Day By Day© by Chris Muir.

Sunday, November 06, 2005

A halo for a tired mother

An AP story seems to say that the Vatican is working towards bestowing a sainthood on Eurosia Fabris solely because she raised two orphan children, in addition to having nine of her own. Now, I'm perfectly ready to bestow a sainthood on any mother who successfully raises large numbers of children. I find my own two, who are delightful, exhausting to raise. The thought of 11 children leaves me almost too tired to type. I do wonder, however, if this initiative will really make any inroads in increasing the number of children Catholic families have. Certainly it seems to be the purpose behind the Vatican's initiative here (at least according to the AP):

Benedict's predecessor, John Paul II, stressed the importance of providing role models from daily life for Roman Catholic faithful. "Mamma Rosa ... was comforting proof" that sainthood can come in the dailiness of life, said Saraiva Martins, who praised the woman for "the sweetness of her motherhood." Fabris was singled out by Vatican Radio as being a "dazzling model of holiness lived out in daily family life." "She knew how to transform her very large family into a school of holiness," Vatican Radio said on the eve of the ceremony. The average number of children per woman in the European Union is 1.5, according to EU statistics, but in some countries, including heavily Roman Catholic Italy and Spain, the average is 1.3.
I do think it's a tremendous tragedy when a society can no longer produce enough children to sustain its own existence, but I think people will be more responsive to cash incentives than to the sanctification of one woman who happened to have lots of children.