di Davide Marchetta
Vatican City, June 18 - The process of declaring former pope John Paul II a saint took a major step forward Tuesday, when the board of theologians of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints approved his second miracle. Now, the proclamation of his sainthood needs only the approval of the commission of cardinals and bishops and the final signature of Pope Francis, Vatican sources have told ANSA. It seems likely that John Paul II - who was beatified on May 1, 2011 - will be proclaimed a saint on October 20, approximately the 35th anniversary of his election as pope. The first miracle attribute to John Paul was an "inexplicable cure" - the first of two steps on the path to sainthood. The pontiff's successor Pope Benedict XVI, who abdicated earlier this year, sanctioned the beatification after a Vatican commission officially attributed as a miracle the inexplicable recovery of a French nun, Sister Marie Simon-Pierre, from Parkinson's Disease. The Vatican ruled that that came through the intervention of John Paul II. The second miracle that will be attributed to him remains a closely guarded secret but sources say it will "amaze the world". The Catholic Church has been keenly awaiting the canonisation of the charismatic John Paul II, one of the most popular popes in history, since he died in 2005 aged 84.