What Mercy is/isn’t

Mercy in Difficult Times

It’s becoming harder to live out mercy, in the wake of recent attacks on the Church. Recently, an elderly priest was killed during Mass by radicals. How do we respond in mercy? Bishop Barron explains: “The word mercy is an English-ing of the word Misericordia, which means “the suffering of the heart”. Mercy, therefore is a kind of compassion, that word from compassio in Latin, which means “I suffer with”. It’s a deep, loving identification with people in their suffering, I might say. That’s mercy.” In response to these events, we are called to a heroic suffering. We will never accept the persecution of the Church, but we are also called to suffer with the perpetrators, to recognize that Jesus still loves them and that they are children of God. To be merciful, then, is to suffer for and with them precisely because we recognize their inherent value as people, who still have the opportunity for repentance and conversion.