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Fulton Sheen beatification postponed

“In our current climate, it is important for the faithful to know there has never been, nor is there now, any allegation against Sheen involving the abuse of a minor,” the Diocese of Peoria said in a statement.

U.S. Archbishop Fulton Sheen is pictured in an undated file photo. (CNS photo/courtesy Pontifical Mission Societies)

The scheduled beatification of Ven. Servant of God Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen has been postponed after several U.S. bishops asked that the cause be given more time for examination. The Diocese of Peoria announced the delay on Dec. 3.

Archbishop Sheen’s beatification was set to take place on Dec. 21.

“With deep regret, Bishop Daniel Jenky, C.S.C, Bishop of Peoria, announces that he has been informed by the Holy See that the beatification of Fulton Sheen will be postponed,” said the press release from the diocese.

The diocese originally received word from the Vatican on Nov. 18 that the beatification had been approved to take place the following month. But the diocese said that on Dec. 2 “the Holy See decided to postpone the date of Beatification, at the request of a few members of the Bishop’s Conference who have asked for further consideration.”

“Bishop Jenky is deeply saddened by this decision,” said the press release. “In particular, Bishop Jenky is even more concerned for the many faithful who are devoted to Sheen and who will be affected by this news.”

Jenky is “firmly convinced of the great holiness” of Sheen, and “remains confident that Sheen will be beatified.” The cause for Sheen’s beatification and canonization will continue and, the press release stated, there have been “many miracles” reported through Sheen’s intercession, including some as recently as the last three weeks.

The Peoria diocese explicitly stated that the delay was not the result of any allegations of abuse of a minor.

“In our current climate, it is important for the faithful to know there has never been, nor is there now, any allegation against Sheen involving the abuse of a minor,” added the release.

It was not revealed in the release which, or how many, bishops requested the delay, nor did the release state what prompted these requests.

The diocese said that throughout the investigation of Sheen’s life during the beatification process, “it has been demonstrated definitively that he was an exemplary model of Christian conduct and a model of leadership in the Church. At no time has his life of virtue ever been called into question.”

The diocese says they are “confident” that any further investigation into the life of Archbishop Sheen will only result in positive discoveries that will only bolster the case for his beatification.

“The Diocese of Peoria has no doubt that Fulton Sheen, who brought so many souls to Jesus Christ in his lifetime, will be recognized as a model of holiness and virtue.”

There is no indication from the diocese of when they expect a rescheduled date for the beatification. The Diocese of Peoria and the USCCB did not respond to CNA’s requests for comment in time for publication.


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18 Comments

  1. “at the request of a few members of the Bishop’s Conference who have asked for further consideration.””

    I can imagine which members they were. Perhaps Archbishop Sheen was just too (shudder) *Catholic.* Also too rigid and insufficiently “sensitive.”

  2. Why am I not surprised? I suspect that the bishops are either jealous of what he did, or in league with the New York people who hated him.

  3. Bishop Sheen wore a hair shirt every day, even under the TV lights. Clearly he was not on board with the animal rights (rites?) agenda.

  4. I can only imagine who the Catholic bishops were who called for a delay. I suppose it’s the usual suspects. I also wonder whether this isn’t the Vatican’s way of “payback” to the Church in the USA which it obviously loathes.

    And, by the way, where is that report on the factors that allowed the homosexual predator McCarrick to rise in the prelature ranks so that he could be the Vatican’s ambassador to Beijing sans portfolio?

  5. To date Bishop Fulton Sheen’s beatification has been postponed. Reason or reasons? Nothing has been forthcoming.

    Logically speaking, ‘postponed’ means that it shall surely occur some day in the future.

    Or shall we hear that his beatification has been cancelled? I hope not but it can be the case.

  6. I hope I’m wrong, but the sometimes glacial pace of proceeding in the Church may well mean that the Beautification will be put off for a very long time. A very, very, long time. I doubt if the Vatican will put any urgency on this matter. Again, I hope and pray I’m wrong. And I join with those who would like to see identification of the the bishops who urged postponement. The faithful should receive an explanation.

  7. This is simple. This is the work of Devil. The Devil hated Archbishop Fulton Sheen when he was alive. This man was blessed by Heaven in a most remarkable way and he led countless souls to Jesus in our Lord’s Eucharistic Love. It’s true. The Devil hated this very saintly man for being such a profoundly effective Apostle that our Lord used to save souls, and I include myself as one of those countless souls. And this latest incident of this man’s beatification being supposedly “postponed” for such egregious reason is truly demonic! That’s what it is pure and simple. And those few Bishops who asked for this beatification postponement should really be prayed for. I am a great great sinner, and I know my place, and I for sure would not want to be one of these Bishops who soon will pass from this life to the next and then have to account to the King of Kings and Lord of Lords for having held up the Heaven’s saintly crown to one of our Eternal King’s most faithful servant.

  8. This is ABSOLUTELY ridiculous!

    Why not name the bishops? I suspect they may be grinding an ax.

    I would point out that Bp. Sheen had been ostracized for many years by misguided bishops — until St. John Paul the Great went out of his way to find him and embrace him in St. Patrick’s Cathedral in NYC.

    Maybe the same guys who don’t see life as the preeminent issue??? We need a Bp. Sheen NOW!

  9. This is troubling and appears to be the work of those looking to sow seeds of doubt about this good man’s character. Name the “few members of the Bishops Conference” who raised a concern. What do they have to hide? What’s their agenda? They clearly have one. Disgraceful.

  10. As it turns out, and I assume CWR will run an article, Bishop Matano of the Dio. of Rochester asked for the delay, as Bishop Sheen may be named in a report that he mishandled sex abuse cases.

  11. “The Holy See decided to postpone the date of Beatification, at the request of a few members of the Bishop’s Conference who have asked for further consideration.”

    “It has been demonstrated definitively that he was an exemplary model of Christian conduct and a model of leadership in the Church. At no time has his life of virtue ever been called into question.”

    Huh? What’s the delay for this time if it’s not about his character? Hasn’t this process been delayed enough with unnecessary red tape over the years? This is getting old, and borderline disrespectful. Many will celebrate the day he is canonized.

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