Perhaps this post will help quell some confusion as to what is being asserted in the current Pope John Paul II beatification.*Canonization is the supreme glorification by the Church of a Servant of God raised to the honours of the altar with a decree declared definitive and preceptive for the whole Church, involving the solemn Magisterium of the Roman Pontiff.
This is expressed unequivocally in the formula: “Ad honorem Sanctae et Individuae Trnitatis… auctoritate Domini Nostri Jesu Christi, beatorum Apostolorum Petri et Pauli ac Nostra… Beatum N. N. Sanctum esse decernimus ac definimus, ac Sanctorum Catalogo adscribimus, statuentes eum in universa Ecclesia inter Sanctos pia devotione recoli debere”.
Beatification, on the other hand, consists in the concession of a public cult in the form of an indult and limited to a Servant of God whose virtues to a heroic degree, or Martyrdom, have been duly recognized, as is pointed out by the respective formula: “…facultatem facimus ut Venerabilis Servus Dei N. N. Beati nomine in posterum appelletur, eiusque festum… in locis ac modis iure statutis quotannis celebrari possit”.*Excerpt from New Procedures in the Rite of Beatification, Congregation for the Causes of Saints, Sept. 29, 2005. Other distinctions are referenced in the article for those who wish to read it.