Stages of Canonization
Servant of God
Promoter group (diocese, parish, religious congregation, etc.) asks the bishop for an opening of an investigation. A “nihil obstat” is granted from Rome for the candidate to be called, “Servant of God.” Diocesan tribunal hears witnesses and testimony on heroic Christian virtues. “Servant of God” describes someone at this stage of the process.
- Father Patrick Peyton died on June 3, 1992 at the age of 83, in San Pedro, California. He was buried at the cemetery of the Congregation of Holy Cross in Easton, Massachusetts. The cause was transferred from the Archdiocese of Los Angeles (his place of death) to the Diocese of Fall River (the place of his burial). The Cause for Canonization was opened in the Diocese of Fall River in June of 2001.
- On October 1, 2003, Bishop George Coleman, D.D., presided over the opening of the Trial, which will review the heroic practice of virtue and reputation for holiness of Father Peyton. The members of the Theological Commission and the Historical Commission were officially appointed.
- Theological Commission is appointed to study the candidate’s writings, published and unpublished to ascertain faithfulness to teachings of the Catholic Church.
- The Historical Commission is appointed to collect and examine all the documents of the candidate.
The Postulator presents acts and documentation (Positio) to the Congregation for the Causes of Saints in Rome. After favorable judgment and Papal approval, the candidate is declared “Venerable.”
After a miracle attributed to the intercession of the “Venerable” has been investigated and accepted, the Holy Father decides on beatification. The candidate is now titled “Blessed.”
After a second miracle is attributed to the intercession of the “Blessed,” the Pope may then declare the Blessed a “Saint.”