As part of our Lenten journey Fr Bernard Confer, OP, Chaplain to the Dominican Nuns on Doat Street, will offer the sacrament of the Annointing of the Sick following our 10:30 Mass. The purpose of this sacrament is the conferral of a special grace on the Christian experiencing the difficulties inherent in the condition of grave illness or old age. The oil used in administering the sacrament of Anointing of the Sick is called Oil of the Sick. It is one of the three Holy oils blessed by Bishop Malone at the Chrism Mass during Holy Week. The other two Holy Oils are Holy Chrism and the Oil of Catechumens, which is used in Baptism.
Oil of the Sick is pure olive oil. Its appropriateness as part of the outward sign of Anointing of the Sick is evident from the healing and strengthening effects which are characteristic of olive oil. The essence of the sacrament lies in the actual anointing and the short prayer which accompanies the anointing. In giving the sacrament, the priest anoints the sick person on the forehead and hands. During this anointing, the priest says: “Through this holy anointing may the Lord in his love and mercy help you with the grace of the Holy Spirit. May the Lord who frees you from sin save you and raise you up.”