While browsing through my Magnificat, I came across this quote from Saint John XXIII at the opening of the Vatican Council in 1962:
“Now the Bride of Christ wishes to use the medicine of mercy rather than taking up arms of severity … The Catholic Church, as she holds high the torch of Catholic truth at this ecumenical council, wants to show herself as a loving mother to all: patient, kind, moved by compassion and goodness toward her separated children.”
The phrase, “medicine of mercy,” struck at my heart. That our Church would be a balm for those in pain and misery was almost overwhelming to me.
It isn’t the “Church” though that would be the balm. It is you and me and how we reflect Christ to others not only during this Jubilee Year of Mercy, but from now on.
So what will you do this year to be part of the “medicine of mercy?” Here are the five things I will do during the Jubilee Year of Mercy:
- One of the Spiritual Works of Mercy is “comforting the Sorrowful.” Over the years, and especially since I have a new job, I have learned to be a better listener. It is also teaching me patience which is something I sorely need. Through my work relationships and at home, I hope to bring comfort to those in need.
- Another one of the Spiritual Works of Mercy is “praying for the living and the dead.” I’m very good at praying for the living, but I never remember those who have gone before me. I wasn’t raised Catholic, so that might be why this isn’t something that has become a habit. My daughter, on the other hand, has always prayed for the dead because “Ken Kolby taught us that.”
- The Corporal Works of Mercy are more action oriented. I’ve been trying to donate to local charities that help people directly in my neighborhood. One of the things I plan to do is get my old purses together and pack them with deodorant, shampoo, conditioner, snacks, socks, chapstick, Kleenex and whatever else I can think of. I’m hoping to find an organization or women’s shelter in my neighborhood that would like to take the purses.
- Money. I’m going to donate money. On the one hand, it seems lazy just to go to PayPal and fill out the “send money to” form and be done with it, but a lot of organizations need the cold, hard cash.
- My favorite:
What will you be doing during the Jubilee Year of Mercy?
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