June 23, 2023

Serra Club Vocations Essay

Blessed Carlo leads student to see God in others through the Eucharist

(Editor’s note: The Indianapolis Serra Club’s annual John D. Kelley Vocations Essay Contest ordinarily awards prizes each spring to winning essayists in grades 7-12 in the archdiocese. This week, we continue with the winning entry in the eighth grade.)

By Benjamin Parr (Special to The Criterion)

Benjamin ParrGod calls us all to our own unique vocation that we are meant to live out with love. Following this vocation can be a difficult task. Sometimes you need a little assistance.

Blessed Carlo Acutis used his already entrenched love of the Eucharist in order to answer God’s call.

Carlo’s love of the Eucharist was evident early on. Since the age of 3, he would go to Mass every day. He really couldn’t stand to be away from Christ in the sacrament.

This amount of discipline from someone so young is inspiring in itself. If a toddler can have such a diligent work ethic, surely a teenager like me can, too. However, it didn’t feel like work to Carlo. He truly enjoyed being in the presence of Christ every day, and he saw it as a gift.

When Carlo would make his daily trip to the church, he wasn’t just focused on himself and Jesus. He was keeping others in mind, too.

He had been experiencing this great love of the Eucharist and wanted others to feel that same sensation. So, he would invite others to come and worship alongside him.

Sometimes when I focus too much on myself, I can forget that my neighbors are just as important to my relationship with God. When I ignore God in others, I ignore God in myself. However, if I follow Carlo’s example, then I can remember to include others in my faithful journey.

Carlo also knew how important God’s gifts to us are. He recognized that he had a knack for computer coding and technology and let it shine through instead of wasting it.

Through this gift, he shared his love of the Eucharist with an even wider audience on the Internet. Today, Carlo’s website, which contains lists of miracles of the Eucharist around the world, is still accessible to millions of people across the world.

Carlo’s use of his gifts gives me an example of how to use my own God-given talents. For example, I can use my experience as a musician to spread the knowledge of God to anyone willing to listen.

Unfortunately, Carlo would succumb to leukemia at the age of 15. Even though he passed at such a young age, Carlo was ready to part from this world to the next. He loved the Eucharist so much that he was already prepared to return to Jesus.

If I lead a holy life for God, then I should be able to feel that same way when I pass. The scary reality is that I never know when that might happen, but Carlo has inspired me to start preparing myself as soon as possible.

Blessed Carlo Acutis was called to use his gifts to spread God’s word, which he was able to do through his love of the Eucharist. If I follow his example of generosity and dedication, then I, too, can use my desire for the Eucharist to live as God calls me to.

(Benjamin and his parents, Drew and Lina Parr, are members of Christ the King Parish in Indianapolis. He recently completed the eighth grade at Christ the King School in Indianapolis and is the eighth-grade division winner in the Indianapolis Serra Club’s 2023 John D. Kelley Vocations Essay Contest.)

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