Let’s face it: being sick is no fun. Serious illness is one of the most depressing things we can face in life. Not only does it make us feel powerless, it also makes us feel alone and isolated. For this reason, the Church encourages us to practice the corporal work of mercy of visiting the sick. Even if we can’t care in-person for those who are sick—especially during the pandemic—we can let others know that they are not alone during their time of illness. In teaching children to practice this work of mercy, the first step is to build empathy. In this episode of Pop-Up Catechesis, we explore how parents can use the World Day of the Sick on February 11 (the liturgical memorial of Our Lady of Lourdes) as an opportunity to build empathy in their children, especially toward those who are experiencing illness.
For more information about how Catholics can observe the World Day of the Sick, check out the following links:
- World Day of the Sick
- 2021 World Day of the Sick Prayer Service
- Pope Francis’s Message for the 29th World Day of the Sick
- 3-Minute Retreat: Healing the Sick
- The Sacrament of Anointing of the Sick
- Meredith’s Gift (the story of a young girl who finds hope after learning she has an illness that may prevent her from using her gift ever again)
- Healing as God’s M.O.