Year of Mercy – Jan. 8

Year of Mercy

Visit and Pray for the Sick, Home-bound, and Elderly
What Can I do?

“When he disembarked and saw the vast crowd, his heart was moved with pity for them, and he cured their sick.” – Matthew 14:14

Pope Francis quotes this scripture in his document that declared the Year of Mercy.  “Jesus felt deep compassion for the crowd and on the basis of this compassionate love he healed the sick that were presented to him.”   In this Jubilee Year of Mercy we are called to be effective signs of God’s actions in our lives and to go out, bringing the goodness and tenderness of God to others.  According to Webster’s dictionary, compassion is the concern for the troubles of another.  When we think about those who are ill, home-bound, or may have difficulty because of age or other factors that keep them from getting out, the list of troubles that they may encounter could be vast.
In order to experience the compassion for others that Jesus experienced we need to momentarily set aside our worries and think of ourselves as vessels in which God can use us to be signs of mercy.  This begins with prayer.  A prayer can be as simple as; “God of Love. Create in me a heart of compassion; help me to be love in the world. “  With this in mind meditate on the following list of actions for the sick or make your own list by first putting yourself in their shoes and writing down what you might need.  In your prayer/meditation listen for the prompting of the Holy Spirit; what speaks to you?  Once you know, say a prayer of thanksgiving and make a plan to take that action.

Support the work of the St. Vincent de Paul Society
Spend time with those who are sick or home-bound, make a call, send a card or email, especially your elderly relatives
Volunteer to drive patients to medical appointments
Volunteer at your local hospital or nursing care facility
Become a visitation minister
Cook and deliver a meal to someone sick or home-bound
Assist and support those who are caregivers for family members
Reach out to someone struggling with depression, addiction, or mental illness
Pray for someone who is ill, alone, or suffering.