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Declaration by the Pope that a deceased person is raised to the full honors of the altar, i.e., a saint after previously having been beatified. Two miracles credited to the beatus (feminine: beata) are usually required before canonization to attest the heroic virtue of the saint. Beatification allows veneration of the blessed, canonization requires it. The canonization is celebrated at St. Peter's and is usually followed by a solemn triduum in another church in the city or elsewhere within a limited time. (Etym. Latin canonizare, to canonize; from canon, catalogue of saints.)
All items in this dictionary are from Fr. John Hardon's Modern Catholic Dictionary, © Eternal Life. Used with permission.