“There's a lot of ugly things in this world, son. I wish I could keep 'em all away from you. That's never possible.”
We all encounter suffering at some point in our life. Some endure this much more than others. When we are faced with the suffering of another, love can be tested and, loving gets difficult. Whether it is the addiction a family member is suffering, the disease that has crippled a parent, or the accident that has suddenly changed the life of a young person in the prime of their life, suffering is always difficult to bear.
Jesus calls us to be close to those who are suffering. The compassion Jesus taught during his mission is the example for all people who seek to follow him. He asks us - what did you do for the little ones, the hungry, thirsty, sick, imprisoned? (cf. Luke 10:30-37).
There is no quick fix to suffering. We believe that God is with us as we suffer, just as he was with his Son as he was humiliated and crucified, just as he was with Mary as she looked on and wept.
“Faith recalls the profounder possibilities for good occasioned by illness and pain: for the sufferer, there is a chance for re-evaluation, conversion, growth in virtue, setting things right with God and others, for onlookers there are opportunities for compassion and selfless behaviour, perseverance in generosity even when exhausted”
(Catholic Bioethics for a New Millennium. Bishop A. Fisher, OP, Cambridge University Press. 2012)
To read more about the problem of suffering in the world. CLICK HERE