June 30, 2023

Serra Club Vocations Essay

Blessed Carlo shows student how to be a saint 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 ninth grade.)

By Bridgette Ehrhard (Special to The Criterion)

Bridgette EhrhardBlessed Carlo Acutis had a tremendous devotion to the Eucharist, and that helped him to overcome many sufferings in his short life.

He inspires me in my own journey to be on fire for Jesus in the Eucharist and to spread his powerful love to everyone I meet. So much enlightening information about the Eucharist on Carlo’s website inspires me. He is an amazing example of how to live my faith in the modern age.

Carlo Acutis was born in Italy in 1991 to an average family and died in 2006. Growing up as a normal child, Carlo loved playing video games and soccer. He was also quite tech savvy.

At a young age, he fell deeply in love with Jesus in the Eucharist, and every day, he dragged his parents to Mass with him because he wanted Jesus so much.

Learning about eucharistic miracles, Carlo felt called to share with the world all of the amazing things God had done by using his computer skills to make a website documenting every reported eucharistic miracle worldwide.

Blessed Carlo Acutis inspires me because he truly shows everyone how to live a holy life in the modern, secular age. Carlo was so in love with Jesus that he needed to share the good news however he could, and he used the talents God gave him to do just that.

Oftentimes, I learn about saints who never stopped fasting and praying or ones who lived as cloistered nuns or hermits. But it is challenging to relate to their lifestyles.

Carlo lived the way many teenagers live today. He played video games and soccer, but above all, he kept God as the center of his life; that is what made him different, and that is what inspires me most. I want, like Carlo Acutis, to fall in love with Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament and to translate that into the rest of my life.

Carlo suffered so much through cancer, but he never lost hope and was always cheerful because he relied on Jesus in the Eucharist for his strength. I want to be able to undergo suffering in the same way, offering it up cheerfully.

Little did Carlo know when he began creating his website that it would become recognized worldwide and that many conversions would happen because of it. He let his little light shine, and it brightened the whole world. That is my desire.

For being so young when he died, Carlo was wise for his age, saying, “The Eucharist is the highway to heaven,” and “The more Eucharist we receive, the more we will become like Jesus, so that on Earth we will have a foretaste of heaven.”

A love for Jesus in the Most Blessed Sacrament was at the center of Carlo Acutis’ life, and he inspires me to put Jesus at the center of mine, also. Nowhere else will I find true joy than in Jesus Christ.

(Bridgette and her parents, Joseph and Michelle Ehrhard, are members of All Saints Parish in Dearborn County. She recently completed the ninth grade at the Oldenburg Academy of the Immaculate Conception in Oldenburg and is the ninth-grade division winner in the Indianapolis Serra Club’s 2023 John D. Kelley Vocations Essay Contest.)

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