Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick
What is the Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick
The Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick is a sacrament instituted by Christ, which is intended to strengthen those who are being tried by illness. It is recommended to the faithful by the Apostles James: "Is any among you sick? Let him call for 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 will save the sick man, and the Lord will raise him up; and if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven" (James 5:14-15).
It is given to those who are seriously ill by anointing them on the forehead and hands with duly blessed oil - pressed from olives or from other plants - saying, only once: "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."
Who Receives This Sacrament
The Anointing of the Sick is given to anyone of the faithful who begins to be in danger of death from sickness or old age. If a sick person who received this anointing recovers his health, he can in the case of another grave illness receive this sacrament again. If during the same illness the person's condition becomes more serious, the sacrament may be repeated. It is fitting to receive the Anointing of the Sick just prior to a serious operation or when an elderly’s frailty becomes more pronounced.
Who Can Administer the Sacrament?
Only priests and bishops.