Tom McFeely is the National Catholic Register’s News Editor. He lives in British Columbia.
Below is the text of a press release issued by the Knights of Columbus, about recent developments in the cause for canonization of Father Michael McGivney, the founder of the Knights:
Tribunal submits additional information on reported McGivney miracle to Vatican
Important step forward taken in the cause of Father Michael McGivney
(HARTFORD, CT)—The cause for sainthood of Father Michael McGivney, a parish priest of the Archdiocese of Hartford and founder of the Knights of Columbus, took a further step forward recently, with the transmittal of a supplemental report on a reported miracle attributed to Father McGivney’s intercession.
On Tuesday, Sept. 22, officials of a supplemental tribunal of the Archdiocese of Hartford formally sent the new report to the Vatican’s Congregation for the Causes of Saints. The tribunal gathered more testimony, interviewing additional witnesses, including several medical doctors, about the circumstances of a reported miracle.
The cause for Father McGivney’s sainthood was opened by Hartford Archbishop Daniel Cronin in December 1997 and was presented to the Vatican in 2000. Pope Benedict XVI declared him “Venerable” in March 2008. Father McGivney founded the Knights of Columbus in 1882 and died in 1890 at the age of 38.
The new report was signed and presented to Archbishop Henry Mansell at a small ceremony in the chapel at the chancery of the archdiocese. The postulator of the cause, Dr. Andrea Ambrosi, travelled from Rome to Hartford for the occasion. Dominican Father Gabriel O’Donnell, academic dean at the Dominican House of Studies in Washington, D.C., joined in preparation of the supplemental report.
The event was attended by Supreme Knight Carl Anderson, other supreme officers, three relatives of Father McGivney and a number of archdiocesan officials.
Anderson said that submission of the new report “marks an important step forward. The Vatican’s Congregation for the Causes of Saints will now have valuable additional testimony that clarifies and adds significantly to the original submission. We believe that the Congregation will now have all the information it needs to complete its assessment of the case, although of course this review could take several years.”
“Father McGivney’s beatification would be an important event,” Anderson added, “not only for Knights of Columbus, but for the many thousands of parish priests who quietly do the Lord’s work in parishes each day and regard him as an outstanding example for priests everywhere. In this ‘Year for Priests’ it is an especially appropriate step forward.”