Jesus sent his twelve apostles two by two to teach and heal in His name. After the resurrection of Jesus, an anointing with oil brought His healing to the sick. “Is anyone sick among you? He should summon the presbyters of the church, and they should pray over him and anoint him with oil in the name of the Lord, and the prayer of faith will save the sick person and the Lord will raise him up. If he has committed any sins, he will be forgiven.”
The pastoral practice of the church today calls for the anointing of the sick in case of serious illness, physical, emotional or mental. A person may b anointed when sick with pneumonia, preparing for surgery, seriously depressed or when weak from the burdens of old age.
Extreme Unction or the Last Rites are the last rites of Confession, Communion and Anointing and these sacraments are given when an individual is close to death.
This sacrament provides sacramental grace and spiritual comfort to those who are seriously ill, facing surgery, or elderly. Through this sacrament the Church prays that the recipient may receive strength to deal with their illness or condition. It is no longer reserved for those whose death is imminent, but instead provides grace for spiritual comfort and healing; it can be received multiple times. It can be preceded by the sacrament of Penance and followed by the sacrament of the Eucharist. It is available at any time upon request to one of our priests, and can also be received at healing Masses and prayer services which are held from time to time. It can also be requested in the hospital where a chaplain priest may administer the sacrament.