Proving you can be both ‘normal’ and a saint

Decrease font size
Increase font size
Print this page
Email to friend
Share to Facebook
Share to Twitter
Home > Media > News > Proving you can be both ‘normal’ and a saint
Proving you can be both ‘normal’ and a saint

By Tomasz Juszczak, Director of the Office of Youth Evangelisation

The idea that each one of us is called to be a saint is something many of us might struggle with –particularly when so many examples we have seen have been religious sisters, brothers or priests who have done extraordinary things and are often accompanied by crowds and miracles. Thanks to the ‘Little Way’ of Saint Therese and the many lay and modern saints and blesseds recognised in recent times, sainthood is starting to seem a little more accessible. And now, those computer-loving, YouTube-watching, web-surfing, gaming types among us have a friend in heaven to call on.

Pope Francis has just declared that Venerable Carlo Acutis is about to be beatified. This means he is one miracle away from official sainthood. Carlo was a boy who was fascinated by computers and the internet. He was known as a bit of a computer geek and really enjoyed film, hanging out with friends, playing video games and editing short funny clips. He’s basically like any other normal teen his age. This should give the rest of us great hope!

While Carlo Acutis loved the same things any other young guy did, there was one thing that propelled him forward on his journey toward holiness: he loved Jesus above all. He wasn’t a top theologian, didn’t start a religious order, wasn’t a rich philanthropist or a deep mystic. He simply loved Jesus and wanted to put Him first in an otherwise ordinary teenage life. Since receiving his First Holy Communion at age seven, he would go to daily Mass and weekly Confession of his own accord. He had such a deep love for the Eucharist that he was inspired to create an online library of Eucharistic miracles around the world. Carlo also had a great devotion to Our Lady, praying the rosary every day.

Carlo’s deep interior life naturally overflowed into other parts of his life. He loved his friends and had a great care for others. He always stood up for those who were being bullied and look after friends who were going through difficult times, inviting them over his place regularly.
Personally, I look at this and think: “That’s not entirely impossible.” It’s a type of normal, simple holiness that might just be achievable. As much as I love the great saints with their extraordinary lives, Carlo gives me hope that God can make saints in the most ‘ordinary’ ways, as long as we do one thing: keep Him at the centre.