Monsignor Richard Mathers, from the New York archdiocese, has been interviewing Maryknollers here these past few days to gather personal testimonies in support of the canonization of Bishop James A. Walsh. The interviews last two hours and ask how the life, spirituality, example and possible canonization of our Co-Founder would impact and inspire the individual missioner. To date, eight such interviews have taken place.
When the topic was first broached two years ago by the Centenary Committee, the consensus was the Maryknollers would support the effort IF it leads to a rekindling of the mission spirit by Catholics in the Church in the U.S.
The cause for Father Thomas Price's canonization is being promoted separately by the Church in North Carolina.
In the race to official recognition of sainthood by a Maryknoller, bets are on Father Vince Capodanno and Bishop Patrick Byrne to get there first. Both are martyrs, thus alleviating the need for hard-to-find and harder-to-substantiate miracles. Capodanno has the full weight of the U.S. military behind his cause; Byrne may be included in the next batch of Korean martyrs to be canonized that consider modern martyrs in the 20th century.
While Bishop Francis X. Ford certainly qualifies as a modern martyr, popular wisdom suggests his cause is on the back burner as relatations between the Vatican and the Peoples Rebublic of China would not benefit from this complication.
One wonders, then, what's stopping the canonization of Archishop Oscar Romero?
Politics? What politics?