The Holy Year of Mercy
Like the Fourteenth Dalai Lama of Tibet, Pope Francis in The Church of Rome, is sharing his opinion on compassion and mercy in life. Although Pope Francis distinguishes compassion (a human action) from mercy (a divine action), the two positive conditions are quite similar in values, attitudes, and behaviors. Pope Francis has initiated “The Holy Year of Mercy” in the Catholic faith. I will provide a very brief summary about what actions are being recommended. We all should remember what Saint John of the Cross said about how we will be judged. “In the evening of life, we will be judged on love alone.” Within your own private introspection, where do you now stand on living your life with compassion, mercy, and love? Here are some suggestions from the Papacy.
From The Seven Corporal Works of Mercy
- We need to feed the hungry.
- We need to provide drink to the thirsty.
- We need to dress the naked.
- We need to house the pilgrim.
- We need to visit the sick.
- We need to visit the imprisoned (physical and emotional).
- We need to bury the dead.
From The Seven Spiritual Works of Mercy
- We need to advise those in doubt.
- We need to teach the ignorant.
- We need to admonish the sinner.
- We need to console the afflicted.
- We need to forgive offenses.
- We need to be patient with all people.
- We need to pray (in your own way) for both the living and the dead.
So, during this special year of practicing mercy for all people, where do you stand at this time? You may want to reflect and then act in a positive manner.
For more information refer to Pope Francis (2016). The Name of God is Mercy. New York: Random House, pp. 97-99.
By Anthony R. Quintiliani, PhD., LADC
From the Eleanor R. Liebman Center for Secular Meditation in Monkton, Vermont
Author of Mindful Happiness
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