Juan Diego: Difference between revisions

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As not infrequently happens, the process for canonization in this case was subject to delays and obstacles of various kinds. In the instantthis case, certain interventions were initiated through unorthodox routes in early 1998 by a small group of ecclesiastics in Mexico (then or formerly attached to the [[Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe|Basilica of Guadalupe]]) pressing for a review of the sufficiency of the historical investigation.{{efn|The first intervention was by letter sent on February 4, 1998 by Carlos Warnholz, [[Guillermo Schulenburg]] and Esteban Martínez de la Serna to Archbishop (later Cardinal) [[Giovanni Battista Re]] then ''sostituto'' for General Affairs of the [[Secretariat of State (Vatican)|Secretariat of State]] which, in fact, has no competency over canonizations; this was followed by a letter dated March 9, 1998 to Cardinal Bovone, then pro-prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, signed by the same three Mexican ecclesiastics as also by the historians Fr. [[Stafford Poole]], Rafael Tena and Xavier Noguez; a third letter, dated October 5, 1998, was sent to Archbishop Re signed by the same signatories as those who had signed the letter of March 9, 1998. The texts of these letters are included as appendices to Olimón Nolasco.}} This review, which not infrequently occurs in cases of equipollent beatifications,<ref>See: [http://www.ewtn.com/library/MARY/40MARTYR.htm Canonization of 40 English and Welsh Martyrs], by Paolo Molinari, S.J., ''L'Osservatore Romano'', Weekly Edition in English, October 29, 1970; it is normally handled through the Historical-Hagiographical Office of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints.</ref> was entrusted by the Congregation for the Causes of Saints (acting in concert with the Archdiocese of Mexico) to a special Historical Commission headed by the Mexican ecclesiastical historians Fidel González, Eduardo Chávez Sánchez, and José Guerrero. The results of the review were presented to the Congregation for the Causes of Saints on October 28, 1998, which unanimously approved them.<ref>Cardinal Rivera, ''Carta Pastoral'', nn.29, 35–37.</ref><ref>''cf''. Chávez Sánchez, ''Camino a la canonización''.</ref>{{efn|Baracs names the prominent Guadalupanist Fr. Xavier Escalada SJ (who had first published the [[Codex Escalada]] in 1995) and the Mexican historian and Nahuatl scholar Miguel León-Portilla (a prominent proponent of the argument for dating the ''Nican Mopohua'' to the 16th century) as also participating, with others, in the work of the Commission.}} In the following year, the fruit of the Commission's work was published in book form by González, Chávez Sánchez and Guerrero under the title ''Encuentro de la Virgen de Guadalupe y Juan Diego''. This served, however, only to intensify the protests of those who were attempting to delay or prevent the canonization, and the arguments over the quality of the scholarship displayed by the ''Encuentro'' were conducted first in private and then in public.{{efn|Further correspondence with Rome ensued, later leaked to the press and eventually published in full by (Fr. Manuel) Olimón Nolasco: letters of September 27, 1999 to [[Cardinal Sodano]], then Secretary of State, from the original three Mexican ecclesiastics who had initiated the correspondence; of May 14, 2000 to Archbishop (now Cardinal) [[Tarcisio Bertone]], then secretary of the [[Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith]] signed by those three again, as well as by the three historians who had co-signed the letter of March 9, 1998; and, finally, another letter to Sodano of December 4, 2001 from the same three Mexican ecclesiastics as well as from Fr. Olimón Nolasco, the main purpose of which was to criticize Cardinal Rivera for "demonizing" those who were opposed to the canonization. On all this correspondence, see Baracs.}} The main objection against the ''Encuentro'' was that it failed adequately to distinguish between the antiquity of the cult and the antiquity of the tradition of the apparitions; the argument on the other side was that every tradition has an initial oral stage where documentation will be lacking. The authenticity of the [[Codex Escalada]] and the dating of the ''[[Nican Mopohua]]'' to the 16th or 17th century have a material bearing on the duration of the oral stage.{{efn|For the polemic, see: González Fernández, Fidel, Eduardo Chávez Sánchez, José Luis Guerrero Rosado; Olimón Nolasco; and Poole (2005). Brading<ref>{{harvp|Brading|2001|pp=338–341, 348–360}}</ref> and Baracs offer dispassionate views of the controversy. For a sympathetic review in Spanish of ''Encuentro'', see Martínez Ferrer.}} Final approbation of the decree of canonization was signified in a [[Papal consistory|Consistory]] held on February 26, 2002, at which Pope John Paul II announced that the rite of canonization would take place in Mexico at the Basilica of Guadalupe on July 31, 2002,<ref>AAS 95 [2003] pp.801–803</ref> as indeed occurred.<ref>See John Paul II, [https://www.vatican.va/holy_father/john_paul_ii/homilies/2002/documents/hf_jp-ii_hom_20020731_canonization-mexico_en.html Homily] at the canonization Mass, July 31, 2002.</ref>
==Historicity debate==