5.5.1 Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick

1. The Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick is to be conferred only by a priest and according to Pastoral Care of the Sick: Rites of Anointing and Viaticum as well as the provisions of canon law. [1]

2. Provided that people are not indiscriminately anointed (such as the aged who are not in a weakened condition or those who are not seriously ill), pastors, parochial administrators, rectors and chaplains are authorized to celebrate or permit the Anointing of the Sick with a large congregation (i.e., a communal celebration). [2]

3. The priest should always offer the Sacrament of Reconciliation prior to Anointing if the one to be anointed desires it and is able to participate.



[1] cc. 998-1007.  Pastoral Care of the Sick: Rites of Anointing and Viaticum (1972; ICEL;USA, 1982), nn. 815. [Hereafter Anointing or Pastoral Care of the Sick.] Also see  USCCB, Guidelines for the Celebration of the Sacraments with Persons with Disabilities (rev. June 2017), nn. 32-35.

[2] Anointing, nn. 108-110 (Anointing of the Sick with a Large Congregation); c. 1002; BCL Newsletter, March 1974.


Date approved by Bishop


Posted by
Msgr. S. J. Raica, chancellor