If you’re a Catholic, you might be wondering about the history of the Catholic saints. Many Catholics know of the Blessed Virgin Mary, St. John the Baptist, and St. Francis of Assisi. But do you know the history of the other, lesser-known saints? Many people have a favorite saint. Maybe it’s someone who identifies with them, or someone they admire, or even someone who they’d like to be more like. Regardless of your favorite saint, you’re sure to find something of interest.
For the most part, Catholic saints are simply souls whose bodies have gone to Heaven. This doesn’t mean that we can worship them – that’s not the point. However, the Catholic Church does recognize some of these souls by canonizing them. This process is lengthy, and it takes years for someone to become a saint. If you want to know more about the process of canonization, check out the US Conference of Catholic Bishops website.
To become a saint, a person must first have been canonized by the bishop of their diocese. Then a group of people appointed by him is chosen to study the candidate and make a final decision. This group reviews the candidate’s life, writings, and death and considers whether or not they meet the standards for sainthood. If the group finds them worthy, the candidate is then awarded the title of Venerable.