Possible healing could advance Mother Delille's sainthood cause

Friday, Sep. 13, 2019
By Catholic News Service

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (CNS) — For what could be the first time in the 176-year history of the Diocese of Little Rock, a diocesan tribunal submitted formal documentation to the Vatican on an alleged healing miracle of a former Arkansas college student.

The documentation prepared for the Congregation for the Causes of Saints in Rome is one possible step for the beatification cause for Mother Henriette Delille, who founded the Sisters of the Holy Family in New Orleans. Her sainthood cause was opened in 1988 and was approved unanimously by U.S. bishops in 1997. She was declared venerable in 2010.

If her canonization cause continues, she could be the first black saint from the U.S.

Mother Delille was born in New Orleans in 1812. She died in 1862.

The story of a possible miracle attributed to Mother Delille’s intercession, stems from Christine McGee, who was a 19-year-old college student when the alleged healing happened in Little Rock, said Sister Doris Goudeaux, co-director of the Henriette Delille Commission Office.

The Holy Family Sisters were first informed about the alleged miracle in 2014 by McGee’s mother. The story was published in the order’s newsletter and Vatican officials saw it. The order then started the official investigation process.

Andrea Ambrosi, postulator of Mother Delille’s cause, received word from the Holy Family Sisters regarding the alleged miracle. The Diocese of Little Rock then received a formal request to embark on a fact-finding mission since the alleged miracle occurred in Arkansas.

The diocese opened the fact-finding case in 2015 about the alleged miracle and finished their work in 2018.

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