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Monday, February 20, 2012

San Pedro de Cebu: Pedro Calungsod will be the second Filipino to become a saint

The Vatican has formally announced last Saturday morning (Vatican time) about the canonization of  Pedro Calungsod, the second Filipino to become a saint, which will be on October 21, 2012. The announcement has been made after the installation of 22 new cardinals by Pope Benedict XVI during liturgical rites held at St. Peter's Basilica. San Lorenzo Ruiz de Manila  was the first Filipino saint canonized 25 years ago by the late Pope John Paul II, who is also now a candidate for sainthood.

Pedro Calungsod, a young cathechist, together with the now Blessed Diego Luis de San Vitores, a Spanish Jesuit priest, became martyrs when they were attacked by the natives in Guam in 1762 while they were on their way to a hostile village to do baptismal rites. They were sent to Guam from the Philippines to spread Christianity. The natives armed with spears and bolos, attacked father Diego first and killed him on the spot and then turned towards Pedro and ordered him to give up his faith. He could have ran away and saved his life but the young cathechist chose to die for his faith instead.

San Lorenzo Ruiz de Manila, the first Filipino saint, suffered the same fate when he died for his faith in Nagazaki, Japan. He worked as a calligrapher for the Dominican parish of Binondo, Manila before he was sent to Japan together with the missionaries to spread Christianity. The canonization is the final step towards sainthood from which a candidate must undergo the beatification and canonization processes. Miraculous healings attributed to the intercession of these candidates are the main requirements.


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