When should I get the Anointing of the Sick?
First, what is anointing of the sick?
One should note that it is no longer called the “Last Rites.” The Anointing of the Sick is when a Priest prays for a person’s health and well being. He uses Sacred Oil, blessed by the Bishop on Holy Thursday; the oil is applied to the forehead, and the palms of the hands. Part of the prayers includes the remission of sins for the person who is to be anointed (this is why a Deacon cannot perform this sacrament).
Who should get the Anointing?
The answer is not as complicated as it would seem. The best time is prior to when you are about to have any type of medical procedure where you will be given anesthesia. Also, when you have any illness or medical condition that you would have that causes you grave concern.
Should I wait until I am near death to get anointed?
Absolutely not! The anointing should have been done long before this point. If a person knows that they are near death, and can still take communion, they should have Viaticum (Latin: food for the journey) brought to them.
Can the anointing be done more than once?
Yes it can, though it is recommended that you only get anointed once for each new medical condition, or if there is a change in the status of the condition.
Arrange for an Anointing:
If you or have a family member that needs to have an anointing please call the Christian Service office, and our Christian Service Director will arrange to have the anointing done.
Deacon Bob Dreyer