The seven Corporal Works of Mercy are a part of Catholic tradition and are rooted in Matthew 25: 31 - 46, in which Jesus identifies himself squarely with the poor and marginalized: “Whatever you did for one of these least brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me….When I was hungry, you gave me to eat.…”
Jesus’ message to us is simple and plain: I have given myself for you. I have shown you the Father’s heart and what matters in His kingdom. Do the same.
The Corporal Works of Mercy challenge us in the midst of our modern world and busy lives to look beyond our own busy-ness and pay attention to those around us who are in need.
CORPORAL WORKS OF MERCY
FEED THE HUNGRY
The world has enough food to feed every child and yet hundreds of millions of people go each day without a basic morsel. How can I get involved in feeding programs? Do I know of people in my neighbourhood who have no food to eat?
GIVE DRINK TO THE THIRSTY
Water is a luxury to thousands of people with more than 5000 children dying each because of lack of water or due to diseases carried by impure water. What are the issues of water in my community? How can I help organisations that are working towards this cause?
CLOTHE THE NAKED
Our wardrobes and closets are filled with excess things we don’t even need. How much do I own that I really don’t need? Am I willing to be mindful towards letting go of extra purchases in order to clothe a naked body?
SHELTER THE HOMELESS
Thousands live today without a roof over their heads. Perhaps we have become immune to the homeless we see each day in our streets and towns. Do I know the homeless in my community? Am I willing to get involved with organisations that aid homeless people?
VISIT THOSE IN PRISON
Prison is a very lonely place. Guilt and despair overtake one who has plunged on the wrong side of life. We would know how it feels if they were one of our own? Are we willing to empathetic to those who are desperate for a love and compassion behind bars? What can I offer support to programs held in prisons
COMFORT THE SICK
Am I willing to offer a heart of compassion to those who are housebound with illness? Besides offering help with food and money, am I willing to sit and listen to that bed-ridden with illness?
BURY THE DEAD
Every one of us has experienced the death of someone we love, whether it is a distant, elderly friend or a spouse or child. A touch on the arm or shoulder, a hug and careful listening help the person know how much we are present to them.