Friday, February 11, 2011

Praying for the Sick...

In 1858 the Blessed Virgin Mary appeared to St. Bernadette Soubirous near Lourdes in France.  Every February the 11th we recall how through this humble girl, Mary called sinners to conversion and inspired within the Church a great zeal for prayer and charity, especially service to the poor and the sick.  Lourdes continues to be one of the most visited Marian shrines in the world, a place of prayer, peace and healing. 
Pope John Paul II officially designated February 11 as the World Day of Prayer for the Sick in 1992. 

In our parish, the remainder of the month of February will be dedicated to special prayers on behalf of the sick, especially those who are members of our own parish.  A vigil candle will remain lit in front of the pulpit until the end of the month to represent our prayers and support for them.  A relic of St. Bernadette Soubirous will also remain in front of the vigil lamp both for veneration and as a reminder of the spiritual solidarity we share with the saints.

Scripture Reading for the Sick

"Are any sick among you?  They should call for the elders of the church and have them pray over them, anointing them with oil in the name of the Lord.  The prayer of faith will save the sick, and the Lord will raise them up; and anyone who has committed sins will be forgiven" (James 5:14-15).