We read in the New Testament that that when people were sick, the apostles would lay hands on them and anoint them with oil. Oil is a sign in the scriptures of God’s special presence and protection. The Church continues this ministry to this day.
Sickness doesn’t just mean physical pain or incapacity. God wants to heal us of all our infirmity and troubles, be that of body, mind or spirit.
In the sacrament of anointing, a priest lays his hands on the sick person, praying for that individual. He then rubs olive oil, which has been blessed by a bishop, into their forehead and onto their hands in the sign of the cross, signifying through his touch the touch of Jesus himself.
Through the outward sign of oil and touch, God gives grace to uphold the sick or troubled, renews their faith, and strengthens them in order to give them healing and peace.
Please be in touch if you or anyone you know would like to receive the sacrament of anointing. It is particularly appropriate if you have fallen ill, are about to have an operation, or are recovering from a period of sickness. It is also given as a strength and blessing for those who are dying and in the last hours of their life on earth. It can also be received if you need God’s strength in a period of depression, anxiety, or spiritual weakness.