by Nicole Winfield
Rome ( Associated Press) –
Pope Francis on Sunday created 10 new saints after recovering from knee pain that forced him to use a wheelchair to preside over the first redemption ceremony at the Vatican in two years.
Francis initially stood for a long period to greet the priests, who presided over the ceremony of about two hours, and then stood for 15 minutes and ended to greet dozens of cardinals and bishops. Vatican cameras remained on the scene to display the pope’s dynamics and to refute speculation about his health and his future.
Francis, 85, then took a long, seated popmobile ride around St. Peter’s Square and Boulevard to greet some of the thousands of people who came out to celebrate the Catholic Church’s newest saints. These include a Dutch clergy-journalist who was killed by the Nazis, a lay Indian convert who was killed for his faith and half a dozen French and Italian priests and nuns who founded religious orders.
Francis told a crowd of more than 45,000 that 10 incorporated holiness into everyday life, adding that the Church needed to embrace this idea rather than the unattainable ideal of personal achievement.
He said from his chair at the altar, “There are not a few heroic signs in holiness, but many small acts of daily love.”
Francis has been complaining of a strain on his right knee for months, and has recently been seen using a wheelchair in public audiences. Sunday’s ceremony was proof that Francis was still able to walk, but it seemed as easy as possible for ligaments to heal before the intense period of travel that began in July: the Vatican made two visits that month. confirmed, one for Congo and one for South Sudan and one for Canada.
It was the first Redemption Mass at the Vatican before the coronavirus pandemic and drew one of the largest crowds in recent days, aside from Easter celebrations last month.
The Italian President, the Dutch Foreign Minister, the French Interior Minister and India’s Minister of Minorities, as well as thousands of loyalists packed the linen piazzas, which were decorated with Dutch flowers in honor of the Rev. Titus Brandsma, a martyr saint. who was killed in 1942 in the Dachau concentration camp.
In the course of demonetisation, a group of Dutch and German journalists formally proposed that Brandsma, along with St. Francis de Sales, noting their work to combat propaganda and fake news during the rise of fascism and Nazism, Be the co-patron saint of journalists. in Europe. According to an open letter sent to Francis this month, journalists noted that Brandsma successfully argued for a ban on Nazi propaganda in Catholic newspapers. There was no immediate reaction from the Pope.
In addition to Brandsma, new sages include the 18th-century Indian convert Lazarus, also known as Devasayam, who mixed with the lower castes of India and was considered a traitor by the Royal Palace of India, who arrested him in 1752. and ordered to be executed.
“That is for the poor,” said Archie Cyril, an Indian pilgrim from Kanyakumari who was in the square for the Mass. “He hated the caste system, it is still going on, but he is a martyr for it,” said Cyril.
César de Bus, a French priest who founded the Fathers of the Religious Order of Christianity and died in 1607, was also canonised; Luigi Maria Palazzolo, an Italian priest who cared for orphans and died in 1886; Giustino Maria Russolillo, an Italian priest who founded a religious order dedicated to the promotion of religious professions and died in 1955; and Charles de Foucault, a French missionary who, after rediscovering his faith as a young man, decided to live among the Tuareg people in the Algerian Sahara and was killed in 1916.
There are four nuns: Marie Rivier, who overcame a sick childhood in France to become a nun and found a religious order and died in 1838; Maria Francesca di Gesso Rubato, an Italian nun who helped establish the religious order and died in Montevideo, Uruguay in 1904; and the Italians Maria di Gesso Santocanale and Domenica Mantovani, who founded the religious orders and died in 1923 and 1934, respectively.
Associated Press Visual journalist Gianfranco Stara contributed.