Catechism On Line

Jesus' Work of Healing

Book, Chapter 16  (Faith First)
Book, Chapter 13, 14 (Be My Disciples)

In this chapter we discuss the following topics: 


Sacrament of Reconciliation

Unction - Anointing of the Sick


We all have sinned sometimes, whether consciously or subconsciously, and therefore have a need for God's forgiveness. We know that "sin" is freely choosing to do, or saying what we know is against God's will. There is a problem with this definition however. What is against God's will?


Sin - An act or statement, or failure to act or to make such statement which could cause another fellow human being, or other God's creation undue inconvenience, sorrow, pain or suffering.

In other words; anything we do, or fail to do which could hurt someone else!

The worst possible sins are those which cause harm to someone else consciously, and for our own personal gain in addition to our own pride and arrogance. But there are times we can hurt others without even knowing. Therefore we have a need to ask for God's forgiveness periodically.

Sacrament of Reconciliation

For this purpose, Jesus gave the Church the Sacrament of Reconciliation. Here, God acts through the person of the bishop, or the priest to forgive our sins. It is important to realize that during our confession it is NOT the priest who forgives our sins. He is only the instrument of the Holy Spirit. In reality, it is God Himself who forgives our sins through the authority of the bishop or the priest performing this sacrament.

As we are forgiven, we too are expected to forgive those who sin against us. We must treat others the same way we ask God to treat us.

Celebrating the Sacrament of Reconciliation:

  • Confession of our sins
  • Contrition for our sins
  • Performing penance
  • Absolution of our sins by the priest (bishop)

Unction - Anointing of the Sick

On numerous occasions during his public ministry Jesus healed sick people. In the case of Jesus' ministry, it demonstrated God's powers, but Jesus did not only healed people physically, but also spiritually.

Very often people do not know God, and are not looking for Him. However, once fallen seriously ill, they finally realize the true values in their lives and start turning to God for help. The Church's sacrament of anointing of the sick should facilitate such conversion. Through the union with Jesus the sick person finds strength, peace and courage.

Only the priest or bishop may administer the sacrament of anointing of the sick. It consists of:

  • The litany, or Prayer of Faith.
  • Laying on of hands
  • Anointing with oils

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