Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Carmen Elena Villa

9/24/2010 (4 years ago)

Zenit News Agency (www.zenit.org)

Thousands of Focolare members will gather to celebrate the first beatification of someone from the movement

Chiara Badano was a modern teenager: She liked to sing, dance, play tennis and skate, until cancer took her life at age 18, only two decades ago. She will be beatified in a ceremony presided over by Archbishop Angelo Amato, prefect of the Congregation for Saints' Causes.Chiara was a member of the Focolare Movement, founded in Italy by Chiara Lubich in 1943. 

Chiara 'Luce' Badano.

Chiara "Luce" Badano.

Highlights

By Carmen Elena Villa

Zenit News Agency (www.zenit.org)

9/24/2010 (4 years ago)

Published in Living Faith


ROME, Italy (Zenit.org) - Chiara Badano was a modern teenager: She liked to sing, dance, play tennis and skate, until cancer took her life at age 18, only two decades ago.

Now, on Saturday at 4 p.m. in the shrine of Divine Love in Rome, Chiara will be beatified in a ceremony presided over by Archbishop Angelo Amato, prefect of the Congregation for Saints' Causes, in representation of Benedict XVI.

Chiara was a member of the Focolare Movement, founded in Italy by Chiara Lubich in 1943.

Also on Saturday, thousands of Focolare members will gather in Paul VI Hall to celebrate the first beatification of someone from the movement.

At 10:30 a.m. on Sunday, Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, the Pope's secretary of state, will offer a Mass in thanksgiving in the Basilica of St. Paul Outside the Walls.

Birth and youth

After 11 years of marriage, Ruggero and Maria Teresa Badano had the joy of the arrival of their first and only daughter, Chiara, who was born on Oct. 29, 1971, in the small village of Sassello, in the region of Liguria in northern Italy.

Her mother said: "She was not only our daughter. She belonged, in the first place, to God and as such, we had to educate her, respecting her liberty."

In 1981 Chiara discovered the Focolare movement, thanks to a friend called Chicca who invited her to be part of the GEN (New Generation) movement.

Maria Grazia Magrini, vice-postulator of Chiara Badano's cause for canonization, told ZENIT: "She put Jesus in the first place. She called him 'my spouse.'"

As a young girl, she liked to sing, dance, play tennis and skate. She loved the mountains and the sea. "She also tried to go to Mass every day," said Magrini.

One day, at age 17, while playing tennis the adolescent felt an acute pain. Her mother recalled: "She returned home and was very pale. She went upstairs."

The mother asked her: "Why did you come back, Chiara?" The youth explained, "Because during the match I felt such an sharp pain in my back that I dropped the racquet."

The pain worsened. Doctors soon discovered bone cancer. As the disease progressed, Badano faced repeated hospitalizations and increasing pain. She often repeated, "For you, Jesus. If you wish it, so do I!"

Her mother still remembers when she came home after the first session of chemotherapy. She did not want to talk. Maria Teresa recalled: "I looked at her and I saw the expression on her face, all the struggle she was combating within herself to say her 'yes' to Jesus." After 25 minutes, she said to her mother "now you can talk."

Going to meet Jesus

Chiara underwent surgery, which was unsuccessful; from that moment she lost the use of her legs.

According to her vice postulator, this young athlete, notwithstanding the very painful moment, exclaimed: "If I had to choose between walking or going to paradise, I wouldn't hesitate, I'd choose paradise."

At that time her friendship with Chiara Lubich, founder of the Focolare movement, who decided to call the youth Chiara "Luce" Badano, became very close.

She spent several months in agony, preparing for her encounter with Jesus. "The most beautiful moments were during the last summer," said her friend, Chicca. "She was motionless in her bed," she recalled.

Magrini highlighted Chiara's attitude: "She didn't cry, didn't lament, she looked at the image of Jesus."

Chicca recalled how Chiara wished to prepare her own funeral: the songs of the Mass, the dress and hairdo: Everything was for her a celebration. The friend recalled, "She told me she wanted to be buried in a white dress, as a bride that goes to meet Jesus."

Chiara made one last exhortation to her mother: "When you dress me, you must repeat three times: Now Chiara is seeing Jesus." Chiara also asked that the cornea of her eyes be donated to two youths.

She died on Oct. 7, 1990. Her last words to her mother were: "Be happy because I'm happy."

There is a wonderful web site which tells the story of Chiara here 



Comments


More Living Faith

Feast of Christ the King and Advent: What Does it Mean? Watch

Image of The Church really IS the Mystical Body of the Risen Christ. That Body is inseparably joined to the Head. Jesus Christ is alive, he has been raised, and he continues His redemptive mission now through the Church, of which we are members. As we choose to actually live our lives liturgically, not just go through the motions, we can move through life in the flow of the liturgical calendar. We can experience the deeper mystery and meaning of life, now made New in Jesus Christ, the One who is the Way, the Truth and the Life. (John 14:6,7) Jesus Christ is King! Jesus Christ is meant to become the Lord of our whole lives, and inform the very pattern of how we live them.

By Deacon Keith A Fournier

On November 23rd we celebrate the Feast of Christ the King. It is one of many opportunities the Catholic Liturgical Church year offers to each of us consider the creature which is called time, receive it as a gift and begin to really live differently. Yet, for ... continue reading


Two bishops dine and dialogue with peace activists

Image of War doesn't decide who is right, just who is left.

By Tony Magliano

During the recent U.S. Catholic bishops fall assembly in Baltimore, two bishops decided to forego the military chaplains dinner sponsored by the U.S. Army Chief of Chaplains Office, and attended instead a simple supper and discussion on peacemaking. On the evening of ... continue reading


'God always forgives, but the earth does not,' Pope warns Watch

Image of The Pope urged the world's leaders to rein in their greed and help the hungry.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A doomsday scenario in which Mother Nature would exact her revenge is possible, even likely, Pope Francis warns. The pontiff was speaking out against the exploitation of natural resources for profit. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The Pope urged the world's ... continue reading


Pope Francis' special message: Why Poverty? 'And while we speak of new rights, the hungry remain'

Image of When we give our loaves and fishes to Christ, there is no end to the Good that can come from it.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Pope Francis has asked the world to do more to help those who suffer from hunger and malnutrition. Despite gains made in infrastructure and outpourings of food, too many people with plenty have done too little to help. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - With ... continue reading


How do you raise a good, upstanding child? With daily prayers, weekly church attendance and the knowledge of God Watch

Image of Billy Graham, now 96, has reached out to millions with his joyous words of the truth of God and Jesus Christ.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Reverend Billy Graham, the world famous television evangelist and founder and chairman of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, has said that the reason the world seems to be in such dire straits is that children are not being raised right. LOS ANGELES, CA ... continue reading


Learning Lessons for Life from Zaccheus and that Sycamore Tree Watch

Image of Zaccheus climbed that tree in order to see the Lord, not to be seen by Jesus. He did not care what the crowd thought of a grown man climbing a tree! He went after the encounter with Jesus Christ with a childlike simplicity and a reckless abandon. Do we?

By Deacon Keith A Fournier

The Sycamore tree created a clear line of vision for Zaccheus. It helped him to rise above the crowd and see the Lord clearly. It placed him in the right position for the invitation that would follow. Jesus told him to come down for he was coming to his house! ... continue reading


Jesus Weeps and Calls us to Recognize His Visitation Watch

Image of The Cross, an instrument of torture, will become the sign of peace, for those who find their refuge under its shadow and embrace the One who stretches out His arms to embrace the whole world. There Jesus will deal definitively with the great enemy of peace, the sin which impedes it in each of our lives. With tenderness He looks out from the Mount of Olives and sees the Holy City of Jerusalem. How he loves that City. Then, Jesus weeps. He knows the City will soon be overtaken and destroyed by the armies of Titus. He weeps the tears of Love and cries compassion from His Sacred Heart

By Deacon Keith A Fournier

Jesus shows His disciples - and He shows us us, because we are His disciples in this hour - the pattern of living in a continual communion with the Father. He invites them - and He invites us - into this very communion of love which He has with the Father, in the ... continue reading


Children deserve both father and mother, Pope Francis says Watch

Image of Children have the right to be raised by a mother and a father, Pope Francis said, emphasizing that

By CNA/EWTN News

Children have the right to be raised by a mother and a father, Pope Francis said, emphasizing that "the family is the foundation of co-existence and a remedy against social fragmentation." Vatican City (CNA/EWTN News) - The Pope made these remarks on Nov. 17 at ... continue reading


Here are 10 Very Interesting Facts About the Catholic Church You Probably Didn't Know! Watch

Image of Pope Francis commands the world's smallest professional army.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

How much do you know about the Catholic Church? Here are 10 fun facts you might not know. See how many you know and post your result in the comments! 1.    Vatican City has the highest crime rate in the world! With a population around 500 people and a ... continue reading


Study: Latin Americans abandoning Catholic Church for evangelical, Protestant churches Watch

Image of Protestants now make up 19 percent of the Latin American population, while another eight percent now profess no religious affiliation, a figure reaching 37 percent in Uruguay.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The Catholic Church is losing members in Latin America at an increasing rate. According to the Pew research Center, many Latin Americans are leaving the church for Pentecostal, Protestant churches. There is even a growing number of Latin Americans who now ... continue reading


All Living Faith News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Ezekiel 34:11-12, 15-17
11 "For the Lord Yahweh says this: Look, I myself ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 23:1-2, 2-3, 5, 6
1 [Psalm Of David] Yahweh is my shepherd, I lack ... Read More

Gospel, Matthew 25:31-46
31 'When the Son of man comes in his glory, escorted ... Read More

Reading 2, First Corinthians 15:20-26, 28
20 In fact, however, Christ has been raised from the ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for November 23rd, 2014 Image

Bl. Miguel Pro
November 23: Born on January 13, 1891 in Guadalupe, Mexico, Miguel Agustin ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter