John Paul II could move toward sainthood this year, report says
File photo from October 21, 2003 shows Pope John Paul II saluting the crowd as he arrives for an ordination ceremony.
January 5th, 2011
02:58 PM ET

John Paul II could move toward sainthood this year, report says

By Richard Allen Greene and Hada Messia, CNN

The late Pope John Paul II could take a big step toward sainthood as early as this year, a longtime Vatican journalist reports.

He could be beatified in a service led by Pope Benedict XVI at the Vatican by the end of 2011 - an event that would be certain to draw hundreds of thousands of faithful.

Medical and theological experts have credited John Paul II with the healing of a nun whose order prayed to him after he died in 2005. Sister Marie-Simon-Pierre says she was cured of Parkinson's disease.

A team of cardinals and bishops will examine the reputed miracle this month and pass their verdict to the pope.

If Benedict XVI confirms that it was a miracle, John Paul will be eligible to be beatified, the last step before sainthood.

Journalist Andrea Tornielli, who has covered the Vatican for many years, first reported the news Tuesday.

The Vatican spokesman, the Rev. Federico Lombardi, and the Vatican office studying the case for John Paul's sainthood both refused to comment on the matter when questioned by CNN Wednesday.

But if the miracle is confirmed by the Catholic Church, John Paul II could be beatified as soon as April 2, the sixth anniversary of his death, Tornielli said.

That would be very fast in Vatican terms.

Other possible dates are May 18, John Paul's birthday, or October 16, the anniversary of the date he was elected pope in 1978, Tornielli said, suggesting the last date is most likely, to give the church time to prepare what will be an enormous event, even by the Vatican's standards.

- Newsdesk editor, The CNN Wire

Filed under: Belief • Bishops • Catholic Church • Christianity • Pope Benedict XVI • Vatican

soundoff (317 Responses)
  1. Reasonably Faithful

    I think he was a good man. Don't know about the sainthood thing. And to attribute a "miracle" to him just because someone prayed to (or through) him after he died sounds rather silly. Who could possibly say with a straight face that JPII was responsible for a woman's recovery? This is some pretty silly, hocus-pocus stuff... all this hyperbole aside.

    January 5, 2011 at 7:59 pm |
  2. Bosnm8

    Most of us read the same bibles and I want to know where it is in the KJV that its ok to pray to anyone other than god.

    January 5, 2011 at 7:52 pm |
    • Sam Houston

      When God's Son, Jesus Christ gave his model prayer in the gospels, he himself directed the prayer to "Our Father who art in heaven". Matthew 6:9,10. He also made clear that all worship should only go to his Father. Matthew 4:9,10

      January 5, 2011 at 8:08 pm |
    • Semi-Lapsed Catholic

      The KJV is a heresy. Any sect that relies on it is a heresy. Don't believe the lies that are spread in it.

      January 6, 2011 at 6:53 am |
    • CatholicMom


      The Bible is a Catholic Book, and the Catholic Church is the one which Jesus Christ founded. The Bible tells us that no prophesy is a matter of private interpretation. [2 Peter 1:20] So how are we to understand the Word? By hearing it. Yes, read the Bible, but if your interpretation is a private one and goes up against what Jesus Christ said [tradition] then you know you are wrong in your interpretation.

      Tradition as is: 1 Cor 11:2. Hold fast to Traditions I handed on to you…. How are you to know what these Traditions are? They were handed on to good men who would hold fast to them in the Church that Jesus Christ founded. Remember Jesus delegated all power to the Apostles and they handed on the Traditions down through history…[Mt 28:18-20]

      The Church tells us that our God is God of the living not the dead. We do not venerate the dead…the dead are ‘the cut off’ from Christ’s body of which we have become members through Baptism. The cut off are those who have died in their sin…they no longer can pray for us. But once a member of Christ’s body and if we remain in Him we [our soul] lives on in eternity. Our soul never just disappears in eternity but once ‘cut off’…we no longer are in communion with the members of Christ’s body. Making supplication for ALL the saints & for me….[Eph 6:18-19]

      We are to emulate Jesus Christ in EVERYTHING. We cannot go wrong then! [Mk 9:4] Jesus speaks to Elijah and Moses…saints for sure, right?!

      January 6, 2011 at 11:10 am |
  3. John

    I am totally disgusted with a Church that can canonize as a Saint someone who was responsible for the pedophile scandal policies. This man should be seen as a criminal, not a Saint! What is WRONG with these people????!!!!???

    January 5, 2011 at 7:46 pm |
    • elidude

      preach it, Brother!

      January 5, 2011 at 8:10 pm |
  4. Xandria

    I think it is absolutely hilarious how most of these comments are about pedophiles. Yes it is true there are some priests who are pedophiles and the church doesn't take care of the problem as well as they should, but we shouldn't count everyone in that picture. I don't claim to be a devout catholic but i do believe that Pope John Paul II did do good in this world. He's the only pope I truly think was a good person

    January 5, 2011 at 7:45 pm |
    • CyndyP

      If he covered up even one child being molested, he is not a candidate for sainthood. Had it been you or your child, perhaps you would not be so nonchalant.

      January 5, 2011 at 8:31 pm |
    • CatholicMom


      So you have read the lives of all the Popes down through history and Pope John Paul II is the only good one in your judgment?

      Let’s start with St. Peter, the first Pope; what didn’t you like about him? Was it that he displayed human traits…such as fear, lack of trust in Jesus, or his ability to say one thing and do another…

      ‘the list of popes catholic encyclopedia’ [google] will give you the list of popes down through history and info about each, just in case you read a non-Catholic version of the popes. Who should better know them than their own family? Always use the source that has the Truth and docu-ments to back it up.

      January 6, 2011 at 10:41 am |
  5. Donaldbain

    Yeah, making JPII a saint is a little off. They appear to be in quite a rush to beatify him and make him a saint. Despite his many good works, his complicity in the molestation scandal is self evident and should bar him from sainthood. We all make mistakes in life but that error of omission is a permanent stain on his existence. He was probably a good guy who ment well but as a member of the "no nookie" club, he must have discussed answering his primal urges with other priests, monks, cardinals and bishops. I can't help but wonder what some of them must have told him.

    January 5, 2011 at 7:38 pm |
  6. Joy

    The nun prayed to John Paul II. I guess the Catholic church failed to read the verse in the Bible that says, "Thou shalt have no other Gods before me."

    January 5, 2011 at 7:32 pm |
    • CatholicMom

      Did anyone ever ask you to pray for them? Did they think you were God? Did you ever pray for anyone? Did you think you were God?

      January 6, 2011 at 10:22 am |
  7. ree

    personally, i would rather see mother theresa maid a saint before jp2. she did more for her fellow man than he did. there are no such things as miracles, if there were we would see more of them taking place. the condition that this would is in right now proves it. How can "god" allow some of the things that are going on, sickness, hunger, war etc. i know it's the work of satan, yeah another myth. get a grip people. i was raised catholic but i do not attend church anymore, it has become a business all they want is money. i was told that i should donate at least 10% of my yearly salary to the church, i thought a donation was what you can afford so why are they telling me what to put in the envelope. i have been unemployed for almost 3 years, where is the church to help me out? religon is a joke!

    January 5, 2011 at 7:27 pm |
    • CatholicMom

      It sounds like your life has gone downhill ever since you pushed God out of it. Perhaps in these last 3 years you have been able to get help at a food shelf and other help from Catholic Charities? Seldom do these ‘help services’ say they are Catholic…such as Meals on Wheels…no mention of the ‘Catholic’, but if you are down and out, there is help out there for the needy. No, you may not think it is much but Catholic Charities is international and services are provided regardless of ethnicity, religion [or lack of it], or s3xual orientation.

      Sounds like you might have to sell your computer…plus you would gain your monthly bill back for necessities; but once you find your way back to the Truth…you will see your way back on line, too…………..don’t you think?

      January 6, 2011 at 10:14 am |
  8. Sam Houston

    Isn't it God who determines who are saints? Romans 8:16,17,33

    January 5, 2011 at 7:24 pm |
    • Joy

      Exactly! God probably has a good laugh every time the Catholic church 'makes' someone a saint.

      January 5, 2011 at 7:34 pm |
    • CatholicMom

      Sam Houston,

      Didn’t the Father send His Son, Jesus, with power to set up His Kingdom on earth? Yes, read your whole Bible.

      When Jesus had accomplished what He came to do to He sent the Apostle’s out on a mission which He commanded them to do and it continues today. Jesus promised the Apostles that He would send the Paraclete to guide, guard, and bring them into remembrance of all He told them and to bring them into the fullness of Truth of which they could not bear just yet.

      Jesus’ promises are good! Today His Church is still thriving after 2000 years because He promised that evil would not prevail against Her.

      So, you see, the power given the Apostles thrives today in His Church. He did not found His Church to have it die out when the Apostles died….His command to go out and teach and Baptize the world still stands today. The teaching continues today and so does the Baptizing.

      The fullness of Truth continues to flow to the Church and out to us just as He promised.

      Today you may learn to accept His Truth about Sainthood, the Communion of Saints. The Catechism of the Catholic Church is excellent in explaining this Truth.

      January 6, 2011 at 9:59 am |
  9. sarita gonazels

    OK – so how can we justify making a pope a saint? making someone who tells people (mainly africans) that wearing condoms won't prevent aids. what a huge horrible lie. the popes are responsible for millions of deaths around the world, solely in the name of catholicism. yeah – something to be real proud of. spreading lies and killing people. not to mention the hundreds/thousands of little boys he most surely molested in his years. disgusting that the world reveres these freaks. he's probably burning in a pit of hell right now for his crimes against humanity – and we're thinking saint? whatever.

    January 5, 2011 at 7:23 pm |
    • elidude

      Wow, I wish I'd read your post before I did a briefer, less eloquent rant. You go, girl!

      January 5, 2011 at 8:12 pm |
    • elidude

      aaaaaaaaaannnnnddddd, if you start a protest, I'm sooooooo there!!!

      January 5, 2011 at 8:13 pm |
  10. Jerad

    The whole Sainthood aspect of Catholicism is leftover from pagan Rome. The Roman Senate would vote to declare someone a deity (usually an emperor). Catholics do not portray Saints as deities but the concept is still a carry-over from the pre-Christian practice. It's strange because they pray to Saints, which would seem to go against the teachings of the bible. Yeah, I know they also claim that they don't actually pray to the Saints but instead ask them to intercede on their behalf but that's just splitting hairs.

    January 5, 2011 at 7:20 pm |
  11. snowboarder

    from what i have read john was an incredibly intelligent man, but i can not understand his connection with the catholic faith. the ritual that is catholicism is startling and terrifying. i have stood in the vatican and can not understand how the church could steal so much from it's people to build such egotistical, grandiose crap.

    January 5, 2011 at 7:15 pm |
  12. John

    What a crock all this is! Sainthood... miracles... magic!!! How do you prove such a thing? You don't, of course, but it's part of Catholic "schtick!" Imagine, having the chutzpa to even contemplate canonizing Pope Pius Xll, a pope known to have made "sweetheart deals" with Hitler!!!

    January 5, 2011 at 7:00 pm |
    • Dee

      Hey John at one time everybody was doing what they could to stop Hitler - the British, the French and church officials. When the realized that wasn't going to work they all tured their backs on him - we perhaps except for Wallis & Edward but we won't go there...

      January 5, 2011 at 7:11 pm |
  13. hanna

    I find it amusing how many atheists are commenting on this story and how many people brought up the priests molesting children subject. I was raised Catholic but don't practice anymore. I'm in no means an atheist, I just don't classify myself in a certain religion.
    I think classifying him as a saint would be good since he was adored by many people. That's just my opinion though.

    January 5, 2011 at 6:58 pm |
    • sarita gonazels

      so, just because people like someone they should be a saint? such low standards you have!

      January 5, 2011 at 7:25 pm |
    • Frogist

      @sarita: I vote Yoda for sainthood! C'mon, do you know anyone who doesn'tlike Yoda? And he had the force. Surely that's some kind of miracle.

      January 6, 2011 at 10:23 am |
  14. Dan's girl

    if the Pope was aware of the atrocities –the abuses of young children by priests then NO, he should not be moved towards sainthood. That would be another religious injustice.

    January 5, 2011 at 6:49 pm |
  15. nick2

    Who performs miracles ? God, or man ? Its a rhetorical question because if you believe in God, then only God can make miracles. To attribute this to a man, is encouraging a sort of deification – simple people indulge in saint wosrhip, and the Catholic Church actually encourages it. They call it 'intercession'. As if a real God needed an introduction from any human being. Absolute baloney.

    January 5, 2011 at 6:41 pm |
    • CatholicMom


      Do you ever pray for anyone? Does anyone ever pray for you? If they do or you do, does this mean you are attributing God’s power to them or yourself? Of course not! But anyone can ask God for ‘this needed blessing’ through Jesus Christ; Jesus has been known to provide miracles to people because of someone else’s faith.

      If we are Baptized we are members of Christ’s Body. No one is cut off from this Body ‘as a branch from the vine’ except by the Father who is the judge of our soul. If our sins are such that we are cut off, we are no longer members of Christ’s Body and will spend eternity separated/cut-off from Christ. All members can pray for each other and intercede on other’s behalf. All prayers are made to our One Mediator, Jesus Christ.

      This is called the Communion of Saints in the Catholic Church.

      January 5, 2011 at 11:14 pm |
  16. oracle_guy_from_Delphi

    Do saints get special treatment in hell where JP II surly resides?

    January 5, 2011 at 6:38 pm |
  17. Ieat

    i'm tired of the references to pedophiles. Yes there are Catholic priests that are pedophiles, but it doesn't mean they all are. I have met plenty of priests who are absolutely caring, loving and trustworthy people. Don't group them all together as 1.

    January 5, 2011 at 6:38 pm |
    • Dee

      Sadly studies show (look it up) that you have a bigger chance of being molested by your Scout leader, your teacher or your relative. 4% of priests tare pedophiles, its appalling but pedophiles are sick people who will do whatever they can - even taking on a faith - to get to children. The reason you hear more about Catholic pedophile priests is because it is, for hte most part, one religion whereas there are 40,000 + Protestant religions so you can't really narrow in but they are there, pedophiles are everywhere children are. Sometimes just think about all the good the rest of the 96% of priests do, the homes, the hospitals and the chairities the Catholic church builds and pays for (and you don't even have to join to avail yourself of those services ),.

      January 5, 2011 at 7:04 pm |
    • shinden58

      I won't group them all as one, but I think it is only appropriate to hold the church hierarchy responsible for allowing the abuse to continue. The church was more worried about saving face than protecting kids.

      January 5, 2011 at 9:57 pm |
    • civiloutside

      The difference, Dee, is that the Boy Scouts, your local school district, or your family aren't going to be held up as representatives of supreme goodness of moral character if they help cover up the abuse and even help the abusers find fresh and unsuspecting victims by moving them around without warning the new populations of their crimes.

      January 7, 2011 at 11:34 am |
  18. PJ

    The old perv protected so many pedophiles it is truly a joke to cannonize him. Just shows how low the Church as sunk.

    January 5, 2011 at 6:34 pm |
    • Dan's girl

      if the pope knew of the abuses and allowed it to continue, he is just as guilty.

      January 5, 2011 at 6:51 pm |
  19. CK

    There are no saints & never has been. And these miracles are the dumbest beliefs I know of (if I may end a sentence in a preposition.) I cannot understand how the human race got caught up in these myths! Doesn't anyone think for themselves? Or read some history of the records? There have been gods since the beginning of any record keeping at all. Most of these gods died on a "cross," rose from the dead, went to heaven and returned. BUT, funny thing: Not one person ever saw this. And, there were historians around when Jesus was "supposed" to have been born. Why did no one record this event? Because it didn't happen. Religion is the root of all evil.

    January 5, 2011 at 6:32 pm |
  20. Moose961

    @reality- Are we supposed to be impressed at your "intelligence" since all you can do is cut and paste the thoughts of others and pass them off as your own? LOL!!!

    January 5, 2011 at 6:28 pm |
    • Reality

      Jesus was an illiterate, Jewish, peasant/carpenter/simple preacher man who suffered from hallucinations and who has been characterized anywhere from the Messiah from Nazareth to a mythical character from mythical Nazareth to a ma-mzer from Nazareth (Professor Bruce Chilton, in his book Rabbi Jesus). An-alyses of Jesus’ life by many contemporary NT scholars (e.g. Professors Crossan, Borg and Fredriksen, ) via the NT and related doc-uments have concluded that only about 30% of Jesus' sayings and ways noted in the NT were authentic. The rest being embellishments (e.g. miracles)/hallucinations made/had by the NT authors to impress various Christian, Jewish and Pagan se-cts.

      The 30% of the NT that is "authentic Jesus" like everything in life was borrowed/plagiarized and/or improved from those who came before. In Jesus' case, it was the ways and sayings of the Babylonians, Greeks, Persians, Egyptians, Hit-ti-tes, Canaanites, OT, John the Baptizer and possibly the ways and sayings of traveling Greek Cynics.


      For added "pizz-azz", Catholic theologians divided god the singularity into three persons and invented atonement as an added guilt trip for the "pew people" to go along with this trinity of overseers. By doing so, they made god the padre into god the "fil-icider".

      Current RCC problems:

      Pedo-ph-iliac priests, an all-male, mostly white hierarchy, atonement theology and original sin!!!!

      Luther, Calvin, Joe Smith, Henry VIII, Wesley, Roger Williams, the Great “Babs” et al, founders of Christian-based religions or combination religions also suffered from the belief in/hallucinations of "pretty wingie thingie" visits and "prophecies" for profits analogous to the myths of Catholicism (resurrections, apparitions, ascensions and immacu-late co-nceptions).

      Current problems:

      Adu-lterous preachers, "propheteering/ profiteering" evangelicals and atonement theology,


      1. Historical Jesus Theories, earlychristianwritings.com/theories.htm – the names of many of the contemporary historical Jesus scholars and the ti-tles of their over 100 books on the subject.
      2. Early Christian Writings, earlychristianwritings.com/
      – a list of early Christian doc-uments to include the year of publication–
      30-60 CE Passion Narrative
      40-80 Lost Sayings Gospel Q
      50-60 1 Thessalonians
      50-60 Philippians
      50-60 Galatians
      50-60 1 Corinthians
      50-60 2 Corinthians
      50-60 Romans
      50-60 Philemon
      50-80 Colossians
      50-90 Signs Gospel
      50-95 Book of Hebrews
      50-120 Didache
      50-140 Gospel of Thomas
      50-140 Oxyrhynchus 1224 Gospel
      50-200 Sophia of Jesus Christ
      65-80 Gospel of Mark
      70-100 Epistle of James
      70-120 Egerton Gospel
      70-160 Gospel of Peter
      70-160 Secret Mark
      70-200 Fayyum Fragment
      70-200 Testaments of the Twelve Patriarchs
      73-200 Mara Bar Serapion
      80-100 2 Thessalonians
      80-100 Ephesians
      80-100 Gospel of Matthew
      80-110 1 Peter
      80-120 Epistle of Barnabas
      80-130 Gospel of Luke
      80-130 Acts of the Apostles
      80-140 1 Clement
      80-150 Gospel of the Egyptians
      80-150 Gospel of the Hebrews
      80-250 Christian Sibyllines
      90-95 Apocalypse of John
      90-120 Gospel of John
      90-120 1 John
      90-120 2 John
      90-120 3 John
      90-120 Epistle of Jude
      93 Flavius Josephus
      100-150 1 Timothy
      100-150 2 Timothy
      100-150 T-itus
      100-150 Apocalypse of Peter
      100-150 Secret Book of James
      100-150 Preaching of Peter
      100-160 Gospel of the Ebionites
      100-160 Gospel of the Nazoreans
      100-160 Shepherd of Hermas
      100-160 2 Peter
      110-140 Polycarp to the Philippians
      110-140 Papias
      110-160 Oxyrhynchus 840 Gospel
      110-160 Traditions of Matthias
      111-112 Pliny the Younger
      115 Suetonius
      115 Tacitus
      120-130 Quadratus of Athens
      120-130 Apology of Aristides
      120-140 Basilides
      120-140 Naassene Fragment
      120-160 Valentinus
      120-180 Apocryphon of John
      120-180 Gospel of Mary
      120-180 Dialogue of the Savior
      120-180 Gospel of the Savior
      120-180 2nd Apocalypse of James
      120-180 Trimorphic Protennoia
      130-140 Marcion
      130-150 Aristo of Pella
      130-160 Epiphanes On Righteousness
      130-160 Ophite Diagrams
      130-160 2 Clement
      130-170 Gospel of Judas
      130-200 Epistle of Mathetes to Diognetus
      140-150 Epistula Apostolorum
      140-160 Ptolemy
      140-160 Isidore
      140-170 Fronto
      140-170 Infancy Gospel of James
      140-170 Infancy Gospel of Thomas
      140-180 Gospel of Truth
      150-160 Martyrdom of Polycarp
      150-160 Justin Martyr
      150-180 Excerpts of Theodotus
      150-180 Heracleon
      150-200 Ascension of Isaiah
      150-200 Acts of Peter
      150-200 Acts of John
      150-200 Acts of Paul
      150-200 Acts of Andrew
      150-225 Acts of Peter and the Twelve
      150-225 Book of Thomas the Contender
      150-250 Fifth and Sixth Books of Esra
      150-300 Authoritative Teaching
      150-300 Coptic Apocalypse of Paul
      150-300 Discourse on the Eighth and Ninth
      150-300 Melchizedek
      150-400 Acts of Pilate
      -180 Apelles
      160-180 Julius Cassianus
      160-250 Octavius of Minucius Felix
      161-180 Acts of Carpus
      165-175 Melito of Sardis
      165-175 Hegesippus
      165-175 Dionysius of Corinth
      165-175 Lucian of Samosata
      167 Marcus Aurelius
      170-175 Diatessaron
      170-200 Dura-Europos Gospel Harmony
      170-200 Muratorian Canon
      170-200 Treatise on the Resurrection
      170-220 Letter of Peter to Philip
      175-180 Athenagoras of Athens
      175-185 Irenaeus of Lyons
      175-185 Rhodon
      175-185 Theophilus of Caesarea
      175-190 Galen
      178 Celsus
      178 Letter from Vienna and Lyons
      180 Passion of the Scillitan Martyrs
      180-185 Theophilus of Antioch
      180-185 Acts of Apollonius
      180-220 Bardesanes
      180-220 Kerygmata Petrou
      180-230 Hippolytus of Rome
      180-250 1st Apocalypse of James
      180-250 Gospel of Philip
      182-202 Clement of Alexandria
      185-195 Maximus of Jerusalem
      185-195 Polycrates of Ephesus
      188-217 Talmud
      189-199 Victor I
      190-210 Pantaenus
      193 Anonymous Anti-Montanist
      193-216 Inscription of Abercius
      197-220 Tertullian
      200-210 Serapion of Antioch
      200-210 Apollonius
      200-220 Caius
      200-220 Philostratus
      200-225 Acts of Thomas
      200-250 Didascalia
      200-250 Books of Jeu
      200-300 Pistis Sophia
      200-300 Coptic Apocalypse of Peter
      203 Acts of Perpetua and Felicitas
      203-250 Origen
      3. Historical Jesus Studies, faithfutures.org/HJstudies.html,
      – "an extensive and constantly expanding literature on historical research into the person and cultural context of Jesus of Nazareth"
      4. Jesus Database, faithfutures.org/JDB/intro.html–"The JESUS DATABASE is an online annotated inventory of the traditions concerning the life and teachings of Jesus that have survived from the first three centuries of the Common Era. It includes both canonical and extra-canonical materials, and is not limited to the traditions found within the Christian New Testament."
      5. Josephus on Jesus mtio.com/articles/bissar24.htm
      6. The Jesus Seminar, mystae.com/restricted/reflections/messiah/seminar.html#Criteria
      7. Writing the New Testament- mystae.com/restricted/reflections/messiah/testament.html
      8. Health and Healing in the Land of Israel By Joe Zias
      9. Economics in First Century Palestine, K.C. Hanson and D. E. Oakman, Palestine in the Time of Jesus, Fortress Press, 1998.
      10. 7. The Gnostic Jesus
      (Part One in a Two-Part Series on Ancient and Modern Gnosticism)
      by Douglas Groothuis: equip.org/free/DG040-1.htm
      11. The interpretation of the Bible in the Church, Pontifical Biblical Commission
      Presented on March 18, 1994
      12. The Jesus Database- newer site:
      13. Jesus Database with the example of Supper and Eucharist:
      14. Josephus on Jesus by Paul Maier:
      15. The Journal of Higher Criticism with links to articles on the Historical Jesus:
      16. The Greek New Testament: laparola.net/greco/
      17. Diseases in the Bible:
      18. Religion on Line (6000 articles on the history of religion, churches, theologies,
      theologians, ethics, etc.
      19. The Jesus Seminarians and their search for NT authenticity:
      20. The New Testament Gateway – Internet NT ntgateway.com/
      21. Writing the New Testament- existing copies, oral tradition etc.
      22. The Search for the Historic Jesus by the Jesus Seminarians:
      23. Jesus Decoded by Msgr. Francis J. Maniscalco (Da Vinci Code review)jesusdecoded.com/introduction.php
      24. JD Crossan's scriptural references for his book the Historical Jesus separated into time periods: faithfutures.org/Jesus/Crossan1.rtf
      25. JD Crossan's conclusions about the authencity of most of the NT based on the above plus the conclusions of other NT exegetes in the last 200 years:
      26. Common Sayings from Thomas's Gospel and the Q Gospel: faithfutures.org/Jesus/Crossan3.rtf
      27. Early Jewish Writings- Josephus and his books by t-itle with the complete translated work in English :earlyjewishwritings.com/josephus.html
      28. Luke and Josephus- was there a connection?
      29. NT and beyond time line:
      30. St. Paul's Time line with discussion of important events:
      31. See http://www.amazon.com for a list of JD Crossan's books and those of the other Jesus Seminarians: Reviews of said books are included and selected pages can now be viewed on Amazon. Some books can be found on-line at Google Books.
      32. Father Edward Schillebeeckx's words of wisdom as found in his books.
      33. The books of the following : Professors Marcus Borg, Paula Fredriksen, Elaine Pagels, Karen Armstrong and Bishop NT Wright.
      34. Father Raymond Brown's An Introduction to the New Testament, Doubleday, NY, 1977, 878 pages, with Nihil obstat and Imprimatur.
      35. Luke Timothy Johnson's book The Real Jesus

      January 5, 2011 at 11:18 pm |
    • CatholicMom


      You stated that Jesus was an illiterate, simple man who suffered hallucinations… Clearly one third of the world’s people believe He is God. Of all the believers of a religion, this is the largest group that believes He is God. Then, the next largest group believes He was a prophet…so well over ½ the world’s people believe in Him but not in the vain that you do.

      Church Fathers and Doctors are a good source of Truth.

      January 6, 2011 at 5:49 pm |
    • Reality


      Don't look now but the secularists, agnostics and atheists are catching up!


      Religion Adherents

      Christianity 2.1 billion
      Islam 1.5 billion
      Irreligious/agnostic/atheism 1.1 billion
      Hinduism 900 million
      Chinese traditional religion 394 million
      Buddhism 376 million
      Animist religions 300 million
      African traditional/diasporic religions 100 million
      Sikhism 23 million
      Juche 19 million
      Spiritism 15 million
      Judaism 14 million
      Baha'i 7 million
      Jainism 4.2 million
      Shinto 4 million
      Cao Dai 4 million
      Zoroastrianism 2.6 million
      Tenrikyo 2 million
      Neo-Paganism 1 million
      Unitarian Universalism 800,000
      Rastafari Movement 600,000

      And labeling yourself Catholic does not mean much these days when for example almost 70% of Catholics violate the Fourth Commandment every week. So adjusting the above figures for Christians and Catholics who do not practice their religion, non-believers and doubters now outnumber the followers of the iliterate, simple, preacher man aka Jesus.

      Then there is that major "disease" of Christians and Muslims i.e. the Three B Syndrome, Bred, Born and Brainwashed in their religions. But the cures are easy!! Just for you CatholicMom:

      Saving CatholicMom from the Resurrection Con: (almost rhymes)

      From that famous passage: In 1 Corinthians 15 St. Paul reasoned, "If Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith."

      Even now Catholic/Christian professors of theology are questioning the bodily resurrection of the simple, preacher man aka Jesus.

      To wit;

      From a major Catholic university's theology grad school white-board notes:

      "Heaven is a Spirit state or spiritual reality of union with God in love, without earthly – earth bound distractions.
      Jesus and Mary's bodies are therefore not in Heaven.

      Most believe that it to mean that the personal spiritual self that survives death is in continuity with the self we were while living on earth as an embodied person.

      Again, the physical Resurrection (meaning a resuscitated corpse returning to life), Ascension (of Jesus' crucified corpse), and Assumption (Mary's corpse) into heaven did not take place.

      The Ascension symbolizes the end of Jesus' earthly ministry and the beginning of the Church.

      Only Luke's Gospel records it. The Assumption ties Jesus' mission to Pentecost and missionary activity of Jesus' followers The Assumption has multiple layers of symbolism, some are related to Mary's special role as "Christ bearer" (theotokos). It does not seem fitting that Mary, the body of Jesus' Virgin-Mother (another biblically based symbol found in Luke 1) would be derived by worms upon her death. Mary's assumption also shows God's positive regard, not only for Christ's male body, but also for female bodies." "

      "In three controversial Wednesday Audiences, Pope John Paul II pointed out that the essential characteristic of heaven, hell or purgatory is that they are states of being of a spirit (angel/demon) or human soul, rather than places, as commonly perceived and represented in human language. This language of place is, according to the Pope, inadequate to describe the realities involved, since it is tied to the temporal order in which this world and we exist. In this he is applying the philosophical categories used by the Church in her theology and saying what St. Thomas Aquinas said long before him."

      The Vatican quickly embellished this story with a lot CYAP.

      Of course, we all know that angels are really mythical "pretty wingie talking thingies".

      With respect to rising from the dead, we also have this account:

      An added note: As per R.B. Stewart in his introduction to the recent book, The Resurrection of Jesus, Crossan and Wright in Dialogue, ( Professors Crossan and Wright are On Faith panelists).

      "Reimarus (1774-1778) posits that Jesus became sidetracked by embracing a political position, sought to force God's hand and that he died alone deserted by his disciples. What began as a call for repentance ended up as a misguided attempt to usher in the earthly political kingdom of God. After Jesus' failure and death, his disciples stole his body and declared his resurrection in order to maintain their financial security and ensure themselves some standing."

      So where are the bones? As per Professor Crossan's analyses in his many books, the body of Jesus would have ended up in the mass graves of the crucified, eaten by wild dogs, with lime in a shallow grave, or under a pile of stones.

      January 6, 2011 at 6:31 pm |
    • Reality

      Oops, Keep Holy the Lord's Day is the Third Commandment for Catholics and Lutherans. It is the Fourth Commandment for other Christians and for Jews.

      January 6, 2011 at 6:37 pm |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.