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Another strand of hope of Ven Fr Agnelo’s beatification

Panaji: A child's miraculous recovery from critical health and near-death conditions has given another ray of hope to devotees and authorities associated with the cause of Venerable Fr Agnelo de Souza at Pilar.

The favour granted to the child due to the Anjuna-born priest's intercession after fervent prayers in its death throes was mentioned at the Sunday mass during the novena to mark de Souza's 90th death anniversary at Pilar hillock.

As thousands of devotees throng to the holy place daily during the novena for Ven Fr Agnelo's feast on November 20, they are hoping that this 'miracle' may earn him the much-awaited beatification almost a century after his death in Rachol.

"The case of the infant's healing has been referred to the Goa archdiocese. If it's suitability for the canonization of Fr de Souza is confirmed, it will be submitted to Congregation of Saints in Vatican," Fr Tony Fernandes, vice-postulator for the Cause of Venerable Fr Agnelo D'Souza, said.

Two of the four processes for D'Souza's sainthood have been completed and a miracle is needed for his beatification. The pastoral year from June 2016 to May 2017 had been dedicated to pray for his canonization.

For a cure or healing from disease to be considered a miracle, it should have been achieved through prayer, and not medically, and it should be instantaneous.

"The healing or cure should be permanent and complete for it to be called miraculous," Fernandes said.

The Catholic religious consider saints as fruits of the faith of the Church. Earlier, foreign missionaries used to come to Indian shores and bring along with them their saints, like the Franciscans brought St Francis of Assisi and St Claire. The church in Kerala has a couple of saints, while Goan priest St Joseph Vaz, popularly known as Apostle of Ceylon, was canonized by Pope Francis on January 14, 2015.

Fernandes said that it is the right time for Indian, especially Goan missionaries, to set out abroad to spread the Word of God, and for that "saints are important". "We who have a faith of 500 years shouldn't be satisfied with St Joseph Vaz and Venerable Fr Agnelo D'Souza. There should have been more of them for us Goans to emulate," he said.


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Source: Another strand of hope of Ven Fr Agnelo’s beatification

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