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Acutis a model of faith for new generations

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carlo acutis relics - The Catholic weekly
Blessed Carlo Acutis’ relic. Photo: George Al-Akiki

An international exhibition and first-class relic of Carlo Acutis has stopped by Sydney on its way to a Tasmanian tour, giving young people a chance to connect with the soon-to-be canonised Italian saint.  

Our Lady of Fatima Caringbah parishioner Brad McKinnon organised for the Vatican exhibition titled “The Eucharistic Miracles of the World,” and relic, a strand of Acutis’ hair, to be on display in the neighbouring De La Salle College Hall from 22-23 June and the previous day for school students. 

“When I found out about Carlo’s exhibition a couple of years ago, I started thinking about how I could get it to come here. I wrote to people in Italy and they wrote back to me with all the processes,” he said. 

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“A lot of people are really interested in Carlo. He’s a phenomenal boy and obviously had a gift, but it’s the miracles themselves he documented I find so striking.  

“In them you can actually see evidence of God’s kingdom, that outside the scriptures there is that evidence for the existence of God.” 

Acutis, who died at the age of 15 in 2006, designed websites and published information on Eucharist-related miracles based on his own research. 

carlo acutis relics - The Catholic weekly
Students looking at the display of Eucharistic Miracles documented by Blessed Carlo Acutis. Photo: George Al-Akiki.

More than 140 of those from 22 different countries, all recognised by the Catholic Church, are documented in a photographic display for exhibition viewers to explore. 

McKinnon contacted the college’s assistant principal and dean of mission Angela Porro, who last year visited Carlo’s tomb in Assisi, about hosting it in Sydney.  

“Kids hear of other, older saints but they oftentimes don’t resonate with them, whereas this is a living example,” he told The Catholic Weekly. 

“They see that he had the same interests that they have. He had a PlayStation, he loved soccer, Pokémon and animals, but at the same time he also had a love for God.  

“He made it his mission to make the world a better place in his unique way, and I think our young men can emulate that.” 

Porro led group discussions in front of the relic, where students had the opportunity to kneel and pray. 

Carlo’s a shining presence in this school community that’s influenced how we understand our role as leaders,” said Year 11 student Quentin Lassauniere. 

“As he’s so fresh in history, younger people can relate to it more and it gets rid of the idea that saints are an ancient concept from way back when,” added fellow student Jayden McConnell. 

McKinnon says it’s evident Acutis is the new model of sainthood for the next generation. 

“For me as a father with a 17 and 14-year-old, I see a world where everybody is aggressively against the possibility God. If you would have told me the world would be like this 25, 30 years ago, I would have said no way, not in Australia,” he said. 

De La Salle Catholic College students at the exhibition. Photo: George Al-Akiki.

“At the same time, I think if you can show people evidence, particularly young kids, you can make a difference.” 

The exhibition and relic will make their way to Our Lady of the Angels Church in Rouse Hill this weekend 29-30 June before its Tasmanian tour. 

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