Should Catholics venerate saints who were canonized by Eastern Orthodox churches?

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Full Question

Should Catholics venerate saints who were canonized by Eastern Orthodox churches?

Answer

It is possible for Catholics to admire the Christian witness of those recognized as saints by Eastern Orthodox churches. It is also possible for Catholics to learn from the lives and writings of apparently holy people of other Christian faith traditions. However, I do not recommend giving such people the honor Catholics accord to those who have been recognized to be saints by the Catholic Church.

Canonization by the pope is an infallible statement by the Church that a particular person definitely is in heaven and therefore is worthy to be given public honor by Catholics. Although the salvation of non-Catholics is hoped for, we have no such absolute knowledge that those “canonized” by non-Catholic churches indeed are in heaven.


Michelle Arnold









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  1. Patrick Gannon Reply

    “Although the salvation of non-Catholics is hoped for, we have no such absolute knowledge that those “canonized” by non-Catholic churches indeed are in heaven."
    .
    Actually “we have no such absolute knowledge" that there even is a heaven, do we?
    .
    I thought the Pope indicated that atheists could go to heaven too – not that any would want to. There’s that whole loss of free will thing (thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven – meaning God’s will, not ours). We will be zombies in heaven without free will, so who cares? One can see that this would be required, for what decent human being could be happy in heaven knowing billions of people are suffering in eternal torment – many for the sin of failing to be born to Catholic parents. The threat that one must be a Catholic to be “saved" is cruelly repeated and emphasized here. How well I remember the childhood chants, “Catholics, Catholics, ring the bell. Protestants, Protestants, go to Hell. The RCC and its god are all rather vicious, aren’t they?

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