Year of Youth 2018

The Holy Year of Mercy - A Podcast

Last edited 15th January 2016

The Holy Year of Mercy - A Podcast

Corporal Work of Mercy - Visit the Sick - Sr Mary Lourdes lsp


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Visiting the sick is not curing the sick. It is about the human dignity of the sufferer. To be around sick people means being around vomit, pus, running sores, blood, stool, mucus, ghastly injuries, tears, misery, fear, pain, and death. All the corporal work of mercy asks us for, at its most basic, is to take courage, enter a room, sit down, and hold somebody’s fevered hand. And yet, too often we deem this as too difficult (adapted from Mark P. Shea - 'Visit the Sick').

There are, of course, good reasons for that, especially if we happen to live in a time of plague when nobody has the slightest idea what causes disease. Part of the reason the Black Death broke the back of medieval Europe is because it decimated the very classes of people (doctors and priests and other educated people) who lived the corporal work of mercy by visiting the sick - and contracting the plague. It takes real courage - and often a strong stomach - to visit the sick.

In this episode of our Holy Year of Mercy podcast, Sister Mary Lourdes lsp from the Little Sisters of the Poor, speaks to us about this corporal work of mercy - visiting the sick. Sr Mary Lourdes apostolate and whole life is dedicated to taking care of elderly, who are often also sick.

She says each one of us could choose to extend one's compassion and love to a sick person in hospital or nursing home, or even a friend who needs our support.