Pope Francis calls the World Day of the Sick an “opportunity to reflect in particular on the needs of the sick and, more generally, of all those who suffer. It is also an occasion for those who generously assist the sick, beginning with family members, health workers and volunteers.” 

In 1992, St. John Paul II declared Feb. 11 as World Day of the Sick, to coincide with the feast of Our Lady of Lourdes. On Saturday, Feb. 11, Auxiliary Bishop Edward Clark will preside at a Mass and anointing of the sick at the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels in Downtown Los Angeles at 12:30 p.m. 

Through anointing, the grace of the Holy Spirit comforts and strengthens the soul of the sick person. The Order of Malta is hosting the event and will distribute water brought back from the spring in Lourdes that started to flow when the Blessed Virgin Mary appeared to St. Bernadette on Feb. 11, 1858. Since then, 69 physical miracles have been recognized to have occurred at Lourdes, along with many more spiritual and unrecognized miracles.