20,000 sick or disabled people gathered in Rome between Friday and Sunday on the occasion of the Jubilee of the Sick and the Disabled. During the solemn mass on 12 June, Pope Francis denounced the “exclusion of handicapped people” and the “illusion” under which some people live “by closing their eyes to the disease and handicap”,considering that “a sick or handicapped person cannot be happy because he/she is incapable of having the lifestyle imposed by the culture of entertainment and fun”.
In our society, “care for one’s body has become an obsession and a big business”.“Anything imperfect must be hidden away, since it threatens the happiness and serenity of the privileged few and endangers the dominant model,” explained the Pope. This culture keeps the disabled apart, “in some ‘enclosure’ –even a gilded one– or in ‘islands’ of pietism or social welfare, so that they do not hold back the pace of false well-being. In some cases we are even told that it is better to eliminate them as soon as possible, because they become an unacceptable burden in time of crisis”.
“The real meaning of life also has to do with accepting suffering and limitations” and “the world does not become better because only apparently ‘perfect’ live there”, emphasised the Holy Father.