Anointing of the Sick/Last Rites
Are any among you sick? They should call for the elders of the church and have them pray over them, anointing them with oil in the name of the Lord. (James 5:14)
The anointing of the sick with holy oil for healing is an ancient custom of the Church. Sometimes called Holy Unction, this sacrament has often been tied to last rites, or the ceremonies that accompany a person into death. But Unction of the Sick is not only for use in cases of extreme illness. We offer prayers of blessing and anointing with holy oil (oil blessed by a bishop for this particular purpose) to all who desire it upon request. Anointing is also appropriate before surgeries or medical procedures, or any time that one is in need of God’s strong healing presence.