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The “first millennial saint” and 14 Blesseds approved for canonization

Fifteen-year-old Carlo Acutis will become the Catholic Church's first millennial saint. Vatican Pool/Getty Images

The College of Cardinals announced on Monday that Carlo Acutis, the first millennial saint, along with 14 other blessed individuals, will be canonized.

The approval was formalized in the Vatican’s Apostolic Palace during an Ordinary Public Consistory.

According to Vatican News, Pope Francis presided over the mid-morning prayer of the Liturgy of the Hours with the Cardinals residing in Rome before reviewing the lives and miracles of the Blessed.

Carlo Acutis, who passed away at the age of 15, has become a beacon of faith among the youth in the Philippines, where secularism poses significant challenges.

His canonization is anticipated during the 2025 Holy Year of the Catholic Church.

Born in 1991 in Italy, Acutis was a computer programmer who died of leukemia on October 12, 2006.

He was a devotee of Eucharistic miracles and Marian apparitions, which he cataloged on a website he created before his death.

His relics rest in Assisi, the home of St. Francis, to whom Blessed Carlo was deeply devoted. Known for his charity, Carlo was described as “welcoming and caring towards the poorest, helping the homeless, the needy, and immigrants with money saved from his weekly allowance,” according to the Peroratio.

Among the new saints, the largest group were martyred in Damascus, Syria, in 1860, known as the “Martyrs of Damascus.” This group includes Fr. Manuel Ruiz López, OFM, his seven companions, and three Maronite laymen: Abdel Moati, Francis, and Raphael Massabki.

All 11 were killed in hatred of the faith during the 1860 Syrian Civil War, with thousands of Christians being massacred by Muslim militiamen. The Massabki brothers and the eight Franciscans were martyred on the night of July 9, 1860, while praying inside the Franciscan church in Damascus.

Also approved for canonization were Fr. Giuseppe Allamano and Sr. Elena Guerra, both Italians. Fr. Allamano founded the Consolata Missionaries in the early 20th century, and his ideas led to the establishment of World Mission Day by Pope Pius XI.

Sr. Guerra dedicated her life to the education of Chinese and African girls and founded the Oblates of the Holy Spirit in the late 19th century.

Canadian-born Sr. Marie-Léonie Paradis, who founded the Little Sisters of the Holy Family in the early 20th century, was also approved for canonization.

The 14 new saints will be officially inscribed in the List of Saints on Sunday, October 20, 2024.


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