In Divine Worship and Human Healing Bruce Morrill turns to the rites serving the sick, dying, deceased, and grieving to show why sacramental liturgy is so fundamental to the life of faith. Readers will appreciate both his compelling narratives from actual pastoral experience and his engagement with biblical, theological, historical, and social-scientific resources. Morrill invites readers to discover how the liturgical ministry of healing discloses God’s merciful love amid communities of faith.
Anointing the Sick is the LAST sacrament or covenant (promise) Jesus left the Apostoles with before going back to Heaven. In many ways, this is one of the most important sacraments any CHRISTIAN (Catholic or Non-Catholic) can receive. It may even be the last possible opportunity for them to receive God’s Mercy before death and Heaven or Hell for eternity. The sacrament is primarily for those who are sick (physically or spiritually) or the elderly. You be the judge, you know if you feel bad or if your spirit is ill. Please go to the Mass for the anointing. It will only take an hour at most.
You may wonder what are the benefits of receiving the anointing. Not only are ALL SINS forgiven you can receive a plenary indulgence. You must say an Our Father or Hail Mary for the Holy Father to receive it. This means if you die that day you would go straight to Heaven. It’s pretty exciting if you ask me.
There are many fallen-away Catholics who do not even know they can receive this sacrament when they get old or become ill physically or spiritually. Just knowing they can call any Priest anywhere in the world to receive this anointing may be the difference between Heaven (happiness and love forever) or Hell (hatred and misery) for all time.
Furthermore, many people do not know there is usually an annual Catholic Mass for anointing the sick. Call any Catholic Church and find out the date and time for this Mass. If that church doesn’t do it, they can refer you to a Catholic Church that does the anointing. Just mark your calendar and GO TO THIS MASS. You do not need to call or say anything just go to the Mass.
When the Priest is ready during this Mass, he stands facing the Congregation and begins anointing people standing in line. He may or may not say a few words about the anointing and who it is for. Some Priests still think this sacrament is for the old and seriously ill, but don’t be intimidated, he will not question you. Primarily, it is for those who are old and or sick. People tend to think this just means a physical illness, but what about your soul, your spirit? You are supposed to go to confession for this, but there may not be time. The main purpose of this sacrament is to heal those who are ill spiritually as well as physically.
You may be having a serious operation, going off to war, or are a police officer, fireman, or anyone else who has a dangerous occupation. These people may be well but face death daily. Think about it, someone who is a racecar driver, paratrooper, fighter pilot, a steelworker high above in the streets could slip and fall at any moment and die suddenly. These people need this sacrament desperately. They should receive the sacrament annually just in case they have sinned and not had a chance to go for Reconciliation for the forgiveness of all sins.
Actually, all baptized persons who are Catholics, fallen-away Catholics, or even non-Catholics can receive the sacrament of Anointing of the Sick. Repent immediately and directly to Our Lord Jesus Christ being truly sorry for all your sins if confessing sins isn’t possible to a Priest. You may not have time or a chance to go to reconciliation, but you should at the earliest opportunity.
During the Anointing the Sick Mass, when it is your turn standing in line, all you have to do is hold out the palms of both hands. The Priest says a few prayers and makes the sign of the cross on the palm of both hands and your forehead. That is it! Our Merciful Lord and Savior does all the rest. He wants you to be with Him forever in Heaven and all your sins are forgiven during the anointing.
The most important thing for you to do is to be truly sorry for all past sins no matter how bad they were. If you have committed a murder, for example, you may feel unworthy and not go to this Mass for healing your broken spirit. Trust God, be really sorry, and go to the Mass the anointing annually. Some churches may do the anointing more often. Repent and go to reconciliation as soon as possible to save the precious life God created for you. It is your life, you may never have another chance to save your soul from damnation. Remember, if death is imminent call a Catholic Priest immediately. He will come to you at home or the hospital.