PEORIA, Ill. — You can now visit Archbishop Fulton Sheen’s tomb.

After a lengthy legal battle in New York, Sheen’s remains arrived at the Cathedral of St. Mary in Peoria on Thursday.

The remains are encased in a marble monument inside the Cathedral. The tomb is located at the side altar dedicated to Blessed Mother Mary, Our Lady of Perpetual Help.

WMBD spoke with Archbishop Fulton Sheen’s niece, Joan Sheen Cunningham, who says the next step is his beatification.

“This was a necessary thing and it finally happened, and it’s been a long time. And the next step, would be wonderful if we heard soon, so we can make plans and everything. And all the relatives from all over can all come,” Sheen Cunningham said.

Joan Sheen Cunningham

Sheen Cunningham says this is a dream come true.

“It’s very exciting because it’s been a long haul to get to this place. It’s really, it’s something I didn’t know if it would ever happen,” said Sheen Cunningham.

Following the rulings in the New York State of Appeals, the Catholic Church had to receive civil permits to make the transfer.

Sheen was born in El Paso in 1895 and died in 1979.

  • Bishop Daniel Jenky is inviting the community to visit Sheen’s new tomb this weekend:
  • Friday through 4 p.m.
  • Saturday, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
  • Sunday, 9 a.m. – 2 p.m.

There will be a permanent schedule of visiting hours released at a later time.