What happens when those powers look at whether there is historical evidence that Jesus actually lived? Do they say “Well, let’s just forget about the whole thing.”
And Cecil mentions one important component of the Philomena oddity – the cult was indeed abetted by a lot of men and women of great reputation for piety. To this day the Philomenaphiles make their case with a lot of appeal-to-authority quotes from folks like St. John Vianney of Ars and the various pre-Lateran-Treaty Popes. Something was going on with Philomenta that took on a life of its own – seems the time was such that the pious badly wanted, nay, needed, a new Saint with the characteristics of Philomena. One kinda hopes that XXI-st century Popes can whitstand “Popular Acclaim” better – e.g. the cries of “Santo Subito!” for immediate canonization of JP2, at his funerals.