CHARLES AND ZITA
Charles was beatified on 3rd October 2004, (the last beatification performed by Pope Saint John Paul II), because, “as a statesman and as a Christian, he sought in everything the will of God, recognised it and carried it out” (cf. the Beatification Mass homily), and because of his commitment to peace during the First World War. “Emperor Charles considered his office as a holy service of his people” (ibid). Without anticipating the sovereign judgment of the Church, the Christian life of the couple formed by Charles and Zita of Austria is equally exemplary. It is quite logical to combine the two causes, but they will remain separate at long as the Church has not beatified Zita.
TOWARDS THE CANONISATION OF BLESSED CHARLES :
Since 1949 the Petitioner for the Cause of the Beatification, and since 2004, for the Canonisation of Blessed Charles, is an Austrian association named Gebetsliga für den Völkerfrieden (League of prayer for peace between peoples: shortened to Gebetsliga / League of prayer.
This association does not have a permanent structure in France but is represented by Madame Elizabeth Montfort (secretary for the French Association for the Beatification and Canonisation of Empress Zita).
It organises various events including an annual Mass in memory of Blessed Charles in the church of St Elizabeth of Hungary in Paris.
CENTENARY OF BLESSED CHARLES’ PEACE INITIATIVES :
On 14th October 2017 Pope Francis received the members of the League of Prayer in a private audience. In his discourse the Holy Father also mentioned the Servant of God Zita, who upheld her husband by her love and faith.