Friday of this week is the Feast of Our Lady of Lourdes and the World Day of the Sick.
Pope Francis has chosen "Be merciful even as your Father is merciful” (Lk. 6:36) as the theme for the 30th celebration of this day.
As Sisters of St. Joseph of Toronto, we have been attending monthly seminars on the history of our early beginnings in the mid-17th century. Our early history included village centres or hospices which were open to the sick but also to the indigent orphans and widows and really anyone who needed care. These were real centers of mercy.
This drew me to Pope Francis' description of health care centres as "houses of mercy providing healthcare to the poor and marginalized." Health care in our society has become state-of-the-art, sophisticated and technological. And yet, Pope Francis noted that there are often barriers to care due to poverty and social exclusion.
Pope Francis seemed to be urging us to still keep the same spirit in our care as we had in the 17th century when the institution in the village reached out and was available to all those in need. To search for that spirit in our surroundings and in ourselves.
Looking around the City of Toronto, I see that the spirit of loving mercy in union with the Father Son and Spirit which Pope Francis is urging is still present.
I see it in St. Michael's Hospital's Department of Family and Community Medicine offering care for those experiencing homelessness. In Street Health's nursing and community mental health services. In Inner City Health Associates connecting Toronto's people in need to health services. In the Sherbourne Health Bus program. In Toronto's nurses and physicians providing care in this time of COVID.
Not all of us are health care workers. But like them, we can carry mercy within us for ourselves and for others.
I invite you to ask yourselves: how can you yourself be a center of care?
Let us pray for all those in health care these days that God’s mercy will shine down on them and through them.
Sister Rosemary Fry
Previous Wisdom Wednesdays
- February 9, 2022: Centers of Care
- January 26, 2022: A New Soul
- January 19, 2022: Pray for Unity
- January 12, 2022: Have You Heard the Voice of God?
- January 5, 2022: Epiphany
- November 3, 2021: Fallen Leaves and Saints
- October 20, 2021: All Saints Day & All Souls Day
- October 13, 2021: Blackwater Pond
- October 6, 2021: Death is Not Forever
- September 29, 2021: In Nature
- September 22, 2021: Sleeping in the Forest
- September 15, 2021: Season of Creation
- September 8, 2021: A Sharp Turn in Our Journey
- August 11, 2021: An Invitation From Jesus
- July 21, 2021: Cannonball Moments
- July 14, 2021: Consolation and Desolation
- July 7, 2021: Who is This God You Seek to Serve?
- June 30, 2021: Praying with the Gospel Stories
- June 23, 2021: Walking the Path of Life
- June 16, 2021: A Saint for Strong Willed People
- June 9, 2021: God's Flowing Love
- June 2, 2021: I Will Not Leave You Comfortless
- May 26, 2021: Celebrating Our Beginnings
- May 19, 2021: Before the Cannon Struck
- May 12, 2021: The Fruit of Jesus
- May 5, 2021: A Branch of Jesus
- April 28, 2021: Living One Day at a Time
- April 21, 2021: The Blessing of Pope Francis