As we have experienced over the years, our Holy Fathers have given recognition to create awareness and inspire the Universal Church to pray for various intentions. There have been “World Day” celebrations for artists, journalists, those in Consecrated Life, Vocations, Priests, the Family, for the sick and for peace, just to name a few. February 11, the feast of our Lady of Lourdes, is the set aside for the World Day of the Sick. In reflecting about our Lady’s role to thousands of pilgrims who may make a pilgrimage to Lourdes each year seeking healing through her intercession, we know that our Lady always leads us to her Son and that above all, the faith of the pilgrims is strengthened.
The theme Pope Benedict XVI chose for this year’s World Day of the Sick is the Good Samaritan: “Go and do likewise.” Here at Jeanne Jugan Residence we took this Gospel passage a step further by answering the question, “Who is my neighbor?” and witnessed the answer in our dedicated staff. We decided to have a staff recommitment service to recognize and show appreciation to all those who lend a helping hand to our Residents throughout each day by lovingly accomplishing their daily tasks. We are the recipients of a welcoming smile, a helping hand, compassion, a listening ear, joy, and someone’s humble service countless times throughout the day. The Values (a reverence for the sacredness of human life, family spirit, humble service, compassion, stewardship) and Vision of our Mission Statement were woven throughout the service as a reminder of sharing the compassionate love of Christ with all. Our Chaplain, Fr. William Brailsford, led us in a blessing for all health care workers and afterwards, everyone enthusiastically renewed our commitment to service.
Those who travel to the shrine at Lourdes may not be cured from their physical ailments. But the faith of these pilgrims is renewed and they are made aware that they do not face each day alone but have a loving support system to guide them through their journey. So it is with life in our Home with competent and dedicated staff, who share in the family spirit entrusted to us by St. Jeanne Jugan. Each of our Homes is one of joy, unity, and peace when the compassion of Christ is shared among its members. So, who is our neighbor, you may ask? It is the one who treated the other with compassion. Why not be a Good Samaritan and pass it forward?
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