saints, canonization, god, modern-day saints

Bernie Sanders, Steve Irwin, Dolly Parton.

It's hard to pin down the exact number of people who have been canonized or beatified by the Catholic church, but scholars say the number may be beyond 10,000. The most recent canonization by Pope Francis was Margherita della Metola in April of this year.

Margherita della Metola was an Italian Roman Catholic and professed member of the Third Order of Saint Dominic who lived 1287 to 1320.

A satirical Facebook page for God a.k.a. The Good God Above has nearly 4 million followers and he asked them an important question on November 1: "I have not canonized any new saints in a while. Any suggestions?"

via God/Facebook

The post received more than 9,000 responses of people debating which modern-day heroes are so holy they deserve to become saints. We decided to rank the top 20 vote-getters based on how many likes they received after being nominated by a commenter.

The number one vote-getter won by a landslide.

(Note: Some people were mentioned multiple times, so the numbers on the posted comments aren't the only numbers that we considered.)

Here are the top 20 people "God's" followers believe should become saints.



Alex Trebek (1940 - 2020)

via Facebook/The Good God Above

"Who should be a saint?" for $800, Alex. Trebek was the host of "Jeopardy!" for 37 years and one of the most recognizable TV personalities of all time. He should be canonized for his calm presence on one of TV's most tense game shows.

Lemmy Kilmister (1945 - 2015)

Ian Fraser Kilmister was known worldwide by one name: Lemmy. The lead singer and bassist of Motörhead should be canonized for partying as hard as he rocked. "I don't do regrets," Lemmy once said. "Regrets are pointless. It's too late for regrets. You've already done it, haven't you? You've lived your life. No point wishing you could change it."

George Takei (1937 - )

Takei has had one of the greatest second acts in American life. He became a sci-fi legend and one of the first Asian-American TV stars in the late '60s as Sulu on "Star Trek." In the social media era he's become one of the most popular faces of trending content. He should be canonized for the incredible work he's done for the LGBTQ community.

Pope Francis (1936 - )

Born Jorge Mario Bergoglio, Pope Francis has been one of the most popular and controversial Popes of the modern era for his unapologetically progressive views. He should be canonized for his work on climate change reform.

Sir Terry Pratchett (1948 - 2015)

Pratchett was an English humorist, satirist and author of comic fantasy novels, including the "Discworld" series. He should be canonized for celebrating all of the quirky and strange things that happen in "real life."

Brandon Stanton (1984 - )

Stanton is an American author, photographer and blogger best known for "Humans of New York," a photoblog and book. He should be canonized for his portraits of strangers who share intimate stories of strength, addiction, redemption, regret and love.

David Bowie (1947 - 2016)

Bowie is one of the most enigmatic performers of the past century whose work highlighted the concept of the outsider, whether it was an astronaut in space or someone living outside of traditional gender norms. Bowie should be canonized for showing humanity that there are no limitations on who they can be and how they can change.

Sir David Attenborough (1926 - )

Sir David Attenborough is the undisputed father of the nature documentary. Throughout his eight-decade career, his gentle, awestruck voice has served as humanity's guide to nature. He should be canonized for "Life on Earth," his series that examined the role of evolution in nature.

Dr. Anthony Fauci (1940 - )

Dr. Fauci, the director of the National Institutes of Health, has come to the forefront of American life for his leadership during the COVID-19 pandemic. He should be canonized for not losing his mind during former president Trump's long, rambling and factually inaccurate COVID briefings in 2020.

Ruth Bader Ginsburg (1933 - 2020)

The "Notorious RBG" became a liberal, feminist icon for championing women's rights as a member of the U.S. Supreme Court from 1993 to her death. She should be canonized for her strongly worded dissents in women's rights cases.

Robin Williams (1961 - 2014)

Williams was one of the most unique performers the world has ever seen. He completely changed American comedy with his intense, high-energy improvisational comedy performances on stage, TV and in film. He was also a talented actor, winning critical acclaim in films such as "Good Morning Vietnam," "Mrs. Doubtfire" and "Dead Poets Society." He should be canonized for his child-like love of whimsy.

Bob Ross (1942 - 1995)

Ross was the creator and host of "The Joy of Painting," an instructional television program that aired from 1983 to 1994 on PBS. His infectious love of art, distinctive hair and gentle voice made him the ultimate calming presence. He should be canonized for teaching the world how to paint "happy little trees."

Elon Musk (1971 - )

Musk is the closest we'll have to a living Bond villain. He's a visionary billionaire who isn't shy about wanting to change the world, from how we travel to spend money. Like him or not, he should be canonized for creating the Tesla, a high-performance electric car that brought EVs into the mainstream.

George Carlin (1937 to 2008)

Carlin came to prominence as a counter-culture comic in the '70s where he was famous for outlining the "seven dirty words you can't say on television." However, clips of him from the late '90s and early 2000s where he eviscerates American greed, materialism and entitlement have made him still relevant to this day. He should be canonized for this incredible clip where he discusses the fact that there's a big club and "you're not in it."

"It's called the American Dream because you have to be asleep to believe it."

George Carlin - It's A BIG Club & You Ain't In It!

Fred Rogers (1928 - 2003)

Rogers touched the lives of countless children from 1968 to 2001 as the host of PBS' "Mister Rogers' Neighborhood." The puppeteer, songwriter and Presbyterian minister revolutionized children's television and should be canonized for changing the way we think about the inner lives of young children.

Jimmy Carter (1924 - )

Carter served as president of the United States from 1977 to 1981 and his biggest accomplishment was the Camp David Accords that ended the Israeli-Egyptian disputes. His post-presidency life has been dedicated to humanitarianism causes through the Carter Center and Habitat for Humanity. Carter was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2002.

Carter should be canonized for his humility and commitment to service.

Steve Irwin (1962 - 2006)

The "Crocodile Hunter" wowed audiences by fearlessly tangling with deadly snakes, spiders, lizards and crocodiles. But at his heart, he was a true lover of nature and wildlife, and an educator who shared his knowledge and enthusiasm for animals with millions. Irwin should be canonized for his many contributions to the field of wildlife education and conservation.

Dolly Parton (1946 - )

Parton is such a national treasure that when they began pulling down Confederate statues in Tennessee a few years back, there was a petition to have them replaced with statues of Dolly. As a musician, Parton has sung some of the biggest hits in country music history, including "I Will Always Love You" and "Islands in the Stream." But she has also been a generous philanthropist, helping charities that benefit children and veterans.

If you got the COVID-19 vaccine you should thank Dolly. In 2020, she donated $1 million to help fund vaccine research at Vanderbilt University Medical Center.

Dolly should be canonized for creating the Imagination Library that has donated more than 100 million books to children.

Bernie Sanders (1941 - )

Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders is one of the most beloved political figures in the United States because he has always stood on the side of the oppressed and the working class regardless of whether it was popular. He's refused to be bought by Wall Street and has stood up against the Department of Defense, the fossil fuel industry, drug companies and private prison industries.

He should be canonized for his relentless quest to provide healthcare for all Americans.

Keanu Reeves (1964 - )

Reeves is a beloved figure in Hollywood because of his kind, down-to-earth nature. There are countless anecdotes around the internet of Reeves going out of his way to please a fan or inviting a member of the paparazzi to his table to sit with him during dinner. "The internet's boyfriend" is also a gentleman who never touches women when taking a photo with them.

Reeves should be canonized for quietly donating millions to children's hospitals.

Leah Menzies/TikTok

Leah Menzies had no idea her deceased mother was her boyfriend's kindergarten teacher.

When you start dating the love of your life, you want to share it with the people closest to you. Sadly, 18-year-old Leah Menzies couldn't do that. Her mother died when she was 7, so she would never have the chance to meet the young woman's boyfriend, Thomas McLeodd. But by a twist of fate, it turns out Thomas had already met Leah's mom when he was just 3 years old. Leah's mom was Thomas' kindergarten teacher.

The couple, who have been dating for seven months, made this realization during a visit to McCleodd's house. When Menzies went to meet his family for the first time, his mom (in true mom fashion) insisted on showing her a picture of him making a goofy face. When they brought out the picture, McLeodd recognized the face of his teacher as that of his girlfriend's mother.

Menzies posted about the realization moment on TikTok. "Me thinking my mum (who died when I was 7) will never meet my future boyfriend," she wrote on the video. The video shows her and McLeodd together, then flashes to the kindergarten class picture.

“He opens this album and then suddenly, he’s like, ‘Oh my God. Oh my God — over and over again,” Menzies told TODAY. “I couldn’t figure out why he was being so dramatic.”

Obviously, Menzies is taking great comfort in knowing that even though her mother is no longer here, they can still maintain a connection. I know how important it was for me to have my mom accept my partner, and there would definitely be something missing if she wasn't here to share in my joy. It's also really incredible to know that Menzies' mother had a hand in making McLeodd the person he is today, even if it was only a small part.

@speccylee

Found out through this photo in his photo album. A moment straight out of a movie 🥲

♬ iris - 🫶

“It’s incredible that that she knew him," Menzies said. "What gets me is that she was standing with my future boyfriend and she had no idea.”

Since he was only 3, McLeodd has no actual memory of Menzies' mother. But his own mother remembers her as “kind and really gentle.”

The TikTok has understandably gone viral and the comments are so sweet and positive.

"No the chills I got omggg."

"This is the cutest thing I have watched."

"It’s as if she remembered some significance about him and sent him to you. Love fate 😍✨"

In the caption of the video, she said that discovering the connection between her boyfriend and her mom was "straight out of a movie." And if you're into romantic comedies, you're definitely nodding along right now.

Menzies and McLeodd made a follow-up TikTok to address everyone's positive response to their initial video and it's just as sweet. The young couple sits together and addresses some of the questions they noticed pop up. People were confused that they kept saying McLeodd was in kindergarten but only 3 years old when he was in Menzies' mother's class. The couple is Australian and Menzies explained that it's the equivalent of American preschool.

They also clarified that although they went to high school together and kind of knew of the other's existence, they didn't really get to know each other until they started dating seven months ago. So no, they truly had no idea that her mother was his teacher. Menzies revealed that she "didn't actually know that my mum taught at kindergarten."

"I just knew she was a teacher," she explained.

She made him act out his reaction to seeing the photo, saying he was "speechless," and when she looked at the photo she started crying. McLeodd recognized her mother because of the pictures Menzies keeps in her room. Cue the "awws," because this is so cute, I'm kvelling.

A simple solution for all ages, really.

School should feel like a safe space. But after the tragic news of yet another mass shooting, many children are scared to death. As a parent or a teacher, it can be an arduous task helping young minds to unpack such unthinkable monstrosities. Especially when, in all honesty, the adults are also terrified.

Katelyn Campbell, a clinical psychologist in South Carolina, worked with elementary school children in the aftermath of the Sandy Hook shooting. She recently shared a simple idea that helped then, in hopes that it might help now.

The psychologist tweeted, “We had our kids draw pictures of scenery that made them feel calm—we then hung them up around the school—to make the ‘other kids who were scared’ have something calm to look at.”



“Kids, like adults, want to feel helpful when they feel helpless,” she continued, saying that drawing gave them something useful to do.

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Alberto Cartuccia Cingolani wows audiences with his amazing musical talents.

Mozart was known for his musical talent at a young age, playing the harpsichord at age 4 and writing original compositions at age 5. So perhaps it's fitting that a video of 5-year-old piano prodigy Alberto Cartuccia Cingolani playing Mozart has gone viral as people marvel at his musical abilities.

Alberto's legs can't even reach the pedals, but that doesn't stop his little hands from flying expertly over the keys as incredible music pours out of the piano at the 10th International Musical Competition "Città di Penne" in Italy. Even if you've seen young musicians play impressively, it's hard not to have your jaw drop at this one. Sometimes a kid comes along who just clearly has a gift.

Of course, that gift has been helped along by two professional musician parents. But no amount of teaching can create an ability like this.

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