Theology 101

Practical Works of Mercy

In Matthew 25:35-36, we hear Jesus say, “For I was hungry and You gave Me food, I was thirsty and You gave Me drink, a stranger and You welcomed Me, naked and You clothed Me, ill and You cared for Me, in prison and You visited Me.” Jesus goes on to say, “Whatever You did for one of these least brothers of mine, You did for Me.” (25:40)

How can we put these words into action in our own lives?

  • Feed the hungry and give drink to the thirsty – So many people in the world go without food and clean water. In a land where food is often wasted and clean water taken for granted, consider donating to a local food bank or volunteering at a soup kitchen. Consider making a double batch of meals that can be easily frozen, and donate a home-cooked meal to a shelter.
  • Clothe the naked and give alms to the poor — Too often we live our lives in comfort and forget the needs of those around us. Consider donating new clothes to charity. Or skip going out to lunch and put that money in the collection basket.
  • Visit the sick and bury the dead – Do not shy away from those who need comfort because of illness. Consider donating blood or taking time off to visit friends or relatives who are homebound or hospitalized. Pay respect to those who have died by taking time to attend funerals, and praying for the souls of the departed and for their families.
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