Estonia's Catholics receive relic of St. John Paul II
Estonia's Catholic community has received a relic of St. John Paul II.
The relic (pictured) is a drop of the Pontiff's blood, on a piece of cloth, and will be placed in the St. Peter and St. Paul Cathedral in Tallinn, the seat of the Catholic Church in Estonia, in the spring, ETV news show "Aktuaalne kaamera" (AK) reported Sunday.
The relic qualifies as one of the highest order.
Spokesperson for the Catholic Church in Estonia Marge Paas told AK that: "Almost every Catholic Church in France, in Italy, Spain or Germany is home to a saintly relic. My belief is that that the presence of St. John Paul II will certainly be represented here in a very special way."
The relic will be displayed on April 2, the anniversary St. John Pail II's passing in 2005, in the Mary Chapel at the St. Peter and St. Paul's Cathedral and all members of the public will be able to view it.
Next September marks another important anniversary for Estonian Catholics and the country as a whole, namely 30 years since Pope John Paul II made an official visit to Estonia.
The St. Peter and St. Paul congregation had appealed to the Archbishop of Kraków, a post which John Paul II once held, in relation to this upcoming anniversary and how it might be marked in Estonia.
"In this way, those people who, 30 years ago, met the Pope at Raekoja plats, will be able to relive their memories of that day and perhaps be with him on this commemoration day, and pay their respects to the relic," Paas went on.
Born Karol Wojtyla in Wadowice, Poland, in 1920, John Paul II became pope in 1978 and passed away in 2005. He was declared venerable by his successor, Benedict XVI, and was beatified on May 1, 2011. He had Lithuanian ancestry on his mother's side.
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Editor: Andrew Whyte, Merili Nael