They come with generous hearts

    March 9, 2024

    Come, let us return to the LORD, it is he who has rent, but he will heal us; he has struck us, but he will bind our wounds.
    Hosea 6:1

    Like many children, I enjoyed playing “doctor” as a child. Once, I made a paper doll. I cut a wound in her abdomen and proceeded to “stitch” her back together with a series of staples. Finally, I removed the “stiches” with a staple remover and patched the wound with Scotch tape to indicate her complete recovery.

    There is something in the human person that delights to heal, to order and to restore. We have entire TV networks dedicated to home renovation shows. To see something broken, damaged or dirty made whole and beautiful once again inspires us and fills us with hope, because if we are honest — like David in today’s Psalm — we recognize that we too need restoration: “thoroughly wash me from my guilt and of my sin cleanse me.”

    Of course, God does not “wound” the healthy, as I did my poor doll. We are, none of us, healthy. We are, each of us, already wounded — by our own sins and by the sins of others. The “wounds” God inflicts upon us serve for our healing and flourishing, like the scalpel of a surgeon removing a cancerous growth.

    Catholic Charities is in the “business” of restoration: repairing homes, health and hearts through our various programs. Our staff delight in this work. So do our volunteers. I am daily humbled by the people who come to serve at Catholic Charities. Many who come for our help, also come to our help. They come with generous hearts, delighted to pack and distribute food bags, grateful to contribute to the relief of another brother or sister in need, with the gifts the Lord has given them. I like to think that this holy work of our staff and volunteers is a participation in the love of God Himself, who delights to restore, to heal, and to show mercy.

    Sister Marie Josepha Kluczny, RSM is a member of the Religious Sisters of Mercy of Alma, Michigan and the Executive Director of Catholic Charities of Southwest Louisiana.

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