Blessed John Paul’s relic placed in chapel of children’s hospital

VATICAN CITY — Anticipating the first feast of Blessed John Paul II Oct. 22, Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, Vatican secretary of state, presided over a ceremony this afternoon for “the translation” (the formal moving) of a reliquary containing one of the vials of late pope’s blood.

A reliquary with one vial of Blessed John Paul's blood was carried in procession during a thanksgiving Mass after his beatification. (CNS/Paul Haring)

The ceremony took place in the chapel of the Vatican-owned Bambino Gesu Hospital on the Janiculum Hill above the Vatican. The vial, which had been in the custody of the Daughters of Charity who work at the hospital, was placed alongside the altar in the chapel of the pediatric hospital.

The transfer of the reliquary will permit its “veneration by the small patients, their families and the healthcare workers at the hospital,” said a statement from Bambino Gesu.

A reliquary with a vial of Pope John Paul’s blood was given to Pope Benedict XVI May 1 during the Mass for the beatification of the late pope. At the time, the Vatican explained that four vials of blood were drawn from Pope John Paul during the final stage of his illness. The vials were sent to Bambino Gesu Hospital in case the ailing pope needed a transfusion.

No transfusion was ever needed, and after the pope’s death April 2, 2005, two of the vials went to his personal secretary, Cardinal Stanislaw Dziwisz of Krakow, Poland, and the other two remained in the custody of the Daughters of Charity, the Vatican said.

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7 Responses to Blessed John Paul’s relic placed in chapel of children’s hospital

  1. Bro. Ringo says:

    I’m at a loss…what exactly is the point of a relic? I’ve not heard how effective the relic of this blood has been in Mexico so far;is it a sort of slow-acting cure for what ails Mexican society? Frankly,the idea strikes me as bizarre in the extreme;a sort of throwback to medieval superstitions unworthy of true faith in our Savior and the power of healing and holy living attendant upon that faith.As a Spirit-Filled,born-again servant of God,I find catholicism baffling and unsatisfying as a belief system;for that matter,I’m not overly impressed with any man-centered “ism”under any name.Catholics claim that they worship their popes,but stories like this do little to dispel tha notion.

  2. George says:

    Relics and the notions surrounding them are interesting indeed as are the notions surrounding saints.

    In a nutshell, the relic of a saint (or in this case Blessed) serves as a strong physical connection to that saint and what they did in their lives for God. Relics serve as testimonies and monuments to the lives of holiness these people brought to us by the grace of God. Christianity and the concepts of relics are inseparable. In the earliest of days of the Church, Masses (or if you prefer “Services”) were said over the graves of martyrs, the very first saints. And still today, Catholic and Orthodox Churches retain relics, especially those of martyrs, in their altars.

    Lastly, we do not worship or Popes, or any Saints for that matter. Worship, as most every Christian confession professes, belongs to God alone. When we remember our Saints, and honor them as we do in relics and ceremonies, it is an honoring of what God accomplished through them, of the love and grace they were able to bring to the world by God! It is a wonderful thing, and now that they sing praises to our God in heaven, it is right that we should remember them as our special heavenly patrons.

  3. Adam Birchenough says:

    Thus St. Jerome says (“Ad Riparium”, i, P.L., XXII, 907): “We do not worship, we do not adore [non colimus, non adoramus], for fear that we should bow down to the creature rather than to the Creator, but we venerate [honoramus] the relics of the martyrs in order the better to adore Him whose martyrs they are.”

    Here is the whole answer to your question-

  4. William Beuck says:

    I look forward to this first great feast day in honour of Blessed John Paul II. I feel so honoured to have know this man during my life time What a great leater of the church and most of a great priest. This feast was also my dear mother’s birthday. In fact she would have been 90 years old this year. Eternal rest on her and also on Blessed John Paul II May they both rest in peace. Amen

  5. Duane Lamers says:

    Vials of blood having been gathered in the usual fashion and later exhibited, yes. Exhibiting portions of limbs or cutting out a portion of the body in order to slice and dice further and distribute ’round the world, NO! I hope the carvers hadn’t gone after Bl. Angelo Roncalli.
    Allegedly, the Poles wanted Woijtya’s heart to expose. Enough already!

  6. Daniel says:

    Veneration means adoration – reverence – respect – or worship.
    Growing up in a Catholic family – (one of the original families who established Sainte Anne de Beaupre’ in Quebec Canada), I recall Exodus 20: verse 4 “You shall not make yourself a carved image, any likeness of anything that is in heaven above or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water beneath the earth.
    We have a jealous God , He is our LORD who wishes for us to keep His commandments. Please – please reconsider your steps and please keep the Word of God above all else. He truly loves all of us and does not want to allow any destractions, especially in this season of time.

  7. Mitch Finley says:

    Daniel, as defined by the Catholic Church, not to mention any dictionary, “veneration” is most definitely NOT the same as worship. Veneration is in the same ball park as the “honor” you would show a photograph of a deceased parent. The old accusation that Catholics worship saints, Mary, etc. is baloney.

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