A new poster of Abbot Francis is now available. There are two dimensions: one is A1, that is, 59.4 x 84.1cm and the other is A3, that is, 29.7 x 42.0cm.
If you wish to have one you can order it from the Mariannhill Repository:
Phone: 031 700 4288
031 700 1031
Fax: 031 700 4244


There are two phases in a process of beatification: the diocesan phase and the Roman phase. The process of the Servant of God Abbot Francis (Wendelin) Pfanner, founder of the Mariannhill Monastery and of the Missionaries Sisters of the Most Precious Blood, is still in its diocesan phase.


In the diocesan phase comes a time when the so-called “Historical Commission,” which is made of experts in history and archives, has to study all the writings of Abbot Francis as well as all those about him and his work. This is an important step in the whole process. The sum of this documentation is actually contained in 60 full boxes of documents – thousands of them.


This work progressed regularly and was even almost completed when it was discovered that the Nihil Obstat (a no-objection declaration from the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, Vatican) had not been requested by the previous postulator. This was then done. The Rt Rev. Bishop Stanislaw Dziuba, OPPE, the competent bishop, received the answer of the above-mentioned Congregation at the end of June 2013. This of course delayed considerably the conclusion of the work of the Commission. This, because it could not conclude its report before knowing if it had to study new documents coming from the archives of the Vatican.

The “Historical Commission” was actually able to conclude its report in January 2014 when it met for the last time. This could be achieved after the Superior General certified in writing that he had the moral certainty that all the various archives, including those of the CEP, had been investigated “rite ac plene” (duly and fully) and after the Commission had examined some new and recent documents published in the meantime, this to satisfy itself that nothing important had been missed. The final report was signed during that same meeting after a list of various questions and corrections were made, for the sake of accuracy, and after it was complemented with a substantial bibliography and footnotes.

The next step will consist in formalizing the whole work of the “Historical Commission” in a tribunal session (oath taking and witnessing of the members) to take place in a near future. The list of all the archives investigated will also need to be carefully checked to make sure all are listed.

After that step, the postulator will have to prepare carefully the closing of the diocesan process and the sending of its whole documentation to Rome.

Fr. Yves La Fontaine, CMM