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Persistence and pain. Women and healing in the Gospel offer insights to Catholic healthcare providers


, : Persistence and pain. Women and healing in the Gospel offer insights to Catholic healthcare providers. Health Progress 76(2): 50-53

Scripture can enlighten us on the difficult times Catholic healthcare providers face today. Two stories from Mark's Gospel offer helpful insights to persons engaged in the institutional context of healing. These stories are of the woman with the "flow of blood" (Mk 5:25-34) and of the Syro-Phoenician woman (Mk 7:24-30). The women were determined to receive the healing they needed. They went for it, and got it, despite considerable obstacles. I suggest five insights we might draw from these two narratives of healing. These women were persistent. Sometimes it takes a great deal of persistence to find God in all the ordinariness, the numbing everydayness we encounter in our daily work. Like these women, the healing you seek for those you care for takes place in a hostile world. Catholic healthcare institutions themselves face some hostility from other institutions. The stories remind us that we must feel our own pain and that of others. The capacity to hurt and to feel the hurt of others helps us persevere in the face of this hostile world. Both women did what others could--and should--have done for them. Each of these women found in herself a place of strength she could draw on. This place of strength is the presence of God. I hope that Catholic healthcare providers are aware of God's presence in them and in those to whom they minister. I hope they work against the "quick-fix" mentality of much of modern healthcare and modern consumerism. Catholic healthcare recognizes the sacramentality of life on earth, struggling always to find the God who is revealed where we least expect her.

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