VATICAN CITY (ChurchMilitant.com) - Combining his love of God and skills with a computer to inspire faith in the Real Presence, an Italian teenager is on the way to beatification.
First approved by medical experts in November 2019, a miraculous healing attributed to the intercession of Ven. Carlo Acutis was approved by the Vatican on Friday.
The Vatican's official approval means Acutis can now be beatified — the final stage before being canonized as a saint.
Born in 1991 in London, Acutis died in 2006 at the age of 15 after suffering from leukemia.
Based on his wishes, Acutis' body was moved to Assisi, Italy where he loved to visit most and where he will probably be beatified.
Acutis heroically united his pain to the Lord's for the salvation of souls, saying, "I offer all the suffering I will have to suffer for the Lord, for the Pope and the Church."
He was pleased to die with the knowledge he had used his time on earth to serve God, saying, "I'm happy to die because I've lived my life without wasting even a minute of it doing things that wouldn't have pleased God."
Acutis was an otherwise ordinary teenager who had an interest in graphic design, computer programming and web development, but his life plan was to follow the Lord.
Convinced people would flock to churches if they believed in the Real Presence, Acutis began at age 11 a project to catalog eucharistic miracles throughout the world.
"The more Eucharist we receive, the more we will become like Jesus, so that on this earth we will have a foretaste of Heaven," he wrote.
The Church has approved 136 eucharistic miracles that occurred in different countries down through the centuries, all of which are now accessible as a "virtual museum" on a website Acutis made combining his love of God with his interest in computers.
One of those eucharistic miracles occurred in Acutis' beloved Assisi almost 800 years ago.
On a Friday in September, Saint Clare of Assisi turned back Saracen soldiers.
Acutis' website takes the story from Tommaso da Celano's The History of Saint Clare Virgin.
Saracens had approached the gates of Assisi, invaded San Damiano and entered the convent.
Prostrating herself before the Lord, [St. Clare] spoke tearfully to her Christ: "Behold, my Lord, is it possible you want to deliver into the hands of pagans your defenseless handmaids, whom I have taught out of love for you? I pray you, Lord, protect these, your handmaids, whom I cannot now save by myself." Suddenly a voice like a child's resounded in her ears from the tabernacle: "I will always protect you!"
Saint Clare drove the Saracens back by showing them the Sacred Host.
Dr. Francesca Consolini is the current postulator — the person who presents a case for someone's canonization or beatification — for Carlo Acutis.
In a 2018 interview, she said, "Carlo wasn't born a saint, but he worked hard at it. Chastity for him was a result of friendship with Christ. He understood, and that's what he told whoever met him, that to be faithful friends of Christ one must meet certain demands."
"Naturally, this was difficult for him. It was difficult, but he passed the tests with flexibility. His family and friends highlight his simplicity and capacity to pray in a not-so-Christian environment," added Consolini.
The miracle attributed to Acutis' intercession occurred in 2013 when a Brazilian child with a pancreatic anomaly was cured of the irregularity without any medical explanation.