A LONDON-BORN 15-year-old is on the path to becoming the patron saint of the internet once he is beatified in October.
Carlo Acutis, who died in 2006 from leukaemia in Milan, Italy, aged 15, is to become one of the Catholic Church’s very few teenagers to be made a saint.
The computer genius was credited with the miracle of healing a Brazilian boy who recovered from a rare illness after praying to him, asking him to communicate with God.
Now that the Vatican has formally attributed the miracle to him, Carlo will be beatified where he is buried in Assisi, Italy, this October.
Beatification is the declaration by the Pope that a dead person is in heaven yet has the ability to intervene in earthly affairs on behalf of those who pray in their name. It also allows Catholics to venerate them.
This is the final step before sainthood, which is granted after a second miracle is confirmed by a council of scientists.
Once that happens, Carlo will be canonised and become the patron saint of the internet.
Carlo came from humble roots, but had an affinity with computers.
As a child, he taught himself how to program using the family’s old computer and built a website cataloging miracles around the world.
He also supported classmates who were bullied and helped the homeless during his short life.
His mother, Antonia Salzano, said that her son was a normal teenager who liked playing video games, but one who also had “a special spiritual life and gifts on the internet.”
“When he contracted leukaemia at age 15, his faith helped him to see his suffering differently,” Brenden Thompson, the CEO of Catholic Voices. said.
At Carlo’s funeral, the church was “so flooded that many people had to remain outside,” his mother said.
Catholics from around the world then petitioned the Vatican, calling for the teen to be named a saint.
According to the Pew Research Centre, the Catholic Church recognizes only around 10,000 saints.
If there is a second miracle in his name Carlo will join the list of only 147 child saints including St. Joan of Arc.