Kerala nun to be canonised Oct 12

March 3rd, 2008 - 12:52 pm ICT by admin  

Thiruvananthapuram, March 3 (IANS) After a 55-year-long process, Kerala nun Sister Alphonsa will be canonised at the Vatican Oct 12. Father Paul Thellekat, official spokesperson of the Syro Malabar Catholic Church, told IANS that the official declaration and the ceremony would take place during the Synod of Bishops conference, which would be held Oct 5-26 at the Vatican.

“Incidentally, Sister Alphonsa becomes the first native Indian to be canonised Oct 12 along with an Italian priest, a nun from Switzerland and a lay woman from Ecuador,” said Thellekat.

He added that even though Gonsalo Garcia of Bombay was martyred by crucifixion on Feb 5, 1597, at Nagasaki in Japan and canonised by Pope Pius IX on June 8, 1862, he is often referred to as a Portuguese saint because his father was a Portuguese.

Blessed Alphonsa’s name for canonisation was cleared by Pope Benedict XVI on June 1, 2007 and the date for the event was announced last week.

Alphonsa was born in Kudamaloor, a rural village near Kottayam to Joseph and Mary on Aug 19, 1910.

Having lost her mother at a very young age, she was brought up by her maternal aunt and educated by an uncle who was a priest. She faced several health problems, which eventually claimed her life on July 28, 1946.

She is buried at Bharananganam, in the Diocese of Palai in Kottayam district. Her tomb has turned into a centre of pilgrimage and many miracles have reportedly occurred there.

On Dec 2, 1953, Eug

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