Sacrament of the sick – Housebound

When Jesus went ashore, he saw a great crowd and had compassion for them and cured their sick. (Matthew 14:14)

Christ’s compassion toward the sick and his many healings of every kind of infirmity are a resplendent sign that “God has visited his people” (Lk 7:16; Mt 4:24) and that the Kingdom of God is close at hand.

His compassion toward all who suffer goes so far that he identifies himself with them: “I was sick and you visited me” (Mt 25:36).

 

The sick and housebound of the parish are attended by in their homes by the members of the parish team every month. Ministers of the Eucharist are also available to distribute Holy Communion to the sick on Sundays or in time of need.

The Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick is one of two Sacraments of Healing, the other being Penance/Reconciliation. Anointing is available at any time by appointment with one of the priests of the parish or at times throughout the year.

If you are housebound and would like to receive Holy Communion from a member of the parish team please call the Parish Office or contact the Parish Pastoral Worker to make arrangements.

Many sick people also like to receive the Sacrament of the Sick and are strengthened and affirmed.
If you would like to receive the Sacrament of the Sick, this can be arranged during the Priests visit to the Housebound or by contacting the Parish Office at 059 862 3154.

What Is the Sacrament of the Sick 

The Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick is exactly what it says. It is a prayerful celebration for someone or for a group of people who are ill and are blessed by the priest with Holy Oil. It is not a sign that someone is dying as it was perceived in olden times. It is not a magical ritual; the person doesn’t automatically get better immediately after an anointing. God’s healing and loving presence are called upon that the sick person might be raised up and restored to health.

Symbolism

The words of blessing over the oil say it all. It is “oil intended to ease the sufferings of your people”. Oil soothes and heals. Oil blessed for the sick is a sign of the Anointed One (Messiah) of God. The person so anointed receives the healing, saving power of the One who saves (Messiah).

Oil

The oil that is used is Olive Oil. The Bishop and priests bless it at the ‘Chrism Mass’ on Holy Thursday in the Cathedral.The holy oils are then taken each year to each parish and hospital for use throughout the year in the Sacrament of the Sick.

How?

A person is anointed on the forehead and the palms of the hands while the priest says: “Through this holy anointing may the Lord in his love and mercy help you by the grace of the Holy Spirit. May the Lord who heals you, save you and raise you up.”

Who Can Be Anointed?

Anyone in ’serious illness’, those who are infirm, in advanced years, or anyone prior to surgery. (It is not only for when a person is in ‘danger of death’.