A saint is a person who is recognized as having an exceptional degree of holiness or likeness or closeness to God. However, the use of the term "saint" depends on the context and denomination. In Roman Catholic, Eastern Orthodox, Anglican, Oriental Orthodox, and Lutheran doctrine, all of their faithful deceased in Heaven are considered to be saints, but some are considered worthy of greater honor or emulation; official ecclesiastical recognition, and consequently veneration, is given to some saints through the process of canonization in the Catholic Church or glorification in the Eastern Orthodox Church.
While the English word saint originated in Christianity, historians of religion now use the appellation "in a more general way to refer to the state of special holiness that many religions attribute to certain people", with the Jewish tzadik, the Islamic walī, the Hindu rishi or Sikh guru, the Shintoist kami, and the Buddhist arhat or bodhisattva also being referred to as saints. Depending on the religion, saints are recognized either by official ecclesiastical declaration, as in the Catholic faith, or by popular acclamation (see Folk saint).
Saint Joan of Arc
: Jeanne d'Arc
; c. 1412 – 30 May 1431) also known as "the Maid of Orleans," is a national heroine
of the Roman Catholic Church
. A peasant girl born in eastern France, she led the French army to several important victories during the Hundred Years' War
, claiming divine guidance, and was indirectly responsible for the coronation of Charles VII
. She was captured by the English, tried by an ecclesiastical
court, and burned at the stake when she was nineteen years old. Twenty-four years later, the Holy See
reviewed the decision of the ecclesiastical court, found her innocent, and declared her a martyr
. She was beatified
in 1909 and later canonized
in 1920. Joan of Arc has remained an important figure in Western culture
. From Napoleon
to the present, French politicians of all leanings have invoked her memory. Major writers and composers who have created works about her include Shakespeare
, and Shaw
. Depictions of her
continue in film, television, video games, song, and dance.
The Saints Wikiproject aims primarily at standardizing the articles about people venerated by some Christians as saints or the blessed and ensuring quality articles. If there is an interest in including saints from religions other than Christianity, please propose those changes on our talk page.