Anointing of the Sick

Once referred to as the  ‘Last Rites’ or ‘Extreme Unction’, since the Second Vatican Council the Church has revised its understanding of this Sacrament and named it for what it is, the Sacrament of Anointing of the Sick.

So what is it for?  When administered in the early stages of illness, a person may experience the strength and renewal of God’s Holy Spirit in body, mind and/or spirit. It also confers upon those anointed the assurance of Reconciliation. The Sacrament is meant to be associated with assisting life, healing and health. It often brings hope, comfort and peace to an ill or dying person. This sacrament is administered to a Catholic person who is seriously ill, preparing for an operation, or is in poor health due to advanced age.  The effects for which we pray in this sacrament are:

 · To bring peace & comfort to the sick, assisting against anxiety or loneliness

· To give the sick person strength

· To renew and increase their hope

· To forgive sins and aid conversion

· To help perseverance in suffering and pain

· To bring healing to body, mind and spirit

· To assure the sick of the prayers and support of the Church and its people

The ‘Anointing of the Sick’ is not meant as the final act of prayer for a dying person. Primarily, it is a sacrament offered to those who need assistance for this life. However, it can be given to a dying person if they haven’t previously been anointed as a preparation for death.

For those going to hospital, we would ask that you contact the Parish Office before you are admitted to hospital so we may celebrate the sacrament with you.  Upon arrival to hospital state on your hospital form that you are Catholic and wish to be visited by one of our pastoral care staff who visit the hospitals. The Gold Coast Public Hospital, Allamanda Private Hospital and Pacific Private Hospital (Palliative Care) have our parish contact details.

Nursing homes and hostels in our parish are visited regularly. By contacting the parish office the Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick can be arranged for those who are in need of it.  Likewise, those who are seriously ill at home or are housebound can be visited for the celebration of this sacrament through contacting the parish office.