Blessed Chiara Badano
Chiara Badano, a young member of the Focolare movement, who died of bone cancer in 1990, at the age of 18, was beatified on Saturday, by Archbishop Angelo Amato, at the Shrine of Divine Love in Rome.
At the Mass, Archbishop Amato said Chiara was a missionary of Jesus "who invites us to rediscover the freshness and enthusiasm of the faith."
Even as she suffered through her illness, she shared her faith and God's love with the dozens of people who would visit her each day, he said.
"Her last gift was her corneas, the only organs that were still transplantable" because they were not damaged by the cancer that had spread throughout her body, the archbishop said. "They were given to two young people who can see today thanks to her."
Vatican Radio reported that Charia's parents, Teresa and Ruggero, attended the Beatification Mass.
Her mother said that when Chiara became ill, "She taught us how to do God's will, like she did, because you don't just say 'yes' when everything is going well."
After the Mass, around 8,000 young Focolare members gathered in the Vatican audience hall for a celebration of Blessed Badano's life with readings and singing.
Speaking to pilgrims in St Peter's Square after the Angelus, Pope Benedict said that Chiara witnessed to the world the fact that God's love is stronger than suffering and death.
"Only Love with a capital L gives true happiness," and that's what Blessed Badano showed her family, her friends and her fellow members of the Focolare Movement,
Pope Benedict said young people can find in Blessed Badano "an example of Christian consistency," because she was certain of God's love and trusted in that love even as she was dying.
"We give praise to God because his love is stronger than evil and death; and we give thanks to the Virgin Mary who leads young people, even in the midst of difficulty and suffering, to fall in love with Jesus and discover the beauty of life," the Holy Father said.
For more information about Blessed Chiara Badano, see: www.chiaralucebadano.it/
Source: VIS/www.chiaralucebadano/Vatican Radio