Time’s “The Rhythm of the Saints”

Time magazine posted an interesting feature on its website today, looking forward to tomorrow’s noteworthy Martin beatification.  It’s called “The Rhythm of the Saints” … and no, it’s not about the ways married saints and blesseds have regulated their pregnancies!

It’s a click-through by David Van Biema featuring photos and basic information on eight prominent figures who are “likely to be canonized in the next few years; and four more whom it arguably should make saints, but won’t.”  Under Van Biema’s list of likely candidates, you’ll read about Mother Teresa, Pope John Paul II, Dorothy Day, Cardinal John Henry Newman, Archbishop Oscar Romero, Pope Pius XII, Pope John XXIII, Kateri Tekakwitha, and Pier Giorgio Frassati. 

Then keep on clicking and you’ll find the four “deserving but not likely candidates”: Cardinal Joseph Bernardin (“prognosis: fading”), Thomas Merton (“too complex to make it”), Dietrich Bonhoffer and Martin Luther King, Jr. (non-Catholics).

It’s worth a visit — level-headed, even-handed, and generally respectful of the whole concept of sainthood and canonization.  Not a person on the list I wouldn’t really enjoy seeing canonized. 

Of course, the non-Catholic two raise thorny questions, but they may not be insurmountable ones on a doctrinal level.  (Van Biema notes that even the “conservative” Fr. Richard John Neuhaus hopes we’ll open canonization to non-Catholics.)  Then there’s the issue of MLK’s marital moral failings, but then again, there are plenty of other already canonized folks who had significant moral failings of their own.

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