Following successful lobbying by Catholics in New Zealand, Pope Francis has announced this evening that, despite being still alive, All Blacks’ captain Richie McCaw is to be sainted by the Catholic Church following the All Blacks many miraculous victories under his tenure.
Saint McCaw of Canterbury will be canonised by Pope Francis himself in a special ceremony at the Vatican prior to the Rugby World Cup kicking off. “His Eminent Holiness was most impressed by the numerous tales of miracles performed by Saint McCaw and those in his flock,” said a spokesman for the Vatican. “Miracles such as last minute win against Ireland, and the World Cup win of 2011 over the side from the false-church of France, illustrate that he has been blessed by the Lord almighty.”
McCaw himself was nonplussed by the announcement, which came on the back of calls for him to become Prime Minister or New Zealand’s next head of state.
“At least people have stopped accusing my of cheating for five minutes,” McCaw said.
For their part, the Catholic Diocese of Christchurch that lead the campaign was confident the move would boost plummeting church attendance numbers, saying in a statement, “Something has to work, surely?”