An Ecumenical Saint?
On Friday November 7th, Pope Francis approved the recommendation of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints that Father John Sullivan, S.J.(1861-1933), be declared Venerable. Fr Conor Harper SJ, welcomed the good news saying that “there are still thousand of people who are convinced that he points the way to God and to the healing power of God and to this extraordinary experience, a very rare, but does happen, this thing we call miracle.”
Rather unusually, the now Venerable John Sullivan was brought up in the Protestant tradition and educated at Portora Royal School, Enniskillen.
In December 1896 he was received into the Catholic Church and some four years later he entered the Jesuit Order. Most of his priestly life was spent in Clongowes Wood College, in Co. Kildare. The Church of Ireland joins with the Roman Catholic Church in celebrating this holy priest who was formed in both traditions. Pat Coyle spoke with Fr. Conor Haper to find out more, but first asked him how he felt upon hearing the news of Pope Francis’ recommendation.