Italian Teen Who Died Aged Just 15 Could Become Patron Saint Of The Internet
A teenage 'computer genius' who died aged just 15 may become Patron Saint of the Internet.
Italian schoolboy Carlo Acutis taught himself how to programme and built up a website cataloguing miracles from around the world.
Now, the Vatican has credited Carlo with his own miracle - the 2013 healing of a six-year-old Brazilian boy who had a rare condition.
The youngster was reportedly close to death, when a priest began to pray to Carlo on his behalf and has since made a full recovery.
Carlo's mother, Antonia Salzano, told the Los Angeles Times: "The boy was vomiting and risked dying. Then, on the third day of prayers, he started eating."
She added: "We get news of miracles attributed to Carlo all the time.
"One woman was cured of her cancer after attending his funeral, and I heard of two more a few days ago."
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Speaking to NBC, Antonia said her son, who was born in London, was a normal teenager, but that he also had 'a special spiritual life and gifts on the Internet'.
As well as using the Internet to spread the Catholic message, Carlo spent his time helping the homeless and looking out for classmates who were being bullied.
Carlo, who died in 2006, will be beatified in Assisi, Italy, later this year, which is the final step before being made into a saint.
According to the Los Angeles Times, Cardinal Angelo Becciu, who is the head of the Vatican's saint-making department, reckons that Carlo is the perfect person to become patron saint of the Internet.
He said: "That's my hope - he would be an ideal example for all young people."
The Cardinal told Vatican News that when Carlo was close to death he had said: "I want to offer all my suffering for the Lord, for the pope and for the church. I don't want to do purgatory; I want to go straight to heaven."
The Cardinal added: "He said that at 15! A little boy who talks like that strikes us, and I think it encourages everyone not to joke with our faith, but to take it seriously."
For now, Saint Isidore of Seville, a scholar from the 7th century, is considered to be the Patron Saint of the Internet.
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Topics: World News