Skip to main content
BulletinsLentLetters from Padre

Mar 24th, 2019 Bulletin & News


Give alms. Show mercy.

In this great season of Lent, we prepare our hearts to celebrate the mysteries of our redemption during Holy Week. The three pillars of this Lenten season are: Prayer, Fasting, and Almsgiving. Last week, we reflected on prayer by examining moments of desolation and consolation. This week, I would like to focus on the third pillar, Almsgiving. We often associate this term with monetary donations but really, it is about so much more. To give alms, literally means to show Mercy. In the Gospel of Matthew, Jesus tells us that whatever we do for the “least” among us, we have done for him. Thus, when we show mercy to others, we are serving Jesus Christ himself. So a question to ask ourselves is who are the least of our society? Of our neighborhood? Of our Church? As whom is Christ going to show himself to me today? The unwed mother? The unborn child? The addicted? The same-sex attracted? The undocumented immigrant? The person begging on the corner? An estranged family member? An aggravating neighbor? An unwanted request?

The Church invites us to participate in both Corporal (physical) and Spiritual Works of Mercy These are identified as:

Corporal Works of Mercy

  • Feed the Hungry
  • Give Drink to the Thirsty
  • Clothe the Naked
  • Shelter the Homeless
  • Visit the Sick
  • Visit the Imprisoned
  • Bury the Dead

Spiritual Works of Mercy

  • Instruct the Ignorant
  • Counsel the Doubtful
  • To Admonish Sinners
  • To Bear Patiently Those Who Wrong Us
  • To Forgive Offenses
  • To Comfort The Afflicted
  • To Pray for the Living and the Dead

Let’s resolve now to give alms to show mercy in whatever way the Lord calls us. It could be in showing compassion to the homeless, participating in 40 Days for Life to show mercy to unborn children and scared mothers, telling someone about Jesus Christ, or baking bread for your neighbor. Jesus is calling, are we ready to answer?

Fr. Casey