If you are seriously or chronically ill, weakened by age, or preparing for serious surgery, there is a powerful help available for you here in our Church. Most especially, we want you to be spiritually fortified and experience the peace that God alone can give. So it is natural and wise to turn to God, our Father, and to Jesus, our Savior, with your needs, physical, emotional, and spiritual.
The anointing of the sick is a sacrament of healing, in which the priest prays, lays hands, and anoints the sick person with blessed oil. It may be preceded by the sacrament of reconciliation and followed by Eucharist. The sacrament may be repeated if the recipient suffers from a different illness or injury or if the same illness or condition becomes more serious. Elderly people may be anointed if they have become weakened even though no serious illness is present.
The idea behind this sacrament is that we are all members of the body of Christ. When one of us suffers, all of us suffer, and all of God’s creation suffers with us. Through the Sacrament of Anointing, Christ strengthens the faithful who are afflicted by illness, providing them with the strongest means of support. Jesus showed great concern for the bodily and spiritual welfare of the sick and commanded his followers to do the same. The celebration of this sacrament is an opportunity for the deepening of the faith of the community who are able to witness the faith and devotion of those being anointed.
This is a ministry of comfort. Through Anointing, the sick are reminded that Christ and the Church are in communion with their suffering. The Holy Spirit shares the blessings of health, trust in God, and strength against temptation. In ‘olden days’, people waited until the person was near death before they called the priest. Today it is preferred that the priest be called at the beginning of a serious illness and not at the end. The Catechism puts it this way: “The Anointing of the Sick ‘is not a sacrament for those only who are at the point of death. Hence, as soon as anyone of the faithful begins to be in danger of death from sickness or old age, the fitting time for him to receive this sacrament has certainly already arrived.’”
Starting August 28, 2017, Fr. Serge Maniba accompanied by EMHC senior ministers, has been visiting sick patients in the parish and giving the sacrament of Anointing of the Sick every Monday. Fr. Serge also hears confessions during these visits. The practice will be continuing over the next several Monday until further notice.
If you or someone you know needs the anointing, please call the Parish office at 633-0280, any Tuesday to Sunday, from 8 am to 12 noon, and 1:30 pm to 5 pm. You can also speak with the officiating priest after Mass for an anointing appointment. Depending on availability, one of our priests can set up an appointment for the anointing, whether in the hospital, at home, or in a care facility.
Who It’s For?