In the days that followed the transit of Blessed Fray Anthony, and several sensational miracles were attributed to the intercession of the popular monk.
The events grew between prodigious devotion among all strata of citizenship, in neighboring countries and in more remote districts, and tirelessly promoted the rush of so many pilgrims, the proliferation of stories of miraculous events, the growing enthusiasm, the spread of a cult, which corresponded to a canonization of fact by the people and the general mobilization in order to see the pope recognized the sanctity of Anthony.
To meet this unanimous desire, before he was even one month after the death of the saint, the religious and civil authorities in Rome sent a delegation of prominent religious and secular, to present the petition to the Pope in town, Bishop, clergy, mayor, nobles and people, for the initiation of a regular process on the holiness and miracles attributed to Anthony.
The delegation was received by Pope Gregory IX, the pope who had known him well, Anthony, who had gone to Rome to seek the pope's view on certain matters under discussion between the brothers, and was so impressed by his eloquence and depth of learning that had called "Ark of the Testament" and "Casket of the Sacred Scriptures." The old Pope could not but rejoice to hear the fame of sanctity that surrounded Fray Anthony and seeing such great fruits ripen. So now the College of Cardinals gathered to discuss the request of the embassy Padua and start the process of canonization.
The first phase of this 'process' canon, which was one of the shortest on record since that lasted less than eleven months (July 1231 - May 1232) was the establishment of a diocesan tribunal in Padua, to form what the pope chose the city's bishop, James, Jordan and forced the Benedictine priory, the prior of the Dominican John of Vicenza, giving them the task to listen and consider testimony on the virtues of Anthony and to collect and sift all the episodes considered miraculous and attributed to his intercession.
Completed in February 1232 the work of the tribunal, conducted diligently and expeditiously by the three Commissioners, the bishop and the mayor sent the pope a new delegation, consisting of canons, monks, nobles and magistrates, which transmitted the "dossier" and pleaded effectively cause.
Gregory IX, passed immediately to the second phase of the case, establishing the process and apostolic entrusting the presidency to the cardinal of S. Sabina, John of Abbeville, former Monaco Benedictine abbot of Cluny and St. Pierre d'Abbeville. These led him to complete the process in a very short time and with favorable results. The Pope, who since early May 1232 was in Spoleto, decided that the canonization of Friar Anthony was held May 30, the feast of Pentecost, in the beautiful cathedral of Spoleto, resurrected from the ruins of Barbarossa and devoted some thirty years first (1198) by Innocent III.
The solemn rite of canonization
The long-awaited day finally arrived. Spoleto, already in the days before he met extraordinary animation, lived an unforgettable, unique, and because in itself, and for the many celebrities gathered in the cathedral to pay tribute to Brother Anthony the first honors of the altar: first Gregory IX, wrapped in all the magnificence of his pontifical robes and accompanied by members of the papal court, then the cardinals, bishops and prelates, who were the crown to the pope, then, in addition to heads of various religious orders, a large representation of the Franciscan family led by Brother Elias - elected just days before the Minister General in Rieti in the presence of the pope - and particularly pleased to see recognition of the first saint of the Order after the founder, in addition, representatives of the clergy and the authorities of Padua and many other cities near and far and finally, a crowd of people cheering while the great cathedral, festively decorated in quite exceptional, could not contain.
The solemn pontifical with the rite of canonization took place according to the custom of the time, which included five stages. First, the pope uttered a speech to extol the virtues and merits of Anthony. Then a cardinal or a cleric of the papal court recited the miracles obtained through the intercession of canonizing and authenticated in the process. At this point, and was the climax of the ceremony, Gregory IX stood up and in the name of the SS. Trinity pronounced the solemn formula with which ascribed Anthony among the saints: "In praise and glory of Almighty God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, and in honor of the Roman Church, on earth we venerate the Holy Father Anthony, that the Lord glorified in heaven, having received the favorable opinion of our brothers and other prelates, decreeing that his name is entered in the catalog of saints, and that if they celebrated the festival on June 13.
While the canonization ceremony in Lisbon, the birthplace of the saint, church bells rang in celebration, without moving the hand of man, to the surprise and joy of all the inhabitants.
Pius XII in his apostolic letter "Exultate, Lusitania felix, felix Padua or Gaude, of 16 January, the doctor solemnly proclaimed the universal church, confirming and extending to the whole church to worship the Holy One doctor who already enjoyed the day his canonization, or as recently at the eighth centenary of the birth of the Holy (1995), when the monks of Padua organized a "pilgrimage" of some relics of St. Anthony throughout Italy and as far as seven cities of Umbria: Terni, Foligno, Assisi, Perugia, Gubbio and Spoleto Città di Castello, where the venerable remains paused September 13.
The devotion to Saint Anthony has grown into an unstoppable crescendo, is more alive than ever, has spread worldwide, Saint Anthony continues to attract large crowds and to offer to all, a true friend, his message, his protection and his blessing.
(Bull of canonization).
"... For the Lord says through the prophet: I will make sure that all people celebrate your praises and you Coronini glory and honor, and because He promises that the righteous will shine like the sun in the sight of God is what pious and righteous on earth that surround our worship and praise and honor those whom God crown of holiness and honor in heaven.
This number is the blessed memory of St. Anthony, Order of Friars Minor, who, while he lived on earth, appeared adorned the most beautiful virtue, and now it is in the sky shines the splendor of innumerable miracles, so is clearly demonstrated in his holiness.
Be certain of the virtues of him and his famous miracles, and having the rest Ourselves appreciated once more the holiness of his life and the wonders of his ministry, we have found just and good enter it in the Catalogue of Saints.
Since the Blessed Anthony has become in this world a light so bright that, by the grace of God, he deserved to be placed, not in May, but on the lamp stand immortal of the Catholic Church, We will all pray earnestly exhort you with these apostolic letters, and indeed we command you that by promoting the devotion and veneration of the faithful towards him, celebrated every year on June 13 his party and be sure to celebrate it with great solemnity.
Given in Spoleto on June 23, 1232, the sixth year of Our Pontificate. Pope Gregory IX.