Anointing of the Sick Essay

843 WordsMar 17, 20154 Pages
Anointing of the Sick is defined in the Roman Catholic Church as the sacramental anointing of the ill or infirm with blessed oil. The sacrament is described as a “joyful encounter” for the entire community (Anointing). According to Catholic doctrine, Anointing of the Sick serves as a channel for special graces from God that comfort and heal, both physically and spiritually, people who are seriously ill and in danger of death. This sacrament of healing strengthens the sick and suffering members of the Church to “contribute to the good of the people of God by freely uniting themselves to the passion and death of christ” (Amodei). Anointing of the Sick is a means of prayer for the recovery of a sick person and offering confession and absolution of sin. During the sacrament, the priest lays his hands on the head of the sick person and proceeds to anoint with the blessed Oil of the Sick. The form and matter are an important component in this sacrament. The words spoken during this sacrament are “Through this holy anointing may the Lord in his love and mercy help you with the grace of the Holy Spirit.” The matter of this healing sacrament is the gesture of anointing with oil and the element of Sacred Oil (Amodei). The Sacred Oil is the primary symbol of the sacrament of Anointing of the Sick. The oil, which receives a different blessing than the traditional chrism, is blessed by the bishop of the diocese at the Chrism mass celebrated on Holy Thursday. Ongoing effects of the sacrament of Anointing of the Sick include that “it confers grace, remits sin, and comforts the sick” (Council of Trent). The sacrament of Anointing of the Sick dates back to early teachings. The sacrament was sculpted from the healings and practices of Jesus and his first followers. The formation of this sacrament drew heavily from the passage from James 5:14-16, “Is anyone

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