The Developmental Programs Division of Catholic Social Services continues our year of reflection on the topic of Agape: Unconditional Love. Catholic identity is at the root of who we are, and the call of Jesus to serve defines our daily work. Our “Rooted in Mission” initiative reminds us each day that we are rooted in faith, and that our legacy of faith compels us to serve our brothers and sisters living with disabilities, and to love them as God loves them.
We continue our reflection on Agape: Unconditional love with a reflection on a quote from Pope Emeritus, Benedict XVI on sharing in the needs and sufferings of others.
Administrator, Divine Providence Village
When we help and care for others, it goes beyond just “doing” it is also about sharing. Sharing ourselves and being present in our care of others is what makes us different from other programs.
The work we do is a calling. It is not something that can be done by just anyone. We are providing care to those we serve but it is so much more than that. Our work comes from the heart – from within. It is about being with another person and giving our whole selves. When we reach out to another person to care from the heart, we are making a leap of faith to be personally present and share ourselves with someone who needs us and the beauty of that experience is immeasurable. Like jumping into cool water on a hot day, taking the step of sharing in the needs of others is a fulfilling experience in which we find ourselves immersed in a pool of love that surrounds us and suspends us in a feeling of connectedness.
Day to day tasks such as brushing teeth or eating a meal move beyond being just a basic task and become acts of love. We are present with others sharing who we are and sharing our love and care.
The beautiful part of sharing in the needs of others and giving of ourselves is that the experience is an exchange. By being present in our care for others, what we are doing transforms from a duty or sacrifice and becomes an act of love and a true sharing of ourselves.