Definition of beatification in English:



  • [mass noun] (in the Roman Catholic Church) declaration by the Pope that a dead person is in a state of bliss, constituting a first step towards canonization and permitting public veneration.

    ‘a ceremony of beatification in St Peter's Square’
    • ‘Her beatification, the penultimate step on the way to sainthood, has taken place at surprising speed even in the context of the ‘saint factory’ that is the contemporary Vatican.’
    • ‘Last month the Vatican announced the long-awaited beatification of John XXIII.’
    • ‘Once declared a holy person, the next step is beatification and finally canonisation.’
    • ‘Both the Blet and Cornwall volumes are also part of the current struggle over the possible beatification and canonization of Pius XII.’
    • ‘In the 1990s, a number of bishoprics in Germany, Luxembourg and France began to support his beatification by the Roman Catholic Church.’
    • ‘Thus far, the most vocal opposition to Pius IX's beatification and potential canonization comes from the Jewish community, especially in Italy.’
    • ‘The date chosen for her beatification, Mission Sunday, is the Sunday closest to the twenty-fifth anniversary of the pontificate of John Paul II and to the end of the Year of the Rosary.’
    • ‘His beatification, the first step to sainthood, is expected to take five years, far shorter than normal.’
    • ‘The life of Fr Mullen was featured recently on the RTE programme ‘Nationwide’, which, combined with the book, is hopefully seen as a step towards beatification.’
    • ‘As an outsider, I am of course not entitled to a view about who deserves beatification or canonization.’
    • ‘Their beatification at a ceremony in St Peter's Square marks the final step before actual canonisation through the Roman Catholic Church.’
    • ‘The beatification and canonization of Juan Diego bring into question the integrity of the process followed by the Congregation for the Causes of the Saints.’
    • ‘Solanus Casey is a textbook example of the traditional candidate for beatification and canonization.’
    • ‘The Vatican said at the weekend that a decision in favour of the pope's eventual fast-track beatification would be the ‘exclusive competence’ of his successor.’
    • ‘In some press accounts this act was linked with the expected beatification, not of Pius XII, but of Pius IX.’
    • ‘We wrote a pretty irreverent piece on the Pope's beatification of two dead shepherd children.’
    • ‘After Escrivá's death in 1975, a third of the world's bishops petitioned the Vatican to open his cause for beatification and canonisation.’
    • ‘The Vatican has recognized a miracle that she's believed to have performed, a key step in her beatification.’
    • ‘The problem is that you confused beatification and canonization.’
    • ‘The facts emerged only during the investigation of her life preceding her beatification, which takes place in Rome this month.’


Early 16th century (in the sense ‘action of making blessed’): from Old French, or from ecclesiastical Latin beatificatio(n-), from beatificare make blessed, from Latin beatus blessed.