The Sacrament of
A communal celebration of the Sacrament
of the Anointing of the Sick will take place at St. James Cathedral on
Saturday, February 11, 2017, the Memorial of Our Lady of Lourdes, at a
special 10:30am Mass. Father Ryan will preside. All are welcome to
attend the Mass.
What is the sacrament of Anointing of
The sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick is one
of the seven sacraments of the Catholic Church. Like the sacrament
of reconciliation (confession), it is a sacrament of healing. Our
understanding of this sacrament has changed with time. In the
early Church it was seen as a sacrament of healing, but later it came to
be known as “Extreme Unction” – literally, “last anointing” – and was
not administered until death was imminent. With the reforms of the
Second Vatican Council, the Church has returned to the more ancient
practice with regard to this sacrament.
Who can receive
Catholics, both children and adults, who are
seriously ill, facing surgery, or experiencing the weakness that comes
with old age should seek this sacrament. Those with serious, chronic
mental or physical illness may also receive the anointing of the sick.
What happens during the Rite of Anointing?
Rite of Anointing will be celebrated in the context of a special Mass on
Saturday, February 11 at 10:30am.
After the homily, the Liturgy of Anointing begins. The priest
leads a litany in which all pray for the healing and forgiveness of the
sick person, as well as for doctors, nurses, and caregivers. Then,
in silence, the priest lays his hands on the head of the sick person, an
ancient gesture of prayer that is used in connection with many of the
sacraments, especially the Sacrament of Reconciliation and Holy Orders.
After the laying on of hands, each sick person is anointed with the
Oil of the Sick (pure olive oil, blessed each year by the Archbishop at
the Chrism Mass). The sick person is anointed on the forehead and
then on the hands, and simple words accompany the anointing:
“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.” A concluding prayer follows, and
if the sacrament takes place in the context of the Mass, the Liturgy of
the Eucharist continues as usual.
No RSVP is required.
Information, Corinna Laughlin, 206-264-2086, or e-mail