Archbishop Sheen once said, “…It does not take much time to make us saints—it only takes much love.”
These words are certainly true. The cause for Archbishop Sheen’s sainthood was officially opened by the Diocese of Peoria in 2002. In 2008, the diocesan phase of the cause was completed and 22 volumes of testimony were sent to Rome. As we approach year 8 of the cause, I reflect back on the countless hours of work put in by Msgr. Richard Soseman, our former Episcopal delegate, our Bishop, Daniel Jenky, his staff, the staff of the Foundation, the many volunteers we have around the country and the world, and our Postulator in Rome, Dr. Andrea Ambrosi and his staff. These wonderful people have dedicated time, finances, and prayer to this Cause.
While I know that the cause would not be where it is today without the hard work and hours of dedication, I know that the ultimate source of the progress is LOVE. The love of those working on the cause—the love they have for Bishop Sheen, for those he’s touched, for the Church, for the communion of saints, and for our Lord.
Of course, we must not think that this cause is solely about those working on it. We know that above all this cause is about the man who changed the world for Christ, Archbishop Sheen. The love that Archbishop Sheen had for Our Lord, His Church, and His children is what made him a candidate for sainthood. Archbishop Sheen shared his love with all those he met. He reached out to the hungry, the homeless and the sick, to sinners and saints, never hesitating to do whatever he could for those who asked (and even those who didn’t).
It is this love that has inspired so many to return to their faith, to join the Church, and to truly believe that life is worth living.
Let us never forget to do all things out of LOVE. St. Therese of Lisieux said, “love is in the details.” In all the little things we do, even simply handing someone a Bishop Sheen Holy Card, let us do it with great love in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.
- Msgr. Stanley Deptula, Executive Director of the Archbishop Fulton John Sheen Foundation