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World Day of the Sick

Quick Facts

World Day of the Sick is a global event when people remember or pray for the sick.

Local names

NameLanguage
World Day of the SickEnglish
Jornada Mundial del EnfermoSpanish
היום עולמי של החוליםHebrew
يوم المريض العالميArabic
세계 병자의 날Korean
Welttag der KrankenGerman

World Day of the Sick 2014

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

World Day of the Sick 2015

Wednesday, February 11, 2015
List of dates for other years

February 11 is World Day of the Sick, an observation started by Pope John Paul II as a way for believers to offer prayers for those suffering from illnesses. The day coincides with the commemoration of Our Lady of Lourdes.

Woman praying with sick patient in hospital.

©iStockphoto.com/AtnoYdur

Commemorate World Day of the Sick

People around the world take the time to pray for the sick and for those who work very hard to alleviate the sufferings of the sick on this day. Faith organizations mark this day especially to provide the sick with medicines, food, and spiritual guidance.

Public life

World Day of the Sick is not an official holiday so businesses, schools and government offices are open.

About World Day of the Sick

Pope John Paul II initiated the day in 1992 to encourage people to pray for those who suffer from illness and for their caregivers. The Pope himself had been diagnosed with Parkinson’s a year before, in 1991, and it is considered that his own illness was impetus for his designation of the day.

World Day of the Sick was first observed on February 11, 1993. February 11 is also the Catholic Feast of Our Lady of Lourdes, which a name is given to the Virgin Mary in honor of the apparitions that were said to have been seen in and around Lourdes, France, by a young girl called Bernadette Soubirous. The Church canonized Bernadette as a saint several years later.

Did you know?

Pope Benedict XVI declared his decision to resign from his post as the Pope on this day in 2013. He cited his failing health as the reason behind his decision.

World Day of the Sick Observances

WeekdayDateYearNameHoliday typeWhere it is observed
MonFeb 112013World Day of the SickWorldwide observance 
TueFeb 112014World Day of the SickWorldwide observance 
WedFeb 112015World Day of the SickWorldwide observance 
ThuFeb 112016World Day of the SickWorldwide observance 
SatFeb 112017World Day of the SickWorldwide observance 
SunFeb 112018World Day of the SickWorldwide observance 
MonFeb 112019World Day of the SickWorldwide observance 
TueFeb 112020World Day of the SickWorldwide observance 
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