He stressed that this decision didn’t represent any relaxing of the Vatican’s overall standards for canonization, but represented a unique situation, given that the church this year is marking the 50th anniversary of Vatican II.
“John XXIII is someone who we know is beloved in the church, we’re in the 50th anniversary of the Council which he started, and I don’t think any of us have any doubts about his virtues,” Lombardi said.
Cardinal Stanislaw Dziwisz, John Paul’s longtime secretary, was clearly pleased that his pope would finally be made a saint.
“John Paul II’s holiness was simple, humble, of service,” Dziwisz wrote in yesterday’s Vatican newspaper, L’Osservatore Romano. “He lived for God and brought others to God.”