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Boy born in London who died at age 15 became the first millennial saint

A London-born teenager who died of leukemia in 2006 will become the Catholic Church’s first millennial saint, after Pope Francis formally recognized a second miracle attributed to Carlo Acutis.

The late teenager, who moved with his family to Milan, Italy, as a child, is known as the patron saint of the Internet among Roman Catholics and is known as “God’s influencer.”

According to a Vatican statement issued on Thursday, the miracle being recognized involves a Costa Rican woman, Liliana, whose daughter Valeria Valverde, 21, suffered a serious head injury after a bicycle accident in Florence on July 2, 2022.

The Vatican says Valeria underwent critical surgery and had little chance of survival according to her doctors. Liliana reportedly prayed at Carlo Acutis’ tomb in Assisi on July 8, while her secretary had already begun praying to him.

That same day, according to the Vatican, Valeria began to breathe on her own and the next day she regained some movement and speech. On July 18, a CT scan showed that the bleeding had disappeared and on August 11 she entered rehab, making rapid progress.

Pope Francis has announced a meeting of cardinals to discuss the sanctification of Acutis, according to the Vatican statement.

In 2020, Acutis became the youngest person in the modern era to be beatified after supposedly curing a Brazilian child, Mattheus Vianna, of a serious birth defect that made feeding difficult.

Acutis created a website to catalog miracles and managed websites for local Catholic organizations in Italy before his death from leukemia in 2006. He was 15 years old.

“Carlo was the bright answer to the dark side of the Internet,” said his mother Antonia Acutis. The New York Times in 2020 after being beatified and put on the path to sainthood in the Catholic Church.

Acutis said that at the age of seven he began attending Mass daily. The life of his son, he said, “can be used to show how the Internet can be used for good, to spread good things.”

After Acutis’ death, the Diocese of Assisi petitioned the Vatican for his sainthood. They examined his emails and his computer search history and interviewed witnesses while hoping for miracles to support his cause.

In February of that year, Pope Francis credited Acutis with the miraculous healing of the Brazilian boy with a pancreatic malformation after the boy reportedly touched one of Carlo’s shirts.

According to a 2017 report from the National Catholic Registry, only 120 of the more than 10,000 saints recognized by the Roman Catholic Church died as children or teenagers.

The Vatican has not yet announced a date for the formal canonization ceremony.

Before Acutis, the last saint born in England was Cardinal John Henry Newman, who died in 1890 at the age of 89. He was canonized by Pope Francis in 2019. According to the Catholic News AgencyThe first miracle attributed to Cardinal Newman was the inexplicable healing of a deacon with a serious spinal condition.

The second involved a pregnant American woman who recovered from a life-threatening diagnosis after praying for Newman’s intercession, and doctors were unable to explain her sudden recovery.

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