In his homily, Cardinal Vallini, the pontifical legate for the Basilica of St. Francis, hailed Acutis as a model of how young people can use technology at the service of the Gospel to "reach as many people as possible and help them know the beauty of friendship with the Lord."
For Carlo, Jesus was "the strength of his life and the purpose of everything he did," the cardinal said.
"He was convinced that to love people and do them good you need to draw energy from the Lord. In this spirit he was very devoted to Our Lady," he added.
"His ardent desire was also that of attracting as many people to Jesus, making himself herald of the Gospel above all with the example of life."
At a young age, Acutis taught himself how to program and went on to create websites cataloguing the world's Eucharistic miracles and Marian apparitions.
"The Church rejoices, because in this very young Blessed the Lord's words are fulfilled: 'I have chosen you and appointed you to go and bear much fruit.' And Carlo 'went' and brought the fruit of holiness, showing it as a goal reachable by all and not as something abstract and reserved for a few," the cardinal said.
"He was an ordinary boy, simple, spontaneous, likeable … he loved nature and animals, he played football, he had many friends of his age, he was attracted by modern means of social communication, passionate about computer science and, self-taught, he built websites to transmit the Gospel, to communicate values and beauty," he said.
Assisi is celebrating the beatification of Carlo Acutis with more than two weeks of liturgies and events Oct. 1-17. During this time images of a young Acutis standing with a giant monstrance containing the Eucharist can be seen in front of churches all around the city of St. Francis and St. Clare.
People stood in line to pray before the tomb of Carlo Acutis, located in Assisi's Sanctuary of the Spoliation in the Church of St. Mary Major. The church extended its hours until midnight throughout the beatification weekend to allow as many people as possible to venerate Acutis, with the social distancing measures in place to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.
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Fr. Boniface Lopez, a Franciscan Capuchin based at the church, told CNA that he noted that many people who visited Acutis' tomb also took advantage of the opportunity to go to confession, which is being offered in many languages throughout the 17 days when Acutis' body is visible for venation.
"Many people are coming to see Carlo to ask for his blessing … also many young people; they come for confessions, they come because they want to change their lives and they want to come near God and really experience God," Fr. Lopez said.
At a youth vigil the evening before the beatification, pilgrims gathered outside of the Assisi's Basilica of St. Mary of the Angels while priests heard confessions inside.
Churches throughout Assisi also offered additional hours of Eucharistic Adoration to mark Acutis' beatification.