Pope Francis Canonises 19th-century Palestinian Nuns

Canonisations of Mariam Baouardy and Marie Alphonsine Ghattas a symbol of support for Christians facing persecution in Middle East Pope Francis has canonised two 19th-century Palestinian nuns – the first Arabic-speaking saints in the Catholic church – in a ceremony in St Peter’s Square attended by Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas.The canonisations were significant because they can be interpreted as a symbol of support and encouragement for Christians who are facing persecution across the Middle East, a fact that Francis has repeatedly cited as a cause of grave concern.