Anointing of the Sick

Sickness is not something anyone schedules into his or her life, so this healing work of Jesus is celebrated according to need. The local hospitals often have a priest on staff to provide sacramental care, but if needed the pastor will travel as necessary to a home or a care facility. It truly is a sacrament of healing, should not be postponed until someone is near death, and may be repeated more than once if an illness worsens with time.

The “Last Rites” is older terminology for a bundle of Sacraments that may be received at the same time if the patient is near death but still conscious: Sacramental Reconciliation, the Anointing of the Sick, and Communion for the Dying (also called, Viaticum). Holy Communion as Viaticum can be received repeatedly during a final illness, apart from the other sacraments.