- 07.05.13 06:50 PM EDT
Pope John Paul II is cleared to become a saint with the approval of a second miracle by Pope Francis only eight years after his death. The fastest canonization recorded took 27 years. Now that he's being canonized, the question is: what does it take to become a saint?
Step 1a: God Chooses
Though the Catholic Church recognizes the key factors, it is still God who makes saints. The job of the church is to recognize them as such.
Step 1: A Local Bishop Investigates
At the first step, a would-be saint is called a "servant of god" while a bishop conducts research on his doings.
Step 2: Vatican Review
A commission of theologians in the Vatican determine if this was a life of "heroic value." If so, they are deemed "venerable."
Step 3: Beatification
Here's where it can get tricky: non-martyrs have to be credited with a miracle, usually of some sort of spontaneous healing. This has to be an act that medicine cannot refute. Once approved, the saint is then considered "blessed."
Step 4: Canonization & Sainthood
Once a second miracle is approved, the person can be canonized and named a saint. The ceremony to confirm his sainthood is expected by the end of this year.