“The Priest who saved lives on Titanic to be canonized saint”
Father Thomas Byles, soon to be #Saint
According to CatholicsSay.com, applications seeking the opening of Father Thomas Byles’ cause for sainthood, have been submitted by Father Graham Smith, a Parish priest, of Saint Helen’s Church in Essex (where Father Thomas Byles served as a parish priest in 1905).
“We hope people around the world will pray to him if they are in need and, if a miracle occurs, then beatification and then canonization can go forward,” Fr. Smith said in a statement to BBC.
The path to sainthood through beatification and canonization is essential to moving forward for Fr Byles to be declared a saint.
“Devotion to a heroic priest who died on the Titanic is growing”
The Catholic Herald UK has an amazing MUST READ article on Fr Byles here; the article first appeared in the April 8, 2016, issue of The Catholic Herald.
I remember reading this heart-wrenching story about the Titanic Priest a few years ago. I actually think of him quite often. What an amazing gift of self-sacrifice. Fr Byles was offered a seat on a life raft but refused to be rescued. His spirit was set on the rescue of souls. A gift of life that will last eternally! Fr Byles gave up his life at age 42. Wow! That is, well, that is (cough, cough) an interesting age…
“There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” – John 15:13
Fr Byles was en route to officiate his brother’s wedding in America. He had originally bought a ticket on a different vessel but changed to the Titanic at the last minute.
“On the morning of Sunday April 14, Fr Byles celebrated Mass and preached a homily which, according to the Evening World, was on the need to have a “lifeboat in the shape of religious consolation at hand in case of spiritual shipwreck”. The following night, the Titanic struck the iceberg.”
As the ship began to sink, Fr Byles, another priest and the remaining passengers heard Confessions and later started singing the hymn ‘Nearer My God To Thee,” as reported by witness Agnes McCoy. Miss McCoy, a survivor, recalls seeing Fr Byles and another priest praying with 100 other passengers, as she boarded a life raft.