Pope Francis declares Indian priest Joseph Vaz as saint in Colombo

Pope Francis has declared 17th century Indian priest and missionary Joseph Vaz as saint in Colombo, Sri Lanka.

Pope announced it while addressing a holy mass for 5 lakh people at the Gall Face Green in Colombo. Joseph Vaz has become first priest from Sri Lanka, canonised as saint.

About Joseph Vaz

  • He was born on 21 April 1651 in Benaulim Goa (then Portuguese India) and was ordained as priest in 1676 in Goa.
  • Later in 1687, he moved to Sri Lanka and worked for revival of Catholic Church in a period of Dutch repression of Catholics.
  • Since then he had founded several churches and chapels, helping revive the faith of Catholics by Calvinists in Sri Lanka.
  • He died in 1711 and was beatified by Pope John Paull II in Colombo on 21 January 1995.

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