PCS 51-53: Communion & Anointing of the Sick

The specific introduction for anointing of the sick concludes with these three sections, the first of which promotes the Communion service. Note the value for both union with Christ and the “eucharistic community.”

51. Because the sick are prevented from celebrating the eucharist with the rest of the community, the most important visits are those during which they receive holy communion. In receiving the body and blood of Christ, the sick are united sacramentally to the Lord and are reunited with the eucharistic community from which illness has separated them.

Two paragraphs on anointing:


52. The priest should be especially concerned for those whose health has been seriously impaired by illness or old age. He will offer them a new sign of hope: the laying on of hands and the anointing of the sick accompanied by the prayer of faith (James 5:14). Those who receive this sacrament in the faith of the Church will find it a true sign of comfort and support in time of trial. It will work to overcome the sickness, if this is God’s will,


53. Some types of mental sickness are now classified as serious. Those who are judged to have a serious mental illness and who would be strengthened by the sacrament may be anointed (see no. 5). The anointing may be repeated in accordance with the conditions for other kinds of serious illness (see no. 9).

Never fear; the framers of the 1983 Rite PCS make explicit the need to recognize illnesses of the mind. I believe that addictions would certainly have been included by name were the PCS rite to be redone today. Most clergy and pastoral care ministers are wise enough to consider it for those in their spiritual care.

About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in Minnesota, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
This entry was posted in Pastoral Care of the Sick, post-conciliar liturgy documents, Rites. Bookmark the permalink.

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