General view of a mass for the canonisation of a nun from Kerala named Marian Thresia, 19th-century British cardinal John Henry Newman, a Swiss laywoman, an Italian nun and another nun known as the 'Mother Teresa of Brazil', at the Vatican, October 13, 2019.
'With God in heaven'
The Pope declares somebody a saint only if the person practices 'heroic virtue' and, in the words of the Vatican 'is with God in heaven'. One of those is Mariam Thresia, the founder of the Congregation of the Sisters of the Holy Family in Kerala's Thrissur.
Pope leads the way
Pope Francis leads a mass for the canonisation ceremony at the Vatican on October 13, 2019.
'Holiness and virtue'
The sainthood process cannot start until at least five years after the death of the relevant person. After the grant of a waiver, the bishop of the diocese where the person died can open an investigation into the life of the individual. This is to see whether the person lived a life of holiness and virtue.
The Congregation for the Causes of Saints scrutinises the evidence of the candidate's holiness and their work. After their approval, the candidature is passed on for consideration to the Pope. Before canonisation, 'beatification' or the attribution of a miracle to the prayers made to the individual after their death is undertaken.
'Canonisation' is the final step in declaring somebody a saint. For this, a second miracle needs to be attributed to the prayers made to the candidate after their beatification.
A priest gives instructions to other clergymen ahead of the mass for the canonisation of five people at the Vatican.