The Church in the US could have another saint if US Army chaplain Father Emil Kapaun's cause for beatification is accepted by the Congregation for the Causes of Saints.
The work of getting the relevant materials ready has been under the able hands of Father John Hotze, the bishop's delegate for the study of Father Kapaun's beatification and canonization. A priest of the Diocese of Wichta since 1940, Father Kapaun served in the US Army from 1944 until his death in 1951. In fact, he died in a prison camp hospital on May 23, 1951 (he was born on April 20, 1916). The Diocese of Wichita has the competence to present the dossier of his life when it officially opened the cause for his beatification on June 29, 2008.
Father Emil Kapaun, a native of Pilsen, Kansas, served in the Korean War as a US Army chaplain, and was known for his selflessness. Kapaun is on record for courageously rescuing wounded soldiers from the battlefield, risking his own life to prevent their execution at the hands of the Chinese. The care of the priest saved the lives of sick and injured soldiers.
The well-known Dr. Andrea Ambrosi, is going to shepherd the Kapaun case. He'll be the person who will present Kapaun's case, all 8,268 documents about the chaplain's deeds and sacrifices in the Korean War, to the Congregation of Saints at the Vatican said based on what he knows thus far, Father Kapaun has a good chance at being beatified. Ambrosi said: "He showed that there was not just a devil working on the battlefields of the war, but something else." The face of Christ.
Two miracles are being studied.
- In 2006, Avery Gerleman, then 12 years-old, near death for 87 days. She recovered after her parents prayed to Kapaun.
- In October 2008, Chase Kear, a college track athlete, medically inexplicable, he survived a severe pole vaulting accident. His skull was fractured in several crucial places and caused bleeding on his brain. The prognosis was very grim. Family prayed for Father Emil's intercession.