Suffering and pain are part of the human conditions. Christians feel and experience pain as do all other people; yet their faith helps them to grasp more deeply the mystery of suffering and to bear their pain with greater courage (The Rite of the Pastoral care for the Sick). Jesus showed great compassion for sick people. Some he healed. By His own suffering, however, He showed all of us how our suffering can be a path to personal growth and a means of redemption for others. For Christians, no suffering is meaningless. It is a share in the life of Jesus. It is a share in His saving mission. The Church strengthens those who are in danger of death with the Anointing of the Sick. This sacrament has been practiced since the time of the Apostles (see James 5:14-15). The sign of this sacrament is sacred oil applied to the forehead and hands by a priest, who recites the prayers of the Church. Jesus commissioned the ‘apostles’ to preach the good news to the people for a true repentance of their sins, cast out demons and anoint them with the oil of healing (Mt. 6:12-13).
The Primary aim of the Sacrament of Anointing of the Sick is the healing of those who are sick. It may involve physical healing, spiritual healing, promise of restoration or it may guide one to resurrection into God’s Kingdom, that belongs to God to decide.
The sacrament of Anointing is open to all who have health problems due to illness or age, or have impending surgery. Through the Sacrament of Anointing, the Church supports the sick and the elderly in their struggle against illness and continues Christ’s work of healing. The Sacrament expresses the sharing that each one of us has in the suffering of others. Even if you have participated in the celebration of the Anointing of the Sick in the past, we welcome you to join the Holy Mass of Healing.
Therefore, A SPECIAL MASS FOR ANOINTING OF THE SICK is scheduled at St. Dominic Parish, Cold Lake; on Monday, February 1st at 7:00 PM. You will be administered the Sacrament of the Sick during the Mass. This administration of the sacrament of the sick in this context is offered for those Catholics, who are experiencing physical ailments of a serious nature: those who will be undergoing surgery for serious reasons, the elderly who have become notably weakened even though no serious illness is present, those who are battling serious illnesses and have not been anointed recently, and children who have reached the age of reason and are seriously ill. At the same time, the argument that “everyone is sick in some way and is ok to receive the sacrament” could be an abuse of the sacrament. That can be a sacrilege too. The recipient must be in a state of grace for the true benefit of the sacrament to be received so it is helpful to receive the Sacrament of Penance and Holy Communion when possible. I highly recommend you all to bring your loved ones who are baptized Catholics for the celebration of the Healing Mass and Sacrament of the Anointing to experience the love and compassion of our Lord.
Fr. Jacob Alvares, SAC.