(Photo: AP Images / Arturo Mari, Handout)
Pope John Paul II, the popular Polish pope who served from 1978 until his death in 2005, has had a second miracle attributed to his name, setting him on course toward the fastest canonization in modern Roman Catholic Church history.
The Vatican Insider reported on Tuesday that doctors and a commission of theologians agreed to attribute a second miracle to his name, meaning that now the final step for Pope John Paul II to become a saint is for cardinals and bishops to agree on the decision.
The miracle is the healing of a Costa Rican woman, who suffered from severe brain damage before she had an "inexplicable recovery." According to The Independent, Italian newspaper Il Giornale quoted Vatican officials who claimed that a double miracle had actually been performed, because not only was the woman healed, but the faith of her family had been restored.
While the Vatican has yet to release the full details behind the case, the miracle supposedly occurred in May 2011, the day of John Paul II's beatification.
The first miracle attributed to the pontiff, which led to his beatification, concerned another healing –a French nun who recovered from Parkinson's disease in 2005. Sister Marie Simon-Pierre had said that her illness suddenly vanished when her order started praying on her behalf, and she wrote down Pope John Paul II's name on a piece of paper.
The 2005 miracle left the pope only steps away from sainthood, and if in the coming weeks the Congregation for the Causes of Saints' commission of cardinals and bishops verifies this reported second miracle, he will become the fastest saint to be recognized by the Church in its modern history, just eight years following his death.
The Atlantic Wire reminded readers that up until this point, the person to go through the quickest path to sainthood was Josemaria Escriva, the Spanish priest who founded Opus Dei, canonized 27 years after his death by Pope John Paul II himself.
Canonizations were a regular event during the Polish pope's reign. He proclaimed 482 saints which is more than during the leadership of the previous 17 popes put together.
While Pope John Paul II's canonization is not yet set in stone, The Insider speculated that the fast process suggests that the current pope, Francis, is also in favor of the proposed sainthood.