From Popes To Saints (VIDEO)

By Stephanie Parkinson
By Emma Koch
By Eric Dutkiewicz

July 5, 2013 Updated Jan 8, 2014 at 12:17 PM EST

VATICAN CITY (www.incnow.tv) - An historic and exciting day for Roman Catholics around the world as the Vatican announces the two former pontiffs will be declared saints.

Pope Francis approved a second miracle needed for Blessed Pope John Paul II to be made a saint. The Vatican has not released details on John Paul II's second miracle, but the approval was the final step for John Paul II, who reigned as pope from 1978 until his death in 2005. He was beatified in 2011.

Pope Francis used Vatican provisions to waived a second miracle requirement for Blessed Pope John XXIII, who reigned from 1958 to 1963. John XXIII launched the Second Vatican Council in 1962, which brought major reform to the Roman Catholic Church. He was beatified in 2000.

Dr. Matthew Bunson, a Catholic Church historian, says the process involves a long investigation into both popes before they are formally declared saints. That is to ensure they practiced heroic virtues.

A ceremony is expected later this year.

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