Dates: 1906-1945 and 1929-1968
Status of Cause: No cause
Prognosis: Only if they let in non-Catholics
Among Americans who follow canonizations there is some yearning among both church liberals (All Saints author Robert Ellsberg) and conservatives (First Things editor Richard John Neuhaus) that the church might one day open the ranks of the canonized to non-Roman Catholic Christians. Ellsberg wistfully notes that if non-Catholics qualified, he would hope that the martyred Baptist American civil rights leader Martin Luther King, whose social activism was rooted in his ministry, would be considered; Neuhaus would nominate Bonhoeffer, a prominent German theologian who urged fellow Lutherans to reject Naziism and was hanged after participating in a failed plot to kill Adolf Hitler.
David Van Biema