The small communist south-east Asian nation of Laos will have its very own martyrs, possibly within just a few months, reports Vatican Insider/Ucanews.
Two parallel processes have begun for a group of religious, missionaries and lay people. The processes have been split down the middle: the missionary Oblate of Mary Immaculate (OMI), Mario Borzaga and the Laotian catechist Paul Thoj Xyooj killed in 1960; and 15 martyrs, including missionaries and lay catechists killed in Laos between 1954 and 1970.
Angelo Pelis, OMI, is Postulator for the Cause of Borzaga-Thoj Xyooj.
He completed Borzaga’s 'Positio' (a 480-page document) last April, after which it was reviewed and approved by the relator for the cause, Jozef Kijas. The Congregation for the Causes of Saints published the 'Positio' (a text which presents evidence to support a cause for beatification) on June 9. Forty copies were printed and sent to a group of theologian advisors and cardinals to be examined.
'Documents were gathered with a view to prove the martyrdom of the two servants of God,' Pelis told Vatican Insider.
Once their martyrdom has been recognised, the beatification process can start. 'Given Borzaga’s spiritual stature, emphasis was placed on his vocation for the sainthood, proof of which is to be found in his writings.'
A second process has been started for 15 missionary martyrs, including five French OMIs, five religious from the Missions Étrangères de Paris (MEP) and five Laotian lay people.
The bishops of Laos are backing the process which has been entrusted to the Diocese of Nantes, the home diocese of one of the MEP missionaries, Fr Jean-Baptiste Malo.
FULL STORY Laos group to be 'fast tracked' for martyr recognition (Vatican Insider/Ucanews)