The Year of Mercy announced by Pope Francis begins officially on 8th December 2015 and continues until 20th November 2016. His intention is that the “balm of mercy” should reach everyone and that this would be a sign that the Kingdom of God is present in our midst.
As well as an opportunity for our own spiritual growth, it is also a time to reflect upon the corporal and spiritual works of mercy, i.e. our love in action.
There is a Diocesan website: www.bemerciful.co.uk which will be a hub for events and activities during the year. Bishop Patrick would like each parish and each school to reflect upon what they are already doing through the lens of mercy and then undertake one further act of mercy.
The Seven Spiritual Works of Mercy
1. Counselling the doubtful
2. Instructing the ignorant
3. Caring about sinners
4. Comforting the afflicted
5. Forgiving offences
6. Bearing wrongs patiently
7. Praying for the living and the dead
The Seven Corporal Works of Mercy
1. Feeding the Hungry
2. Giving drink to the thirsty
3. Clothing the naked
4. Welcoming the stranger
5. Visiting the sick
6. Visiting the imprisoned