"Nothing can stop" canonization of controversial cardinal

Archbishop of Zagreb Josip Bozanić has said during Easter Mass that "nobody and nothing" can stop the canonization of Alojzije Stepinac.

Source: Tanjug

The Croatian Catholic dignitary continued to say that it was "the enemies of Christianity" who for decades tried to eradicate the very mention of the name of Cardinal Stepinac - but now "no one and nothing can stop the Church on the road to his canonization."

After the Second World War, Stepinac was, among other things, convicted for cooperating with the top of the fascist Croatian regime, the Ustashas. He died in 1960 while under house arrest. Croatian historiography, however, now shows him mostly in a positive light, as "a righteous person and a victim of historical circumstances."

The Zagreb daily Jutarnji List quoted sources from the Vatican who said the controversial Croatian cardinal, who has already been beatified, could soon be declared a saint, but that this will probably happen in the fall rather than in May, as has been expected.

The Hina news agency reported that during his Easter Mass address, Bozanić also noted that "the systematic humiliation of the victim of the Croatian defenders" which, according to him, has been taking place recently, "testifies that immense potential lies in them for Croatia's exit from the crisis."

"What does the fear of the defenders, who built the homeland with blood, tell us about the real power of existing structures?," Bozanić was quoted as saying.

Speaking of Pope John Paul II, who is also to be canonized along with John XXIII, Božanić said he "proved his closeness to the Croats with three visits to Croatia."

"In decisive times he did a lot for our national independence and international recognition, and therefore became more than a friend, he became the pope of Croatia's hope," said Bozanić.

It was Pope John Paul II who in October 1998 beatified Alojzije Stepinac.


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