Anointing of the Sick
|“Is anyone among you suffering? You should pray....
Is anyone among you sick? You should summon the presbyters of the church, and they should pray over you and anoint you with oil in the name of the Lord, and the prayer of faith will save you, and the Lord will raise you up. If you have committed any sins, you will be forgiven.” (James 5:13-15)
Anointing of the Sick is a sacrament of healing and is the prayer of Christ and his Church for the physical and spiritual health of a sick person. The sacrament was formerly called Extreme Unction or the Last Rites. In the past, the anointing was done near the time of death. The new rites restore a proper balance between pastoral ministry to the sick and pastoral ministry to the dying. Therefore, the sacrament can and should be given to anyone facing serious illness or a serious medical event, such as major surgery.
The Church encourages this sacrament to be a communal rite, and family members are invited to be present and involved. For example, there is a reading from scripture, which the priest may ask a family member to read, and a laying on of hands, in which the priest may ask all present for participation.
This sacrament is often accompanied by the sacraments of Reconciliation and the Eucharist.
If you, or a family member, are ill and would like the healing blessing known as Anointing of the Sick, please call the St. Barnabas Rectory at 773-779-1166 at any time. Arrangements will be made with one of the priests for the sacrament.
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St. Barnabas also offers a Mass for the Anointing of the Sick, typically in the fall, at which persons may be anointed. This yearly mass presents an additional opportunity for persons who might not otherwise seek to take advantage of the sacrament. For example, anointing is appropriate for the elderly, even if they are not suffering from a dangerous illness, as well as for those suffering from a chronic illness or persons suffering with mental illness or addiction. Feel free to call the rectory with any questions you may have about the sacrament of anointing.