Catechism of the Catholic Church

380 Part Two 1518 Word and sacrament form an indivisible whole. The Lit- urgy of the Word, preceded by an act of repentance, opens the celebration. The words of Christ, the witness of the apostles, awaken the faith of the sick person and of the community to ask the Lord for the strength of his Spirit. 1519 The celebration of the sacrament includes the following principal elements: the “priests of the Church” 133 —in silence—lay hands on the sick; they pray over them in the faith of the Church 134 ​ —this is the epiclesis proper to this sacrament; they then anoint them with oil blessed, if possible, by the bishop. These liturgical actions indicate what grace this sacrament confers upon the sick. IV. T he E ffects of the C elebration of T his S acrament 1520 A particular gift of the Holy Spirit. The first grace of this sacrament is one of strengthening, peace and courage to overcome the difficulties that go with the condition of serious illness or the frailty of old age. This grace is a gift of the Holy Spirit, who renews trust and faith in God and strengthens against the temptations of the evil one, the temptation to discouragement and anguish in the face of death. 135 This assistance from the Lord by the power of his Spirit is meant to lead the sick person to healing of the soul, but also of the body if such is God’s will. 136 Furthermore, “if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven.” 137 1521 Union with the passion of Christ. By the grace of this sacrament the sick person receives the strength and the gift of uniting himself more closely to Christ’s Passion: in a certain way he is consecrated to bear fruit by configuration to the Savior’s redemptive Passion. Suffer- ing, a consequence of original sin, acquires a newmeaning; it becomes a participation in the saving work of Jesus. 1522 An ecclesial grace. The sick who receive this sacrament, “by freely uniting themselves to the passion and death of Christ,” “contribute to the good of the People of God.” 138 By celebrating this sacrament the Church, in the communion of saints, intercedes for the benefit of the sick person, and he, for his part, though the 133 Jas 5:14. 134 Cf. Jas 5:15. 135 Cf. Heb 2:15. 136 Cf. Council of Florence (1439): DS 1325. 137 Jas 5:15; cf. Council of Trent (1551): DS 1717. 138 LG 11 § 2. 733 1535 1499 953