|Born||19 September 1990|
|Died||24 April 2009 (aged 18)|
|Resting place||Brindisi-Ostuni Cathedral|
|Venerated in||Roman Catholic Church|
Matteo Farina (19 September 1990 - 24 April 2009) was an Italian Roman Catholic. Farina spent his entire life in Brindisi where he was an excellent student who developed passions for science and music (which came from his father) and who was noted for his devotions to Saint Pio of Pietrelcina and Saint Francis of Assisi as well as other saints who were close to him in age. He spent the last decade of his life struggling with a brain tumor that later led to his death and he was forced to seek treatment outside of Brindisi in attempt to remove the tumor.
Farina's reputation for personal holiness had been evident throughout his life of which resulted in a process for his beatification being launched. Its introduction on 11 April 2016 enabled for him to be referred to as a Servant of God and on 05 May 2020 was declared Venerable.
Matteo Farina was born on 19 September 1990 in Avellino (the birthplace of his paternal grandfather) as the second of two children born to Miky Farina (a bank clerk) and Paola Sabbatini (a housewife); his elder sister was Erika whom he was close to. Farina was baptized on 28 October in the Ave Maris Stella parish church in Brindisi where the Farina's lived.
Throughout his life he had a deep devotion to Saint Francis of Assisi and to Saint Pio of Pietrelcina and would recite the rosary each day and read the Gospel; he also made his confession once a week. Farina also attended Eucharistic Adoration often. Farina also had a devotion to Saint Gemma Galgani and Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati while the writings of Saint Thérèse of Lisieux inspired him. From his father developed a strong liking for music and learnt from his father several musical instruments while with his friends formed a music band that was called "No Name". His friends would often refer to Farina as "the moralizer" since he often spoke about God and would often encourage peace. He also had a passion for chemistry and thought about continuing his studies in the environmental engineering field. He also liked information technology during his time at school. Farina made his first confession (Reconciliation) when he was eight and on 4 June 2000 made his First Communion; he received his Confirmation on 10 May 2003 from the Archbishop of Brindisi-Ostuni Settimo Todisco. It was for his Confirmation that he selected his older sister to be his sponsor due to their close relationship. Farina also had a dream during the night between 2-3 January 2000 in which he saw Saint Pio of Pietrelcina who revealed to him the secret of Christian happiness which he urged Farina to spread to others; it was this dream that prompted him to realize that he was meant to evangelize this secret to others to lead them to God. Farina also created a fund for the missions in Mozambique and deposited his savings there while urging his parents to not do the Christmas shopping in favor of sending something to the poor of Africa. In April 2007 he began dating a girl named Serena (whom he remained with until his death) and referred to her once as "the most beautiful gift that the Lord could give".
In September 2003 he began experiencing severe headaches and vision problems and so travelled alongside his parents and his uncle Rosario for a series of health checks to be conducted in Avellino and Verona hospitals before a two week visit to Hannover for a brain biopsy that October. It was on their return to Brindisi that he believed his health problems were over but the tests soon found an extended edema in the right temporo-occipital area of his brain with malignant cells suspected also. Farina had a severe seizure ten months later and found his vision was impaired. This forced him to go to Germany for a craniotomy operation to remove a third degree brain tumor later in January 2005. He spent over a month doing chemotherapy in Milan and was able to return to Brindisi on 2 April 2005 - the date that Pope John Paul II died - and had periodic checks until 2007 in which it was believed the disease was regressing. But this was short lived for Farina experienced the first recurrence in December 2007. In October 2008 he left for Hannover for checks in which the second recurrence was discovered at which stage his mother felt it was appropriate for him to receive the Anointing of the Sick. Farina had the first of three operations to remove the tumor on 9 December 2008 but his condition worsened and in January 2009 underwent the third operation. He returned to Brindisi on 13 February 2009 with paralysis of his arm and left leg (due to the operations) and began using a wheelchair in order to move around. In late March he had a strong fever which saw him admitted to the Antonio Perrino Hospital where he received an Easter blessing from Archbishop Rocco Talucci.
His doctors were unable to do something more for Farina and so advised him to return home. He received his last Communion on 13 April 2009 and died a week later on 24 April. Farina's remains were relocated on 29 September 2017 to the Brindisi-Ostuni Cathedral at a Mass that the Archbishop Domenico Caliandro presided over.
The beatification process for Farina launched on 11 April 2016 after the Congregation for the Causes of Saints titled him as a Servant of God and issued the official "nihil obstat" (no objections) decree which would allow for the Brindisi-Ostuni archdiocese to open the investigation. The diocesan process was opened on 19 September 2016 and was later concluded some months later on 24 April 2017; the C.C.S. later validated this process on 22 September 2017 after determining the diocesan investigation adhered to their rules for these processes. The postulators (officials leading the cause) submitted the official Positio dossier to the C.C.S. officials in mid-2018 for evaluation.
Farina's beatification depends upon the papal confirmation of a miracle attributed to his intercession which in most cases is a healing that neither medicine or science could explain. The Brindisi-Ostuni archdiocese investigated such a case from 7 November 2018 until 21 March 2019 with all the relevant interrogatories and medical evidence presented to the C.C.S. following that investigation.
The current postulator for this cause is Dr. Francesca Consolini.
- "Matteo Farina ora riposa nel Duomo: centinaia di fideli alla cerimonia di traslazione". Brindisi Report. 29 September 2017. Retrieved 9 April 2019.
- "Matteo Farina - Servant of God". Matteo Farina official website. Retrieved 9 April 2019.
- "Profilo biografico di Matteo Farina". Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Brindisi-Ostuni. Retrieved 9 April 2019.
- Hannah Brockhaus (6 May 2020). "Italian teen who died in 2009 declared 'venerable' by Pope Francis". The Catholic Telegraph. Retrieved 6 May 2020.
- Dr. Francesca Consolini (12 July 2018). "Un importante passo Avanti". Matteo Farina official website. Retrieved 9 April 2019.
- Francesca Consolini (29 March 2019). "Comunicazione della postulatrice della causa di Matteo Farina". Retrieved 9 April 2019.