38. Last Rites

Catholic Position

¶1517 Like all the sacraments the Anointing of the Sick is a liturgical
and communal celebration, whether it takes place in the family home, a
hospital or church, for a single sick person or a whole group of sick
persons. It is very fitting to celebrate it within the Eucharist,
the   memorial of the Lord’s Passover. If circumstances
suggest it, the celebration of the sacrament can be preceded by the
sacrament of Penance and followed by the sacrament of the Eucharist. As
the sacrament of Christ’s Passover the Eucharist should always be the
last sacrament of the earthly journey, the “viaticum” for “passing
over” to eternal life.

¶1523 A preparation for the final journey. If the sacrament of
anointing of the sick is given to all who suffer from serious illness
and infirmity, even more rightly is it given to those at the point of
departing this life; so it is also called sacramentum exeuntium (the
sacrament of those departing). The Anointing of the Sick completes our
conformity to the death and Resurrection of Christ, just as Baptism
began it. It completes the holy anointings that mark the whole
Christian life: that of Baptism which sealed the new life in us, and
that of Confirmation which strengthened us for the combat of this life.
This last anointing fortifies the end of our earthly life like a solid
rampart for the final struggles before entering the Father’s house.

¶1516 Only priests (bishops and presbyters) are ministers of the
Anointing of the Sick. It is the duty of pastors to instruct the
faithful on the benefits of this sacrament. The faithful should
encourage the sick to call for a priest to receive this sacrament. The
sick should prepare themselves to receive it with good dispositions,
assisted by their pastor and the whole ecclesial community, which is
invited to surround the sick in a special way through their prayers and
fraternal attention.

¶1524 In addition to the Anointing of the Sick, the Church offers those
who are about to leave this life the Eucharist as viaticum. Communion
in the body and blood of Christ, received at this moment of “passing
over” to the Father, has a particular significance and importance. It
is the seed of eternal life and the power of resurrection, according to
the words of the Lord: “He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has
eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day.” The sacrament
of Christ once dead and now risen, the Eucharist is here the sacrament
of passing over from death to life, from this world to the Father.

¶1515 If a sick person who received this anointing recovers his health,
he can in the case of another grave illness receive this sacrament
again. If during the same illness the person’s condition becomes more
serious, the sacrament may be repeated. It is fitting to receive the
Anointing of the Sick just prior to a serious operation. The same holds
for the elderly whose frailty becomes more pronounced.

” . . . let him call for the presbyters of the Church”

Scripture Says

Philippians 3:8-9
8  Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the
excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have
suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may
win Christ,
9 ¶  And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which
is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the
righteousness which is of God by faith:

2 Timothy 4:6-7
6  For I am now ready to be offered, and the time of my departure is at hand.
7  I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith:

Matthew 15:9
9  But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.


  • This Catholic doctrine is never preached in the Bible.
  • This Catholic doctrine is never practiced in the Bible.
  • Will you live in sin and hold out hope that a priest will whisk you away from the grasp of Satan by this unbiblical practice?
  • Or will you bow to Jesus now?