Next Sunday, April 26th, we will celebrate the Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick within the Sunday Mass at 2:00 p.m. at Resurrection Parish, Lexington. Fr. Jim Sanford from Shelby will come to help administer this Sacrament and the Eucharist. Persons who attend this Mass are requested to seat themselves in every other pew. This will facilitate bringing the Sacraments to the recipients. Participating at this Mass fulfills our serious responsibility to come to Mass each weekend.
Sooner or later, unless we die suddenly, we each will experience the need for the Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick. This Sacrament, in a unique way, can strengthen and support us in situations of declining efficiency. A number of painful experiences can cripple our ability to function as we would like to do this or as we used to be able to do this. These include, but are not limited to: discovering the presence of a debilitating condition, such as heart disease, cancer, multiple sclerosis; if any of these conditions worsen; living with a chronic, disabling situation, such as seizures; suffering from anxiety and/or depression; being homebound; facing major surgery; being seriously injured in a mishap…
At the heart of the celebration of the Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick are the actions of the Laying on of Hands by the celebrant(s) and the Anointing of the foreheads and the hands of the recipients.
The Lord tailor-makes the benefits of this Sacrament for those who receive it. For some, healing may result. Several witness to receiving peace of mind and soul as they face the challenging situations before them. Especially for those who are unable to celebrate the Sacrament of Penance, the Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick brings the forgiveness of all sins to those who receive it. Many family members are comforted when their seriously-ailing loved ones receive this Sacrament. What is offered to all recipients are the grace and strength to face all debilitating situations in a proactive manner. Persons who received this Sacrament are empowered to offer up their sufferings in and with those of Christ to extend His redeeming work in the world. This Sacrament highlights the communal nature of our faith in Christ when we suffer. What a blessing it is to be reassured that in our health afflictions, we are supported by the prayers and loving concerns of the Church.
Let’s pray that several will want to avail themselves of the Lord’s healing Presence as this is offered in a distinctive way in the Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick.
Warmly yours in Christ,
Fr. Nelson G. Beaver