VATICAN CITY — Following a meeting between the council of cardinals and Pope Francis Saturday, the Vatican announced that Blesseds Paul VI and Oscar Romero will be canonized together Oct. 14, 2018.
During an ordinary consistory May 19, Francis decreed that the two blesseds will be canonized alongside four others: Blessed Francesco Spinelli, a diocesan priest and founder of the Institute of the Adorers of the Blessed Sacrament; Blessed Vincenzo Romano, a diocesan priest from Torre de Greco in Italy; Blessed Maria Caterina Kasper, a German nun and founder of the Institute of the Poor Handmaids of Jesus Christ; and Blessed Nazaria Ignazia of St. Teresa of Jesus, founder of the Congregation of the Misioneras Cruzadas de la Iglesia Sisters.
As expected, the canonizations will take place during the 2018 Synod of Bishops on the topic of “Young People, the Faith and Vocational Discernment” Oct. 3-28.
The Vatican had announced March 7 that Pope Paul VI and Archbishop Oscar Romero would be canonized following the recognition of a second miracle through each of their intercessions.
Born Giovanni Montini in 1897 in the town of Concesio, Italy, the future Pope Paul VI was ordained a priest at the age of 22. He served as archbishop of Milan before his election as Bishop of Rome in 1963.
As pope, he oversaw much of the Second Vatican Council, which had been opened by Pope St. John XXIII, and in 1969, he promulgated a new Roman Missal. He died in 1978 and was beatified by Pope Francis Oct. 19, 2014.
Pope Francis himself unofficially confirmed the news of Paul VI’s canonization during his annual meeting with the priests of Rome Feb. 17.
Apart from his role in the Council, Paul VI is most widely known for his landmark encyclical Humanae Vitae, which was published in 1968 and reaffirmed the Church’s teaching against contraception in wake of the sexual revolution. This year marks the 50th anniversary of the historic encyclical.
Both miracles attributed to Paul VI’s intercession involve the healing of an unborn child.
Oscar Romero, who was beatified by Pope Francis May 23, 2015, in El Salvador, was the archbishop of the nation’s capital city of San Salvador. He was shot while celebrating Mass March 24, 1980, during the birth of a civil war between leftist guerrilla forces and the dictatorial government of the right.
An outspoken critic of the violence and injustices being committed at the time, Archbishop Romero was declared a martyr who was killed in hatred of the faith for his vocal defense of human rights.