Sunday, October 23, 2011, 12:00 AM - 12:00 AM
Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick
Next weekend, our parish is celebrating a communal Anointing of the Sick. What is the Anointing of the Sick? It is one of the seven sacraments, which are visible channels of grace flowing from Jesus Christ. The Anointing of the Sick is one of two healing sacraments (the other being confession), and it is administered to members of the parish community who have fallen ill or are suffering from physical, emotional or other types of distress. During this sacrament, the priest anoints the recipient's head with the oil of the sick, which has been blessed by our Bishop at the annual Chrism Mass prior to Holy Week. The benefits of this sacrament include an outpouring of grace, alleviation of pain, and peace of mind and body.
The Anointing of the Sick has been practiced by the Catholic Church since the beginning. St. James encourages all Christians to observe this sacrament, which is recorded in the New Testament: "Is anyone sick among you? Let him bring in the priests of the Church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord. And the prayer of faith shall save the sick man, and the Lord shall raise him up, and if he has any sins, they shall be forgiven him" (James 5:14-15).
Michael Gray - Seminarian