OK huge day!! For again in just a few short day I am up from early morning till dawn watching big events in Europe. First the Royal Wedding and now the huge John Paul the II beautification . Since we have been talking Royals this week the British Royal Family is represented today by Prince Richard, Duke of Gloucester
The Vatican seems to be a master of lowering expectations. There was some talk that because of the economy, the royal wedding, price gouging in Rome etc etc that the crowds for the beatification might be a smaller than expected. Needless to say THAT DID NOT HAPPEN. Early estimates show crowds of at least a million.
Here are some resources and overviews. See John Paul II is blessed! via the Catholic Herald. They also have a live blog of the events you can review at John Paul II beatification: live blog .
The Anchoress had a live blog which included a rather fun account of a turf war she had with some Polish nuns over a prime piece of Vatican real estate this morning. She also is running a link she is updating with some raw video. The Vatican has both the vigil and today's events on video here . (translations available).
A blog run by religious has done a translation from the Latin To English of the Rite of Beatification which is quite interesting. Here is the part of the big moment:
The Cardinal Agostino Vallini, Vicar General of His Holiness for the Diocese of Rome, approaches the chair of the Holy Father, with the Postulator, and asks that the he proceeds with the Beatification of the Servant of God, John Paul II:
“Most Holy Father, the Vicar General of Your Holiness for the Diocese of Rome humbly asks Your Holiness to include among the number of blessed the Venerable Servant of God John Paul II, Pope.”
Afterward, the reading of the Biography of the Servant of God (p.11 in Mass Booklet). Then all stand, and the Holy Father pronounces the Formula of Beatification (p.76):
“We, welcoming the desire of Our Brother Agostino Cardinale Vallini, Our Vicar General for the Diocese of Rome, of many other Brothers in the Episcopate and of many of the faithful, after having had the review of Congregation of the Causes of the Saints, with Our Apostolic Authority we grant that the Venerable Servant of God John Paul II, Pope, from now on will be called Blessed and that his feast might be celebrated in the places according to the rules established by law, every year on the 22nd of October.
In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.”;
The relics of now-Blessed John Paul II are brought to the Altar.
The Vicar General of His Holiness for the Diocese of Rome thanks the Holy Father:
“Most Blessed Father, the Vicar General of Your Holiness for the Diocese of Rome thanks Your Holiness for having today proclaimed Blessed the Venerable Servant of God John Paul II, Pope.” (At this point, we can officially refer to JPII as ‘Blessed’)
The Cardinal and the Postulator exchange an embrace of peace with the Holy Father.
I will try to put this in the order of events:
First we have the Vigil last night and basically huge amounts of prayers and adoration that occurred by many (especially youth ) that occurred till dawn. In other words a true Vigil like we see in the Church Fathers.
For the night before that was something to watch via online Whispers in the Loggia , who is there and will be moderating the big events has many good posts. See his post from the vigil activities last night:
The World Arrives... and "White Night" Begins
"The Holy Father Blessed the Sky"... And Tomorrow's Forecast Changed
"He Believed, He Loved" -- On Beatification Eve, Recalling "Our Beloved Pontiff, our Prophet of Hope"
"Mary, Teach Us to Build Up the World": For and From JP2, B16's "Ave Maria"
"He Sees Us and He Blesses Us...."
The UK Catholic Herald is on the scene . They have some post on the Vigil. See Pilgrims remember John Paul II at vigil. In front of a packed crowd last night at the Vigil the Cardinal gave a reflection on John Paul the II. From the Herald again see Cardinal Vallini’s reflections on John Paul II: full text
Today of course is also Divine Mercy Sunday and Divine Mercy Devotion!! which was quite close to John Paul the II 's heart. John Paul of course died on this Feast.
John Allen ,who has done several good pieces for this week, had a article over at NCR on why the Divine Mercy was so big to John Paul II and is such a big part of today. See Beatification Q&A #4: What’s the Divine Mercy connection?. On a related note see his piece on what kind of "Saint" once we get there that the future Church will see as to John Paul the II. See John Allen: Beatification stirs ferment over John Paul's legacy .
We get to the beautiful Mass of Beatification and of course the the Papal Homily. See the full text here at also via Whispers at "Man Is the Way of the Church, and Christ Is the Way of Man"
Whoa look at these 20 aerial photos. Big CROWDS to say the least. I might save some of these . So pretty.