Notable quotations from Pope Francis and official teachings of the Roman Catholic Church
... The ... World Day of the Sick (Feb. 11) ... is an opportunity to reflect ... on the needs of the sick and ... of all those who suffer. It is also an occasion for those who generously assist the sick, beginning with family members, health workers and volunteers, to give thanks for their God-given vocation of accompanying our infirm brothers and sisters.
This celebration likewise gives the Church renewed spiritual energy for carrying out ever more fully that fundamental part of her mission which includes serving the poor, the infirm, the suffering, the outcast and the marginalized...
I express my closeness to all of you, our suffering brothers and sisters, and to your families, as well as my appreciation for all those in different roles of service and in healthcare institutions ...
I encourage all of you ... to see in Mary, Health of the Infirm, the sure sign of God's love for every human being and a model of surrender to His will. May you always find in faith, nourished by the Word and by the Sacraments, the strength needed to love God, even in the experience of illness.
Let us ask Mary Immaculate for the grace always to relate to the sick as persons who certainly need assistance, at times even for the simplest of things, but who have a gift of their own to share with others.
The gaze of Mary, Comfort of the Afflicted, brightens the face of the Church in her daily commitment to the suffering and those in need. The precious fruits of this solicitude for the world of suffering and sickness are a reason for gratitude to the Lord Jesus, who out of obedience to the will of the Father became one of us, even enduring death on the cross for the redemption of mankind.
... I ask you to join me in praying to Mary. May her maternal intercession sustain and accompany our faith, and obtain for us from Christ her Son hope along our journey of healing and of health, a sense of fraternity and responsibility, a commitment to integral human development and the joy of feeling gratitude whenever God amazes us by His fidelity and His mercy.
Mary, our Mother, in Christ you welcome each of us as a son or daughter. Sustain the trusting expectation of our hearts, succor us in all our infirmities and sufferings, and guide us to Christ, your Son and our brother. Help us to entrust ourselves to the Father who accomplishes great things.
(Message for 2017 World Day of the Sick, dated 12/18/2016)
Published by: Presentation Ministries, 3230 McHenry Ave., Cincinnati, OH 45211, (513) 662-5378, www.presentationministries.com