Pope Francis manipulated the situation to get canonising Pope John Paul II.  That somebody would use a person who was ill to engineer wonders as an excuse for doing that is horrific.  It shows no real empathy for the sick.  Evil John Paul had no sympathy at all for clerical abuse victims.

Here is what the expert has to say.

Investigative Files by Joe Nickell Volume 39.2, March/April 2015 exposed the miracles used by the Church to declare Pope John Paul II a saint.

He points out that the Church now looks for healing miracles."The current preference is for healing miracles—no doubt in part because they are easier to obtain and less likely to involve magic tricks."  It is easier to fool people with nature's wonders.

The Church accepted the cure of Sister Marie Simon-Pierre Normand as a sign to canonise John Paul.  She prayed to him and her Parkinson's disease vanished in 2005.  She stopped her medications there and then. Nickell links this to the fact that she loved the Pope and may have been absorbing and suffering from a "copycat phenomenon" for her illness was very like the Parkinson's suffered by the late pope.

He wrote,

In June 2001, no doubt well aware of speculation that the pope’s tremors indicated Parkinson’s, she was herself diagnosed with the disease. Subsequently, she said, “It was difficult for me to watch John Paul II on television.” Engaging in magical thinking, she added, “However, I felt very close to him in prayer and knew he could understand what I was going through.”

She states that “The disease had affected the whole left side of my body, creating great difficulties for me as I am left-handed.” The location was noteworthy, since, as we have seen, the pope had been observed by 1996 with an uncontrollable tremor in his left hand.

“After three years,” she says (the pope’s diagnosis being acknowledged by the Vatican in 2003) she experienced “an aggravation of the symptoms.”

Strikingly, beginning on April 2, 2005—the very day of the pope’s death—her condition “began to worsen” and continued to do so “week by week.”

...Parkinson’s disease is a brain disorder that usually afflicts the elderly, being most prevalent among those aged seventy-five to eighty-five (Taber’s 2001, 1519). Its common symptoms include tremors, slow movement, stiffness, cramped handwriting, and other signs. However, it can be difficult to accurately diagnose because there are other conditions with similar symptoms, according to the National Parkinson Foundation (“About Parkinson’s” 2006).

As reported by The Guardian (citing a Polish newspaper), three years after Sister Marie claimed to have been miraculously healed she had relapsed. The paper stated “that the 49-year-old nun had become sick again with the same illness” (Hooper 2010). One of the doctors investigating her case was of the opinion that she had not actually suffered from Parkinson’s, observing that a similar nervous disease could go into remission. Whatever the actual facts of the matter, the nun’s “miracle” claim was ultimately accepted, and in January 2011 Pope John Paul II was beatified.

The other miracle accepted as a sign he was a saint was the aneurysm of Floribeth Mora Diaz.

Nickell wrote

Given the paucity of information released about Diaz’s diagnosis, it may be that the “inexplicable” nature of her alleged aneurysm is due to a lack of conclusive evidence for it in the first place. In any event, the argument from medical inexplicability is an “argument from ignorance,” pure and simple.

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Joe Nickell

Joe Nickell, Ph.D., is Senior Research Fellow of the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry (CSI) and "Investigative Files" Columnist for SKEPTICAL INQUIRER. A former stage magician, private investigator, and teacher, he is author of numerous books, including Inquest on the Shroud of Turin (1998), Pen, Ink and Evidence (2003), Unsolved History (2005) and Adventures in Paranormal Investigation (2007). He has appeared in many television documentaries and has been profiled in The New Yorker and on NBC's Today Show. His personal website is at


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