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Local pastoral visitors gather to pray, reflect on ministry to the sick


Participants in "A Time of Prayer for Pastoral Visitors and Ministers of Communion to the Sick" are pictured at St. Joseph Parish in Wakefield, Jan. 31. Pilot photo/Mark Labbe

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WAKEFIELD -- Pastoral Visitors and ministers of Communion who offer support to the sick or infirm came together to listen to a lecture by Sister Anne D'Arcy, CSJ and share their work-related experiences during a conference at St. Joseph Parish in Wakefield, Jan. 31.

The two hour conference, entitled ''A Time of Prayer for Pastoral Visitors and Ministers of Communion to the Sick,'' was co-sponsored by the Office of Spiritual Life and the Office of Chaplaincy at the Archdiocese of Boston. It is the first of five conferences that will be held over the next few months.

The event at the parish began with a prayer, a song, and a reading from the Gospel.

The reading was from the Gospel of Mark, and told the story of the paralyzed man who was lowered down on a mat into a crowded house by his friends to see Jesus.

Jesus, upon seeing the man's faith, forgave his sins. Some people in the crowd questioned Jesus, saying only God has the power forgive sins. In response, Jesus restored the paralyzed man's movement, thus proving that he had the authority to forgive man's sins.

Sister Anne, the associate director of the Office of Spiritual Life, focused on the reading in her talk, as well as the Year of Mercy.

She said the story illustrates the "importance of the mercy of forgiveness," and likened the man's friends to the caregivers at the gathering.

"By your ministry, you bring people to Jesus," Sister Anne said.

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