The Faithful Scribbler

A Catholic Mother In A Secular World

Corporal and Spiritual Works of Mercy

on April 21, 2010

So you know how we often talk about our “Christian walk”, and “living as God commands”?  We here at the Casa de Scribbler have decided that the best way to do that is to practice performing Works of Mercy whenever possible– hopefully every day!  We’re very concerned about setting up the right examples for the Little Scribbler– especially at her age (3) where kids tend to go through that phase of “Everything I Touch Is MINE!”

I know a lot of kids who have been indulged in their magpie like tendencies, and consequently have grown into older kids who are relatively obnoxious in their obsession with owning things.  Everytime you take them out, they ask for something, or they want you to buy them something, or worse, they EXPECT that you will buy them something!  We deeply, DEEPLY desire that Little Scribbler be able to derive joy from giving.  She’s at an age where things in her world are really starting to fall together and impressions/habits are being formed.  It’s the golden time for us to teach her about how Jesus lived, even tho she doesn not as of yet know exactly who He is.

So below is a text on Works of Mercy (with Scriptural support for those who enjoy that sort of thing!) that I have again, blatantly stolen from somewhere.  This time I swiped it from the Diocese of Juneau website :)

(Say it with me, parents of Dora fans– Swiper, NO SWIPING!)

I dont mean to keep stealing things, but I figure, why reinvent the wheel?! If somebody else said it better, might as well go with that and give credit where it’s due!

——————————————————————-

The works of mercy are charitable actions motivated by Christian love by which we help our neighbor obtain what he or she needs spiritually and materially.  Instructing, advising, consoling and comforting are spiritual works of mercy, as are forgiving and bearing wrongs patiently. 

The corporal works of mercy consist especially in feeding the hungry, sheltering the homeless, clothing the naked, visiting the sick and imprisoned, and burying the dead.  The works of mercy are not optional but are absolutely essential to living the Christian life of holiness and goodness. (CCC2447)

Corporal Works of Mercy
  • Feed the hungry
  • Give drink to the thirsty
  • Shelter the homeless
  • Clothe the naked
  • Care for the sick
  • Visit the imprisoned
  • Bury the dead
Spiritual Works of Mercy
  • To admonish the sinner (correct those who need correction)
  • To instruct the ignorant (teach the ignorant)
  • To counsel the doubtful (give advice to those who need it)
  • To comfort the sorrowful (give comfort to those who suffer)
  • To bear wrongs patiently (be patient with others)
  • To forgive all injuries (to forgive others who hurt you.)
  • To pray for the living and the dead (to pray for everyone who needs our prayers)

Corporal Works of Mercy  

The works of mercy are charitable actions motivated by Christian love by which we help our neighbor obtain what he or she needs spiritually and materially.  Instructing, advising, consoling and comforting are spiritual works of mercy, as are forgiving and bearing wrongs patiently. 

The corporal works of mercy consist especially in feeding the hungry, sheltering the homeless, clothing the naked, visiting the sick and imprisoned, and burying the dead.  The works of mercy are not optional but are absolutely essential to living the Christian life of holiness and goodness. (Catechism of the Catholic Church 2447; Catechism for Filipino Catholics 972-977

Corporal Works of Mercy
  • Feed the hungry
  • Give drink to the thirsty
  • Shelter the homeless
  • Clothe the naked
  • Care for the sick
  • Visit the imprisoned
  • Bury the dead

The Scriptural basis for the corporal works of mercy is the parable in the Gospel of Matthew, in which Jesus teaches his disciples about God’s criteria for the Last Judgement (cf.Mt25:35-42).  In this parable, the just and the unjust discover that in their merciful actions on behalf of the neighbor, they have been merciful to the Lord Jesus, who identifies completely with the hungry, homeless, sick, imprisoned and even the dead.  God, who is rich in mercy, invites His sons and daughters to imitate his abundant mercy and loving kindness towards His children.  God is rich in mercy, because of his great love for us, he brought us to life with Christ when we were dead in sin. – By this favor you were saved. (Ephesians2:4-5)

Spiritual Works of Mercy

The works of mercy are charitable actions motivated by Christian love by which we help our neighbor obtain what he or she needs spiritually and materially. The corporal works of mercy consist especially in feeding the hungry, sheltering the homeless, clothing the naked, visiting the sick and imprisoned, and burying the dead.  

Instructing, advising, consoling and comforting are spiritual works of mercy, as are forgiving and bearing wrongs patiently.  The works of mercy are not optional but are absolutely essential to living the Christian life of holiness and goodness. (Catechism of the Catholic Church 2447; Catechism for Filipino Catholics 972-977)

Spiritual Works of Mercy
  • To admonish the sinner (correct those who need correction)
  • To instruct the ignorant (teach the ignorant)
  • To counsel the doubtful (give advice to those who need it)
  • To comfort the sorrowful (give comfort to those who suffer)
  • To bear wrongs patiently (be patient with others)
  • To forgive all injuries (to forgive others who hurt you.)
  • To pray for the living and the dead (to pray for everyone who needs our prayers)

The spiritual works of mercy are drawn from a variety of Old and New Testament sources.

My brothers, if someone is detected in sin, you who live by the Spirit should gently set him right. (Galatians 6:1)

Let the word of Christ, rich as it is, dwell in you.  In wisdom made perfect, instruct and admonish one another. (Colossians 3:16)

Correct those who are confused.  (Jude 23)

As a mother comforts her son, so I will comfort you.  (Isaiah 66:13)

Help carry one another’s burdens; in that way you will fulfill the law of Christ. (Galatians 6:2)

Because you are God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, clothe yourselves with heartfelt mercy, with kindness, humility, meekness and patience.  Bear with one another; forgive whatever grievances you have against one another.  Forgive as the Lord has forgiven you. (Colossians 3:12)

Pray constantly and attentively for all. (Ephesians 6:18)

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3 responses to “Corporal and Spiritual Works of Mercy

  1. musette says:

    Very beautiful and oh so true. I learned this in the Baltimore 2 Catechism…….and it is still true. It should be taught to every child

    • someone says:

      that so true that you for this information im learning this now and im in 7th grade thank you because i needed it for a religion quiz for tomorrow!!!;)

  2. [...] Catholic Kids 411…  Daily Catholic…  Divine Mercy…  Doing good…  Faithful Scribbler…  Fisheaters…  Lesson plans (kids)…  Miracle of the Rosary Mission…  [...]

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