Pope Francis' catechesis on this work of mercy: visiting the sick and imprisoned
During the General Audience, the pope recalled how Jesus came to the world to comfort and heal the sick of their illnesses. He said Jesus brought "true freedom" to the world; a freedom that "is born from the personal encounter with Him."
EXCERPTS OF CATECHESIS IN ENGLISH
Dear Brothers and Sisters:
In our catechesis for this Holy Year of Mercy, we now consider two further corporal works of mercy: healing the sick and visiting the imprisoned. Jesus himself is our model in both.
He shows us the importance of drawing near to those who so often feel alone and abandoned. How much good is done when we visit the sick and those in prison, and how much we ourselves are enriched by these acts of charity! Visiting the imprisoned is a fruitful way of bringing the Lordâ??s healing presence to those who are paying for their mistakes.
Deprived of their freedom, they especially need to hear the message of Godâ??s merciful love and forgiveness, and in this way to recognize their worth and dignity.
Jesus himself, though innocent, suffered in prison for our sake, and the apostles Peter and Paul used the time of their imprisonment to pray and proclaim the Gospel. By visiting the sick and the imprisoned, may we bring Godâ??s mercy and its redemptive power to our brothers and sisters in need.
I greet the English-speaking pilgrims and visitors taking part in todayâ??s Audience, particularly those from England, Denmark, Finland, Sweden, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Vietnam, Canada and the United States of America. With prayerful good wishes that the present Jubilee of
Mercy will be a moment of grace and spiritual renewal for you and your families, I invoke upon all of you joy and peace in our Lord Jesus Christ.