Pope reflects on suffering of children, asks doctors to care for souls as well as bodies
April 14, 2014
In an April 12 address to participants in an Italian Society of Oncological Surgery conference, Pope Francis told physicians that they should “not lose sight of the human person, created in the image of God, and who is unity of body and spirit.”
“Disease, the experience of pain and suffering, does not regard solely the corporal dimension, but man in his totality,” the Pope continued. “From this stems the need for integral care, that considers the person in his entirety … because the physician must care for all: the human body, with its psychological, social and spiritual dimension; as well as the spiritual accompaniment and support for the family members of the sick person.”
Pope Francis concluded his remarks by reflecting on the suffering of innocent children:
Only Christ gives meaning to the scandal of innocent suffering. So many times Dostoyevsky’s anguished query comes to mind: why do children suffer? Only Christ can give meaning to this “scandal.” You too can look to Him, crucified and resurrected, in your daily work. And at the feet of Jesus’ Cross we also meet Our Lady of Sorrows. She is the Mother of all humanity, and she is always close to her sick and suffering children. If our faith wavers, hers does not.
- Pope Francis: Care for Your Patients without Forgetting They Are People (VIS)
- Pope to physicians: never lose sight of the spiritual dimension of man (Vatican Radio)
- Udienza ai Partecipanti al Congresso di Chirurgia Oncologica "Digestive Surgery. New trends and spending review" (Holy See Press Office)
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