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Works of Mercy

Works of Mercy

"The works of mercy are charitable actions by which we come to the aid of our neighbor in his spiritual and bodily necessities." - Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2447

Corporal Works of MercySpiritual Works of Mercy
Feed the hungryAdmonish the sinner
Give drink to the thirstyInstruct the ignorant
Clothe the nakedConsel the doubtful
Shelter the homelessComfort the sorrowful
Visit the sickBear wrongs patiently
Visit the imprisonedForgive all injuries
Bury the deadPray for the living and the dead

The works of mercy give shape to the Church's desire to bring mercy to the world as a response to the mercy she has so freely and generously received from Christ. Since the whole human person is the subject of God's loving mercy, both body and soul, the works of mercy are oriented towards both the physical and spiritual necessities of the human person.

In living the works of mercy, the Church shares in God's action in the world, namely, the restoration, protection and affirmation of the full dignity of the person made in the image of God. For this reason the works of mercy are patterned after the life of Jesus Christ as he ministered to each human being, body and soul, in order to restore him to fullness of life.

Resources for Living the Works of Mercy