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Anointing of the Sick

Anointing of the Sick

The Sacrament of Anointing of the Sick is for the healing and spiritual strengthening of those who are impaired by sickness or old age. The Rite of Anointing tells us there is no need to wait until a person is at the point of death to receive the Sacrament; therefore, please request the Sacrament when illness is discovered.  The Sacrament may also be repeated if the sick person becomes ill again after the anointing.  A person should be anointed before surgery when a dangerous illness is the reason for such intervention. 

The presence of loved ones and friends who pray along with the priest is important at the anointing. Only bishops and priests may be ministers of this Sacrament, whereby the priest places his hands upon the ill with the blessed Oil of the Sick, accompanied by the words: "Through this holy anointing, may the Lord in his love and mercy help you with the grace of the Holy Spirit.  May the Lord who frees you from sin save you and raise you up" (CCC. no. 1513). 
 

For those who are about to depart from this life, the Church offers the person Penance, Anointing of the Sick, and the Eucharist as  Viaticum  (food for the journey) given at the end of life. These are "the sacraments that prepare for our heavenly homeland" (cf. CCC, no. 1525). These rites are fundamental beliefs to our Catholic faith and are powerful aids to a good death.Since Holy iCommunion is the effective sign of Christ's Paschal Mystery, it becomes for the recipient the opportunity to unite one's own suffering and dying to that of Christ with the hope of eternal life with Him (USCCB, Anointing of the Sick: Joined to Christ, Witnesses of Hope and Healing).