[quote="trickster, post:1, topic:275311"]
I have read a bit about "canonizing" lately. I heard that they have or want to canonize Queen Isabella of Spain and her husband. As an aboriginal person I find that offensive given the destruction that european states and the church played in the role of our people's cultural genocide...
Question: What standards do we use to decide whether a person is a saint or not? Like should they be vetted like the Republican candidates :)
Actually, there is only one criteria necessary for canonization to be valid and to require an assent of faith on the part of the faithful. That criteria is, "The pope says so."
The canonical "requirements" for canonization are created to setup a system or a process. However, that system is not binding on the Church. The pope can dispense with it or modify it at any time.
If we go by the canonical process the steps are very clear:
The person lived a life of heroic Christian virtue.
There are two proven miracles that can be absolutely attributed to the deceased.
If we examine number one, the issue of how the Europeans dealt with the indigenous peoples of their colonies is not a reflection on the personal holiness of the monarch. The monarch is responsible for his moral choices, not those of his subjects. He is responsible to leading his subjects, but not for them following. This is where religious freedom kicks in. The monarch can lead, but he cannot choose for his subjects. Their choices are their own.
In addition, one has to factor the culture of the monarch. The monarch can only be held responsible for what he knows, not for what is understood through social evolution. These understandings come after the monarch is long dead. In this case, the common belief of the time was that it was the duty of the Catholic nations of Europe to bring Catholicism on their colonies, even if it meant using force. In their mind, the force was a justified means for saving souls. The whole concept of religious freedom does not really become clear until after WW II. It was rather nebulous at the end of the Middle Ages, almost non-existent.
The question left to the commission is whether the candidate being postulated lived a life of virtue that surpasses that which is ordinary for his time and circumstance, not our time and circumstances. If the Defender of the Faith (formerly known as the Devil's Advocate) concedes that there is no argument that can be made against the candidate, the case is closed and the candidate is proclaimed Venerable, meaning that his faith is exemplary.
Then you wait for the miracles. One for beatification and the second for canonization.
However, all of this is water under the bridge if the pope believes that the person is a saint and decides to bypass an investigation into the person's a life and an investigation into alleged miracles.
This was the case with St. Francis, St. Clare, and St. Anthony of Padua. In all three cases, the two popes involved said that they knew that these individuals had lived a life of heroic Christian virtue and they believed the alleged miracles; therefore, no investigation was necessary into their lives or the miracles. The popes canonized them.
A canonization is an infallible decree made from the Chair of Peter. Whether it's politically correct, diplomatic or not, once the pope says that the faithful must venerate the person as a saint, everything else that may have resulted from their actions is irrelevant. Those things are considered to be unintended effects.
A simple case is the beatification of Bl. John Paul. Many argue that it should not have happened and that he should not be canonized because of the sexual abuse, the liturgical abuses and other problems that arose in the Church during his time. Pope Benedict's response was firm and final. None of these were intended by the candidate, nor were they ever under his control, because the pope cannot micromanage the Church. It's impossible to be everywhere and deal with every issue. You must delegate and you have to trust those to whom you delegate.
The pope's mind is made up not by what happens around the candidate, but by the actual faith and virtue of the candidate. I'm not sure whether the Catholic Monarchs will ever be canonized or not. But if they are, it will be because of their faith and virtue, not those of their subjects.
As I said, the pope can dispense with an investigation into their lives, skip beatification and infallibly canonized and those of us who do not like it, will have to give an assent of faith, regardless of what history books say.
Having lived in South America as a missionary, there is no doubt that the Europeans did a great deal of harm to the local people and the resentment is still there today. So much so that the indigenous people refuse and reject anything in Catholicism that smells European. You have two parallel Catholic communities, the whites and mestizos, who are the descendants of the Europeans and the indigenous people. You can the differences in how they celebrate liturgy, religious art and architecture and religious music. The Franciscans and Dominicans did a very good job of taking Europe out of Catholicism in order to bring in the indigenous people.
But the economic and moral disaster that the Europeans left will take another hundred years to clean up, unless they do as we have done in North America . . . segregate the indigenous people from the mainstream. I don't see them doing that, since the indigenous people make up 1/3 of the population, unlike North America.