Saturday, February 11, 2017

Youcat commented through CCC – Question n. 242 - Part II.

YOUCAT Question n. 242 - Part II. Why should the Church take special care of the sick?

(Youcat answer – repeated) Jesus shows us: Heaven suffers with us when we suffer. God even wants to be rediscovered in “the least of these my brethren” (Mt 25:40). That is why Jesus designated care of the sick as a central task for his disciples. He commands them, “Heal the sick” (Mt 10:8), and he promises them divine authority: “In my name they will cast out demons; they will lay their hands on the sick, and they will recover” (Mk 16:17-18).

A deepening through CCC

(CCC 1509) "Heal the sick!" (Mt 10:8). The Church has received this charge from the Lord and strives to carry it out by taking care of the sick as well as by accompanying them with her prayer of intercession. She believes in the life-giving presence of Christ, the physician of souls and bodies. This presence is particularly active through the sacraments, and in an altogether special way through the Eucharist, the bread that gives eternal life and that St. Paul suggests is connected with bodily health (Cf. Jn 6:54, 58; 1 Cor 11:30).

Reflecting and meditating 

(Youcat comment) One of the distinctive characteristics of Christianity has always been that the elderly, the sick, and the needy are central to it. Mother Teresa, who cared for those who were dying in the gutters of Calcutta, is only one in a long series of Christian women and men who have discovered Christ precisely in those who were marginalized and avoided by others. When Christians are really Christian, a healing influence goes out from them. Some even have the gift of healing others physically in the power of the Holy Spirit (the charism of healing, charism).

(CCC Comment)

(CCC 1510) However, the apostolic Church has its own rite for the sick, attested to by St. James: "Is any among you sick? Let him call for the elders [presbyters] of the Church and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord; and the prayer of faith will save the sick man, and the Lord will raise him up; and if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven" (Jas 5:14-15). Tradition has recognized in this rite one of the seven sacraments (Cf. Council of Constantinople II (553) DS 216; Council of Florence (1439) 1324-1325; Council of Trent (1551) 1695-1696; 1716-1717).

(The next question is: For whom is the sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick intended?)

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