Pope Francis creates new path to sainthood: offering life for others

(AP) Pope Francis has added a fourth pathway to possible sainthood.

Until now, gaining consideration for sainthood in the Catholic Church required martyrdom, living a life of heroic virtue or — less frequently invoked — having a clear saintly reputation.

The Vatican announced Tuesday that the pope has issued a motu proprio “Maiorem Hac Dilectionem” outlining a new route: people who lived a good Catholic life and who freely accepted a certain and premature death for the good of others.

This is the first change to the main sainthood requirements in centuries.

Under the new category, a miracle must be attributed to the candidate’s intercession prior to beatification, the first step toward canonization as a saint. Martyrdom, which stipulates being killed out of hatred for the faith, does not require a miracle. [More]

SOURCE

AP/Catholic Herald