people as saints. Thus it’s logical to let folks keep their calendar when the Byzantine Rite folks acknowledge the Pope.

Secondly, because if somebody who’s been declared a real saint seems like a schismatic, he’s obviously not. I believe the usual interpretation was that St. Gregory Palamas was invincibly ignorant in this matter.


Correct. Of course, one is not out on a limb by saying that anyone martyred for the faith is indeed in Heaven, and, therefore, a saint. We must remember (and remind others) that there are more saints in Heaven than there are Saints on the calendar. What’s more, the souls in Purgatory are also part of the Communion of Saints.

– Mark L. Chance.


Ask your friend you provide you some evidence of this. If he can’t then its unfounded speculation.


Have a look at these:

*][/LIST]And then at this:
*][/LIST]Helmut Harder, professor emeritus at Canadian Mennonite Bible College, Winnipeg, Manitoba, reported on a consultation at Bose Monastery in Italy in March 2004, which addressed the possibility of ecumenically recognizing one common "cloud of witnesses. (Heb.12:1) The group at Bose identified three reasons for building an ecumenical martyrology: to provide the occasion to urge gestures of penitence and reconciliation; to engage the churches in the urgent task of building unity and community; and to nurture disciples.

Participants at the conference agreed that religious martyrdom deserves much greater study, especially in an ecumenical setting, so that the various Christian traditions can achieve a shared “right remembering” of historical facts. Further study of this kind was specifically recommended by the report of the international dialogue, “Called Together to Be Peacemakers,” which was released by Mennonite World Conference and the Vatican in early 2004.

Conference participants endorsed the formation of an organizing committee to plan an institute dedicated specifically to the ecumenical study of Christian martyrs.

That leads on to this:
*],en/[/LIST]Through many years of work, the Comunita di Bose, under the leadership of Riccardo Larini, has now put together an “ecumenical martyrology”. It is an impressive volume. It attempts to depict briefly witnesses from all Christian churches. Each day of the year is given over to one, or sometimes several, prominent figures of Christianity. The volume also reproduces the day-by-day lists of witnesses and martyrs as remembered according to the calendars of different churches. The scope of the new calendar is very broad; it presents not only those who clearly confessed Christ but also patriarchs and prophets from the Old Testament. It also finds space for members of the Jewish faith and the “righteous” of other religions. We encounter, for instance, the names of Gandhi and Confucius.

Then comes this review,which deserves careful reading;
*]The price paid for this decision is a certain lack of clarity. What is the book’s real purpose? Does it simply want to offer the chance to remember, day by day, people who have opened new horizons through their witness to the church of Jesus Christ? Or is it a martyrology in the stricter sense of the word? A whole further list of people should be added if one is really trying to propose a book of witnesses. I am thinking, for example, of the great personalities of the ecumenical movement like John Mott, Charles Brent, Robert Gardiner, and others. If, however, it is a case of a martyrology in the strict sense of the word then numerous, to some extent less well-known, witnesses should also be remembered: for example, Calvin should not be mentioned but Reformation martyrs from early 16th-century France such as Jean Valliere, Jacques Pouent, Etienne Mangin, Marie la Catelle and the martyrs of Lyon should be.[/LIST]
It seems almost a pity to point out that those who oppose the Catholic Church & her Faith cannot be martyrs. One might well speak of chaste adultery as of martyrdom in opposition to the Church.

Gandhi was no more a Christian - let alone a Catholic; never mind a Catholic Saint - than any of us is the Mother of God. The Mennonites do at least not claim to be Catholics.

This insanity is another of the lunatic projects of JP2 - he wanted an ecumenical martyrology; & it seems he got it.

From another Mennonite article:
*]On May 7, 2000, Pope John Paul II presided over the **"Ecumenical Commemoration of Witnesses to the Faith in the Twentieth Century"at the Roman Coliseum along with representatives of other Christian traditions. **Testimonies were read of those who suffered and were killed under Soviet and communist totalitarianism, Nazism, and fascism out of hatred for the faith and those who died while evangelizing and serving in various parts of the world. Of those named, eight martyrs were Roman Catholics, and there was one from each of the following traditions: Orthodox, Armenian, Anglican, Lutheran, and Baptist. This element of the Jubilee Year celebrations grew out of the pope’s “concern for all the Churches and Ecclesial Communities, including those not yet in full communion, to acknowledge an ecumenism lived in giving one’s life in sacrifice for Christ.”[/LIST][LIST]


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