Skip to comments.Father Baker Another Step Nearer to Sainthood
Posted on 01/16/2011 10:32:11 AM PST by marshmallow
Lackawanna priest declared 'venerable' after review of his life is approved by pope
Father Nelson H. Baker's journey to sainthood moved forward Friday, when Pope Benedict XVI approved an 800-page review of the Lackawanna priest's life.
Father Baker, who died almost 75 years ago, has been declared the Venerable Father Nelson H. Baker. He devoted his priesthood to charitable works,helping mostly babies, children and women. He also greatly expanded Our Lady of Victory Parish in Lackawanna.
"We rejoice today that in a meeting with Cardinal Angelo Amato, prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI has declared the heroic virtues of Servant of God Father Nelson Baker," the Catholic Diocese of Buffalo said in a statement.
After the Vatican accepted the petition for Father Baker's sainthood in 1988, the priest was given the title "servant of God."
The next step toward sainthood requires the Vatican to accept a miracle attributed to Father Baker. Evidence of one is now pending before the Vatican's Congregation for the Causes of Saints; diocesan officials would not reveal details about the miracle that is being investigated.
How long it will take to make a decision on that is unknown. It could take 100 years or a much shorter period, officials with the diocese said.
The document detailing Father Baker's life was submitted in sections, with the last portion sent to the congregation in November.
(Excerpt) Read more at buffalonews.com ...
I had the pleasure of visiting the Shrine to Our Lady of Victory when in Buffalo last summer for the Catholic Daughters of the Americas national convention.
I had never heard of it or Father Baker but what he did was astounding and the fact that he did it at such an old age makes it even more so.
The shrine is beautiful.
“Nelson H. Baker’s journey to sainthood moved forward Friday,”
If he wasn’t a saint before death, he ain’t becoming one now...
Vatican to encourage greater caution in opening sainthood causes
Pope clarifies Churchs traditions, norms for canonization; announces new instruction
They Need A Miracle Will a future pope relax the rules for sainthood?
Role of Miracles In Sainthood Eyed
Saint-making Pope is ready to ditch the miracle clause
Contribution to a Canonization
Catholic Biblical Apologetics: The Canonization of Saints: Current Canonization Process, Biblical Description of Miracles
These might help you. Please read them.
I understand the process, which is either false, or a poor choice of words.
If someone is not a saint before they depart the earth by
knowing Christ as their Savior, they do not become a saint
afterward. This includes the latest John Paul.
This presumes someone values the Bible. If not, a saint
can be whatever you wish it to be...
best to you,
I had seen all those threads about the upcoming making Blessed of John Paul II. He is on the fast-track to sainthood, he even beats the previous holder, Blessed Mother Teresia by about two weeks.
.- Pope Benedict officially recognized the heroic virtues of 20th century American priest Fr. Nelson Baker, which moves the beloved champion for the poor further along in the process towards sainthood.
Fr. Baker who was born in Buffalo, New York in 1842 lived to be 95 years old and is heralded for building what's been called a city of charity in Lackawana, New York. By the time of his death in 1936, his initiatives for the poor included a minor basilica, an infant home, a home for unwed mothers, a boys' orphanage, a hospital, a nurses' home, and an elementary and high school.
On Jan. 14, Pope Benedict recognized the heroic virtues of Fr. Baker, which is the second step in the priest's cause for canonization. After a candidate is initially listed as a Servant of God, the promoter of the cause must prove that the candidate lived heroic virtues. When documents and testimonies are presented to the Congregation for the Causes of Saints in Rome, and the candidate is approved, he or she earns the title of "Venerable. Two documented and medically authenticated miracles are then needed, one for beatification and one for canonization.
Father Baker was known for his tremendous works of charity during his 60 years of priesthood, Archbishop Timothy M. Dolan of New York said on Jan. 14. Archbishop Dolan expressed delight in the Pope's action on his blog, The Gospel in the Digital Age.
The Diocese of Buffalo said on Friday that they rejoice at the news , adding that the latest move is the next step in what we hope and pray will be the eventual beatification and canonization of Father Baker.
After his upbringing in Buffalo in the late 19th century and a period of enlistment as a solider in the Civil War, Fr. Baker enjoyed economic success running a feed and grain business with his good friend Joe Meyer. He often spent much of his time and money, however, contributing to the local Catholic orphanage. Despite the apprehension of his father, brother and business partner yet to the delight of his mother he eventually discerned that he wanted to join the priesthood.
Though he was a good 10 years older than most of his fellow seminarians, Fr. Baker relished his experience in the seminary, earning top marks in his studies, organizing sports and drama events and being considered a leader by his peers, noted Sister Mary Monica of the Slaves of the Immaculate Heart of Mary in her biography of the priest. During his time at the seminary, things took a brief turn for the worse when a bought with erysipelas a disease that could be cured with antibiotics today, but in the nineteenth century was often fatal hospitalized him for 11 weeks and threatened to take his life.
He slowly recovered, and eventually went on a pilgrimage to Rome with his fellow seminarians in 1874, stopping at the Shrine of Our Lady of Victories in Paris. It was there he began an intense Marian devotion that would influence the rest of his life's work.
Fr. Baker was ordained a priest in 1876 and was assigned to be the superintendent of a group of Catholic institutions at Limestone Hill an area now known as Lackawana which were wracked with insurmountable debts. Using his business savvy, Fr. Nelson gave every penny of his savings to the institutions and hand wrote thousands of letters imploring Catholics to become members of the "Association of Our Lady of Victory" for a fee of 25 cents a year. Over the years, his tireless work helped the facilities flourish.
After decades of unyielding service to the community, Fr. Baker died in 1936 at the age of 95. He was named a Servant of God in 1987 by the late Pope John Paul II, and his legacy lives on in the current work of Our Lady of Victories Institutions, which annually serves more than 3,500 children and families in need.
That’s why a person like Father Baker will be called “venerable” — because they lived a holy and dedicated to Christ life.
Then the other two steps of the canonization process follow. But the person is obviously a very holy and righteous person to begin with.
I think this is a vocabulary difference — don’t Protestants tend to call everyone a saint?
Whereas Catholics reserve that title for those people through which miracles have happened and a canonization has been performed.
For Catholics, it has a very holy meaning. Not just your everyday sort of thing to say about another normal person.
I can’t speak for others ... I’m just telling you what scripture says. I accept God’s word as to who is a saint- all true believers in Christ.
And thus our discussion because you have your own interpretation of it.
We, as Catholics, have a different interpretation of it.
Actually, no interpretation is involved. The Apostles call all Christians “saints”. I accept what God inspired them to write. No less.
He spoke with them peacefully and swore to them, "We will not try to injure you or your friends." So they trusted him. But he arrested sixty of them and killed them in one day, according to the text of Scripture: "The flesh of your saints they have strewn, and their blood they have shed round about Jerusalem, and there was no one to bury them." [1MACC 7:15-17]
When he had armed each of them, not so much with the safety of shield and spear as with the encouragement of noble words, he cheered them all by relating a dream, a kind of vision, worthy of belief. What he saw was this: Onias, the former high priest, a good and virtuous man, modest in appearance, gentle in manners, distinguished in speech, and trained from childhood in every virtuous practice, was praying with outstretched arms for the whole Jewish community. Then in the same way another man appeared, distinguished by his white hair and dignity, and with an air about him of extraordinary, majestic authority. Onias then said of him, "This is God's prophet Jeremiah, who loves his brethren and fervently prays for his people and their holy city." Stretching out his right hand, Jeremiah presented a gold sword to Judas. As he gave it to him he said, "Accept this holy sword as a gift from God; with it you shall crush your adversaries." [2MACC 15:11-16]
Then shall the just one with great assurance confront his oppressors who set at nought his labors. Seeing this, they shall be shaken with dreadful fear, and amazed at the unlooked-for salvation. They shall say among themselves, rueful and groaning through anguish of spirit: "This is he whom once we held as a laughingstock and as a type for mockery, fools that we were! His life we accounted madness, and his death dishonored. See how he is accounted among the sons of God; how his lot is with the saints!" [WISDOM 5:1-5]
The LORD said to me: Even if Moses and Samuel stood before me, my heart would not turn toward this people. Send them away from me. [JER 15:1]
"I say to you, many will come from the east and the west, and will recline with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob at the banquet in the kingdom of heaven, but the children of the kingdom will be driven out into the outer darkness, where there will be wailing and grinding of teeth." [MT 8:11-12]
After six days Jesus took Peter, James, and John his brother, and led them up a high mountain by themselves. And he was transfigured before them; his face shone like the sun and his clothes became white as light. And behold, Moses and Elijah appeared to them, conversing with him. [MT 17:1-3]
Jesus said to them in reply, "You are misled because you do not know the scriptures or the power of God. At the resurrection they neither marry nor are given in marriage but are like the angels in heaven. And concerning the resurrection of the dead, have you not read what was said to you by God, 'I am the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob'? He is not the God of the dead but of the living." [MT 22:29-32]
But Jesus cried out again in a loud voice, and gave up his spirit. And behold, the veil of the sanctuary was torn in two from top to bottom. The earth quaked, rocks were split, tombs were opened, and the bodies of many saints who had fallen asleep were raised. And coming forth from their tombs after his resurrection, they entered the holy city and appeared to many. The centurion and the men with him who were keeping watch over Jesus feared greatly when they saw the earthquake and all that was happening, and they said, "Truly, this was the Son of God!" [MT 27:50-54]
After six days Jesus took Peter, James, and John and led them up a high mountain apart by themselves. And he was transfigured before them, and his clothes became dazzling white, such as no fuller on earth could bleach them. Then Elijah appeared to them along with Moses, and they were conversing with Jesus. Then Peter said to Jesus in reply, "Rabbi, it is good that we are here! Let us make three tents: one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah." He hardly knew what to say, they were so terrified. Then a cloud came, casting a shadow over them; then from the cloud came a voice, "This is my beloved Son. Listen to him." Suddenly, looking around, they no longer saw anyone but Jesus alone with them. [MK 9:2-8]
Jesus said to them, "Are you not misled because you do not know the scriptures or the power of God? When they rise from the dead, they neither marry nor are given in marriage, but they are like the angels in heaven. As for the dead being raised, have you not read in the Book of Moses, in the passage about the bush, how God told him, 'I am the God of Abraham, (the) God of Isaac, and (the) God of Jacob'? He is not God of the dead but of the living. You are greatly misled." [MK 12:24-27]
About eight days after he said this, he took Peter, John, and James and went up the mountain to pray. While he was praying his face changed in appearance and his clothing became dazzling white. And behold, two men were conversing with him, Moses and Elijah, who appeared in glory and spoke of his exodus that he was going to accomplish in Jerusalem. Peter and his companions had been overcome by sleep, but becoming fully awake, they saw his glory and the two men standing with him. As they were about to part from him, Peter said to Jesus, "Master, it is good that we are here; let us make three tents, one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah." But he did not know what he was saying. While he was still speaking, a cloud came and cast a shadow over them, and they became frightened when they entered the cloud. Then from the cloud came a voice that said, "This is my chosen Son; listen to him." After the voice had spoken, Jesus was found alone. They fell silent and did not at that time tell anyone what they had seen. [LK 9:28-36]
"What man among you having a hundred sheep and losing one of them would not leave the ninety-nine in the desert and go after the lost one until he finds it? And when he does find it, he sets it on his shoulders with great joy and, upon his arrival home, he calls together his friends and neighbors and says to them, 'Rejoice with me because I have found my lost sheep.' I tell you, in just the same way there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous people who have no need of repentance. Or what woman having ten coins and losing one would not light a lamp and sweep the house, searching carefully until she finds it? And when she does find it, she calls together her friends and neighbors and says to them, 'Rejoice with me because I have found the coin that I lost.' In just the same way, I tell you, there will be rejoicing among the angels of God over one sinner who repents." [LK 15:4-10]
Jesus said to them, "The children of this age marry and remarry; but those who are deemed worthy to attain to the coming age and to the resurrection of the dead neither marry nor are given in marriage. They can no longer die, for they are like angels; and they are the children of God because they are the ones who will rise. That the dead will rise even Moses made known in the passage about the bush, when he called 'Lord' the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob; and he is not God of the dead, but of the living, for to him all are alive." [LK 20:34-38]
Peter thus was being kept in prison, but prayer by the church was fervently being made to God on his behalf. On the very night before Herod was to bring him to trial, Peter, secured by double chains, was sleeping between two soldiers, while outside the door guards kept watch on the prison. Suddenly the angel of the Lord stood by him and a light shone in the cell. He tapped Peter on the side and awakened him, saying, "Get up quickly." The chains fell from his wrists. [ACTS 12:5-7]
I urge you, (brothers,) by our Lord Jesus Christ and by the love of the Spirit, to join me in the struggle by your prayers to God on my behalf, that I may be delivered from the disobedient in Judea, and that my ministry for Jerusalem may be acceptable to the holy ones, so that I may come to you with joy by the will of God and be refreshed together with you. [ROM 15:30-32]
As a body is one though it has many parts, and all the parts of the body, though many, are one body, so also Christ. For in one Spirit we were all baptized into one body, whether Jews or Greeks, slaves or free persons, and we were all given to drink of one Spirit. Now the body is not a single part, but many. If a foot should say, "Because I am not a hand I do not belong to the body," it does not for this reason belong any less to the body. Or if an ear should say, "Because I am not an eye I do not belong to the body," it does not for this reason belong any less to the body. If the whole body were an eye, where would the hearing be? If the whole body were hearing, where would the sense of smell be? But as it is, God placed the parts, each one of them, in the body as he intended. If they were all one part, where would the body be? But as it is, there are many parts, yet one body. The eye cannot say to the hand, "I do not need you," nor again the head to the feet, "I do not need you." Indeed, the parts of the body that seem to be weaker are all the more necessary, and those parts of the body that we consider less honorable we surround with greater honor, and our less presentable parts are treated with greater propriety, whereas our more presentable parts do not need this. But God has so constructed the body as to give greater honor to a part that is without it, so that there may be no division in the body, but that the parts may have the same concern for one another. If (one) part suffers, all the parts suffer with it; if one part is honored, all the parts share its joy. [Taken from 1COR 12:12-26]
May the eyes of (your) hearts be enlightened, that you may know what is the hope that belongs to his call, what are the riches of glory in his inheritance among the holy ones, and what is the surpassing greatness of his power for us who believe, in accord with the exercise of his great might, which he worked in Christ, raising him from the dead and seating him at his right hand in the heavens, far above every principality, authority, power, and dominion, and every name that is named not only in this age but also in the one to come. And he put all things beneath his feet and gave him as head over all things to the church, which is his body, the fullness of the one who fills all things in every way. [EPH 1:18-23]
So then you are no longer strangers and sojourners, but you are fellow citizens with the holy ones and members of the household of God, built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the capstone. Through him the whole structure is held together and grows into a temple sacred in the Lord; in him you also are being built together into a dwelling place of God in the Spirit. [EPH 2:19-22]
For this reason I kneel before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named, that he may grant you in accord with the riches of his glory to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in the inner self, and that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, rooted and grounded in love, may have strength to comprehend with all the holy ones what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, so that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. [EPH 3:14-19]
With all prayer and supplication, pray at every opportunity in the Spirit. To that end, be watchful with all perseverance and supplication for all the holy ones and also for me, that speech may be given me to open my mouth, to make known with boldness the mystery of the gospel for which I am an ambassador in chains, so that I may have the courage to speak as I must. [EPH 6:18-20]
Therefore, from the day we heard this, we do not cease praying for you and asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will through all spiritual wisdom and understanding to live in a manner worthy of the Lord, so as to be fully pleasing, in every good work bearing fruit and growing in the knowledge of God, strengthened with every power, in accord with his glorious might, for all endurance and patience, with joy giving thanks to the Father, who has made you fit to share in the inheritance of the holy ones in light. He delivered us from the power of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. [COL 1:9-14]
What thanksgiving, then, can we render to God for you, for all the joy we feel on your account before our God? Night and day we pray beyond measure to see you in person and to remedy the deficiencies of your faith. Now may God himself, our Father, and our Lord Jesus direct our way to you, and may the Lord make you increase and abound in love for one another and for all, just as we have for you, so as to strengthen your hearts, to be blameless in holiness before our God and Father at the coming of our Lord Jesus with all his holy ones. (Amen.) [1THES 3:9-13]
Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us rid ourselves of every burden and sin that clings to us and persevere in running the race that lies before us while keeping our eyes fixed on Jesus, the leader and perfecter of faith. For the sake of the joy that lay before him he endured the cross, despising its shame, and has taken his seat at the right of the throne of God. [HEB 12:1-2]
No, you have approached Mount Zion and the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and countless angels in festal gathering, and the assembly of the firstborn enrolled in heaven, and God the judge of all, and the spirits of the just made perfect, and Jesus, the mediator of a new covenant, and the sprinkled blood that speaks more eloquently than that of Abel. [HEB 12:22-24]
Then I saw standing in the midst of the throne and the four living creatures and the elders, a Lamb that seemed to have been slain. He had seven horns and seven eyes; these are the (seven) spirits of God sent out into the whole world. He came and received the scroll from the right hand of the one who sat on the throne. When he took it, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb. Each of the elders held a harp and gold bowls filled with incense, which are the prayers of the holy ones. [RV 5:6-8]
When he broke open the fifth seal, I saw underneath the altar the souls of those who had been slaughtered because of the witness they bore to the word of God. They cried out in a loud voice, "How long will it be, holy and true master, before you sit in judgment and avenge our blood on the inhabitants of the earth?" Each of them was given a white robe, and they were told to be patient a little while longer until the number was filled of their fellow servants and brothers who were going to be killed as they had been. [RV 6:9-11]
After this I had a vision of a great multitude, which no one could count, from every nation, race, people, and tongue. They stood before the throne and before the Lamb, wearing white robes and holding palm branches in their hands. They cried out in a loud voice: "Salvation comes from our God, who is seated on the throne, and from the Lamb." All the angels stood around the throne and around the elders and the four living creatures. They prostrated themselves before the throne, worshiped God, and exclaimed: "Amen. Blessing and glory, wisdom and thanksgiving, honor, power, and might be to our God forever and ever. Amen." Then one of the elders spoke up and said to me, "Who are these wearing white robes, and where did they come from?" I said to him, "My lord, you are the one who knows." He said to me, "These are the ones who have survived the time of great distress; they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. For this reason they stand before God's throne and worship him day and night in his temple. The one who sits on the throne will shelter them. They will not hunger or thirst anymore, nor will the sun or any heat strike them. For the Lamb who is in the center of the throne will shepherd them and lead them to springs of life-giving water, and God will wipe away every tear from their eyes." [RV 7:9-17]
Another angel came and stood at the altar, holding a gold censer. He was given a great quantity of incense to offer, along with the prayers of all the holy ones, on the gold altar that was before the throne. The smoke of the incense along with the prayers of the holy ones went up before God from the hand of the angel. [RV 8:3-4]
Then the seventh angel blew his trumpet. There were loud voices in heaven, saying, "The kingdom of the world now belongs to our Lord and to his Anointed, and he will reign forever and ever." The twenty-four elders who sat on their thrones before God prostrated themselves and worshiped God and said: "We give thanks to you, Lord God almighty, who are and who were. For you have assumed your great power and have established your reign. The nations raged, but your wrath has come, and the time for the dead to be judged, and to recompense your servants, the prophets, and the holy ones and those who fear your name, the small and the great alike, and to destroy those who destroy the earth." Then God's temple in heaven was opened, and the ark of his covenant could be seen in the temple. There were flashes of lightning, rumblings, and peals of thunder, an earthquake, and a violent hailstorm. [RV 11:15-19]
Then I looked and there was the Lamb standing on Mount Zion, and with him a hundred and forty-four thousand who had his name and his Father's name written on their foreheads. I heard a sound from heaven like the sound of rushing water or a loud peal of thunder. The sound I heard was like that of harpists playing their harps. They were singing (what seemed to be) a new hymn before the throne, before the four living creatures and the elders. No one could learn this hymn except the hundred and forty-four thousand who had been ransomed from the earth. These are they who were not defiled with women; they are virgins and these are the ones who follow the Lamb wherever he goes. They have been ransomed as the firstfruits of the human race for God and the Lamb. On their lips no deceit has been found; they are unblemished. [RV 14:1-5]
Here is what sustains the holy ones who keep God's commandments and their faith in Jesus. I heard a voice from heaven say, "Write this: Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from now on." "Yes," said the Spirit, "let them find rest from their labors, for their works accompany them." [RV 14:12-13]
"Let us rejoice and be glad and give him glory. For the wedding day of the Lamb has come, his bride has made herself ready. She was allowed to wear a bright, clean linen garment." (The linen represents the righteous deeds of the holy ones.) Then the angel said to me, "Write this: Blessed are those who have been called to the wedding feast of the Lamb." And he said to me, "These words are true; they come from God." [Taken from RV 19:7-9]
Then I saw thrones; those who sat on them were entrusted with judgment. I also saw the souls of those who had been beheaded for their witness to Jesus and for the word of God, and who had not worshiped the beast or its image nor had accepted its mark on their foreheads or hands. They came to life and they reigned with Christ for a thousand years. The rest of the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were over. This is the first resurrection. Blessed and holy is the one who shares in the first resurrection. The second death has no power over these; they will be priests of God and of Christ, and they will reign with him for (the) thousand years. [RV 20:4-6]