Frank Clooney's post below got me thinking about who else should be a saint. Given that I'm not the pope, I don't have much say in the matter, but here's my Top Five list. (I'm leaving out those who are already on the fast track like Pope John Paul II, Mother Teresa, John Henry Newman, etc.) Of course it all depends on whether these men and women get going and intercede for some miracles. But here are some whose causes seem obvious choices.
1.) John XXIII. Come on. He's about the holiest guy I can imagine. Read his incredible book The Journal of a Soul, a series of diary entries from the time he was a young seminarian to the end of his life, to see how humility can co-exist with great learning and wisdom. And how humor can co-exist with holiness. "Your Holiness, how many people work in the Vatican?" a journalist asked. "About half of them." How many popes could have a book like this written about them? Holy, prayerful, humble, funny, warm, loving, hardworking. Saint? A slam dunk.
2.) Dorothy Day. For all the reasons Fr. Clooney says. Her quote, "Don't make me a saint; I don't want to be dismissed that easily," is often used against those who support her canonization. But she had a great devotion to the saints, wrote a book about St. Therese of Lisieux, and understood their essential place in our faith. Her recently published journals, The Duty of Delight, edited by Robert Ellsberg, show new aspects of her holiness (for example, caring for the dying wife of her former husband, Forster). Amazing.
3.) Oscar Romero. Another obvious saint. And martyr, for God's sake. Literally. Killed for his defense of the poor, while he was celebrating Mass. The holdup is unbelievable. Almost unconscionable.
4.) Peter Favre. Never heard of him? Often called the "Second Jesuit." (That's him up top, in the cassock and biretta.) Close friend of St. Ignatius Loyola and St. Francis Xavier, and the man who Ignatius said could best direct people through the Spiritual Exercises. (And you figure Ignatius was a fairly good judge of this.) During the time of the Reformation, when everyone else was condemning Protestants, Peter (Pierre) was praying for them and reminding his brother Jesuits (and other Christians) to love them both in word and in deed. "Take care, take care," he wrote, "never to shut your heart to anyone." (That comment should make him the patron of bloggers.) His lovely (but long) Memoriale is a wonderful window into a sometimes-overlooked spiritual master. The pious legend is that he is still Blessed, and won't intercede for a miracle to cement his canonization, because he doesn't want to take the attention away from his friends Ignatius and Francis. But they're plenty famous now, Peter. Time for your final miracle.
5.) Dorothy Stang. Another martyr, though in a different context than we are used to. When her killers came for her, she read passages to them from her Bible. At a time when the Vatican is investigating the "quality of life" of American women religious, they might take a look at the quality of her life.
Other suggestions welcome.