Why and when do we anoint the sick? Fr. Mario Amore answers some of these questions about this sacrament of healing.
So the verdict is still out on this question. You know, when should somebody receive the anointing of the sick? If someone is just going into surgery, if somebody has the sniffles, like, what's the line here?
I mean, the easy one is somebody who's kind of on their death bed or approaching it. Don't wait until somebody is about to die to call the priest and receive the anointing. When somebody begins to decline, call him then.
If somebody is dealing with, you know, some kind of major surgery or recovery, that's a time. Others would say that, you know, even somebody who is experiencing mental illness could be anointed, you know, every so often.
The anointing of the sick is a sacrament of healing for two reasons. It's a sacrament of healing in that we're forgiven of our sins. The other is that, through God's grace, it could provide a physical healing or an emotional healing.
So let's go back to that first one, that forgiveness of sins. When somebody receives the anointing, if they're able, there's a part in the rite where a person should verbally confess their sins. If someone is not able to do that, the anointing in itself takes care of that.
I would say any time someone is faced with the possibility of death, or any other kind of illnesses that we would pray for healing for.