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A saint (from the Latin sanctus) in Christianity is a human being who has been called to holiness. The term is used differently by various denominations, with some, such as the Anglicans, Methodists, and Lutherans distinguishing between Saints and saints. In high-church contexts, such as Anglo-Catholicism, a Saint is generally one to whom has been attributed (and who has generally demonstrated) a high level of holiness and sanctity. In this use, a saint is therefore not a believer, but one who has been transformed by virtue. In Roman Catholicism, a saint is a special sign of God's activity. In his book, Saint of the Day, editor Leonard Foley, OFM, says this of saints:" [Saints] surrender to God's love was so generous an approach to the total surrender of Jesus that the Church recognizes them as heroes and heroines worthy to be held up for our inspiration. They remind us that the Church is holy, can never stop being holy and is called to show the holiness of God by living the life of Christ." [1] In his book, Making Saints: How the Catholic Church Determines Who Becomes a Saint, Who Doesn't and Why, author Kenneth Woodward, notes the following: "A saint is always someone through whom we catch a glimpse of what God is like -- and of what we are called to be. Only God 'makes' saints, of course. The church merely identifies from time to time a few of these for emulation. The church then tells the story. But the author is the Source of the grace by which saints live. And there we have it: A saint is someone whose story God tells."[2] On the other hand, many denominations, notably in Protestantism, emphasise the traditional New Testament meaning of the word, preferring to write saint (lower case) to refer to any believer, in continuity with the doctrine of the priesthood of all believers. Some denominations venerate the dead saints, while others vehemently reject this practice. In many traditions, saints my be called upon by the living to interceed with the divine. In Catholicism, they are addressed and are alive in the Communion of the Saints.[3] Recently, for example, a man from the United States claimed in 2000 that Venerable John Henry Newman interceded with God to cure him. The American, Jack Sullivan, asserted that after addressing Newman he was cured of spinal stenosis in a matter of hours. In 2009, a panel of theologians of late concluded that Sullivan's recovery was the result of his prayer to Newman. According to the Catholic Church, to be deemed a miracle, "a medical recovery must be instantaneous, not attributable to treatment, disappear for good."

The use of the term saint is not exclusive to Christianity. In most religious cultures, there are people who have been recognised within that culture as having fulfilled the highest aspirations of religious teaching. In English, the term saint is often used to translate this idea from many world religions


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This page uses content from the English Wikipedia. The original article was at Saint. The list of authors can be seen in the page history.
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