Benedict approves beatification of Louis and Marie Zelie Martin.
By Cindy Wooden
VATICAN CITY (CNS) – Pope Benedict XVI has approved the beatification of Louis and Marie Zelie Guerin Martin, the parents of St Therese of Lisieux.
The couple will be beatified on October 19, World Mission Sunday, during a Mass in the Basilica of St Therese in Lisieux, France, the Vatican announced on August 19.
St Therese and St Francis Xavier are the patron saints of the missions.
The Vatican did not say who would preside at the Martins’ beatification Mass.
With beatification, the diocese where the candidate lived or the religious order to which the person belonged is authorised to hold public commemorations on the person’s feast day.
With the declaration of sainthood, public liturgical celebrations are allowed around the world.
The Martins were declared venerable, one of the first steps in the sainthood process, in 1994. But despite the active encouragement of Pope John Paul II to move the cause forward, the miracle needed for their beatification was not approved by the Vatican until early July.
Louis lived 1823-1894 and his wife lived 1831-1877. They had nine children, five of whom joined religious orders.
The Vatican also announced on August 19 that four other beatification ceremonies:
l Sister Vincenza Maria Poloni, founder of the Institute of the Sisters of Mercy in Italy, will be beatified on September 21 in Verona, Italy.
l Father Michael Sopocko, founder of the Sisters of Merciful Jesus and spiritual director of St Faustina Kowalska, will be beatified on September 28 at the Church of Divine Mercy in Bialystok, Poland.
l Father Francesco Pianzola, founder of the Missionary Sisters of the Immaculate Queen of Peace, will be beatified on October 4 in Vigevano, Italy.
l Father Francesco Giovanni Bonifacio, martyred in 1946 by Yugoslav communists, will be beatified on October 4 in Trieste, Italy.