do Protestants object to annointing of the sick too?

Just curious… . .

Depends on the individual Protestant, or the denomination they are in, probably…

"*Protestant Churches have either revived the practice of anointing the sick in the past century or have always offered the rite since the Protestant Reformation with varying degrees of frequency and a wide variety of liturgical formats.

Liturgical or Mainline Protestant churches (e.g. Presbyterian, Congregationalist/United Church of Christ, Methodist, Lutheran, etc.) all have official yet often optional liturgical rites for the anointing of the sick which are modeled in part on traditional pre-Reformation rites. Anointing need not be associated with grave illness or imminent danger of death as is the usual custom in the Roman Catholic Church. In this, Protestant churches are similar in practice to the Eastern Orthodox churches since one need not be near death or even physically sick to receive anointing. While most Protestant churches have no formal set of Last Rites, all offer Communion to the sick, confession or some form of assurance of pardon for sins, and anointing or laying on of hands or both to persons gravely ill. The frequency of the practice of anointing of the sick varies greatly among Protestant congregations - some local churches may practice anointing frequently and include it in the Sunday service weekly or monthly, while others may offer it rarely or never - though if a congregant requested it, it is more than likely a minister would agree to perform the rite. Most Protestant churches allow laypersons to administer these rites, but the usual officiant would be an ordained minister. Laying on of hands for the sick without anointing is also common in mainline Protestant churches. In all cases, whether the rite includes anointing, laying on of hands or both, the recipient need not be physically ill. Many churches offer this ritual for the healing of body, mind or spirit to anyone wishing to receive it. There is no limit on how often the rite can be administered. While confession of sins may accompany the rite (usually as a general confession and absolution), it is not required.

Protestant churches vary widely on the sacramental character of anointing. Evangelical churches generally use the term ordinance rather than sacrament. Mainline Protestants have two sacraments (the Lord’s Supper and Baptism) with anointing being deemed one of the rites of the church. Some members of the Anglican/Episcopalian churches consider it a sacrament since they recognize the same seven sacraments of Roman Catholicism and Eastern Orthodoxy. Generally, Protestants only deem rites established by Jesus Christ himself to be sacraments. However, all accept that anointing of the sick is an “outward and visible sign of an inward and spiritual grace” which is the definition of a sacrament. Hence, most would accept that anointing has a sacramental character and is therefore a channel of God’s grace.

In all Charismatic and Pentecostal churches, anointing of the sick is a frequent practice and it has been an important ritual in these churches since their respective movements were founded in the 19th and 20th centuries. These churches use a non-liturgical form for its administration drawing direct inspiration from the James passage quoted above. The officiant need not be an ordained pastor. There is minimal ceremony attached to its administration, but the act can be a highly emotional and powerful experience. It is the usual practice that several people will physically touch the recipient (laying on of hands) during the anointing. It is almost always practiced as part of a worship service with the full assembly of the church present. Most Pentecostal Christians believe that physical healing is within the atonement and so there is often great expectation or at least great hope that a miraculous cure or improvement will occur when someone is being prayed over for healing.

In Evangelical and Fundamentalist Christian churches, anointing of the sick is performed with varying degrees of frequency, although laying on of hands may be more common than anointing. The ritual would be similar to that of Charismatic and Pentecostal churches in its simplicity, but would usually not have the same emotionalism attached to it. Unlike Pentecostals, Evangelicals and Fundamentalists generally do not believe that physical healing is within the atonement. Therefore, God may or may not grant physical healing to the sick. The healing conferred by anointing is thus a spiritual event that may not result in physical recovery.*"

Every church I ever attended anoints the sick. No Objections.

Thanks for your thorough reply.

The above is not the case in the Catholic Church either.

Strange thing… Growing up, I attended an Assemblies of God church. They anointed their house in the name of Jesus, they anointed loved ones. It was common. Then, one day I mentioned something on a non-Catholic Christian forum about anointing my home with holy oil, and how I also had holy oil for times of sickness. I didn’t think anything of it, but when people in the forum realized I was Catholic, they became very superior with me, saying, “Well I don’t need to anoint my home with holy oil, because I trust in the Lord!”

Some do anoint (homes and the sick). Some do not. I don’t know what their rule is … depends, I suppose :confused:.

I have an AoG relative who strongly believes in annointing of the sick. She was very offended to find out that Catholics and Orthodox also do it, and she distinguished that hers was a homeopathic/health issue and not a spiritual one. Her explanation, other than the title, was exactly the same, though. :rolleyes:

When my grandmother was dying, the clergy at our church (I was Protestant at the time) didn’t think it was necessary to visit her, since she was unconscious. We did eventually convince them to come, but they didn’t stay very long, and there was no anointing.

I have heard stories of Protestant family members, in desperation, contacting Catholic priests to come and visit their dying relatives, because their own clergy couldn’t be bothered to come.

When my dad was close to death, I was able to find a priest on short notice at 10:00pm. I had never given anointing of the sick any thought whatsoever until then. The priest came in, he anointed my unconcious dad and we all prayed together. He said my dad was “ready to go home now”.

Within a few hours he passed.

As I look back, the anointing was such a comfort.

From James chapter 5-
13 Is anyone among you suffering? He should pray. Is anyone in good spirits? He should sing praise.
14 Is anyone among you sick? 6 He should summon the presbyters of the church, and they should pray over him and anoint (him) with oil in the name of the Lord,
15 and the prayer of faith will save the sick person, and the Lord will raise him up. If he has committed any sins, he will be forgiven. 7
16 Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The fervent prayer of a righteous person is very powerful.

How do non-Catholics interpret the above?

Such stories always mke me sad. Unfortuneately, they are not specific to any Christian group. I used to work at a nursing home and often Priests refused to come for patients because “they are not active members of the parish” or “the nursing home is not in the parish boundaries.” :mad:

Well, speaking for the Presbyterian Church I’ve been most recently involved with

  • the sick are anointed (with olive oil), usually with laying on of hands and prayer. Having been ill, and anointed in this way by the leadership of my church gathered round me, it was an incredibly beautiful moment - and somehow felt like a real living out of this passage of scripture.
  • we confessed our sins to one another. Many of us were in groups of two or three who gathered weekly to pray together and confess our areas of weakness. It wasn’t easy, but it was incredibly helpful in terms of growth.

southern baptist do annoint the sick

Thanks for the beautiful story.

The text from James can be taken a couple of ways.

Does your Church believe that the person who is sick must call the church leadership?

If a person is unconcious and someone else calls the church leadership, are his sins still forgiven?

I’m not quite sure of the brass tacks of Catholic teaching concerning anointing of the sick either.

My Protestant church does not object to annointing of the sick. As a matter of fact we have an alter call dedicated to just that, every sunday.

My Dad and Step-mother annointed my KJV bible in hopes that God’s Spirit within would convert me back to Protestantism…hmmmmm…the annointing did not take…:wink:

The difference that I have seen, in comparison to my church, is that we annoint whoever, whenever, no questions asked. I have numerous times been annointed for a simple head cold, depression, etc, none of it revealed to my Priest. He just simply annointed me, prayed with me…a very wonderful experience and it works!

Funny thing though…I went up for annointing, just not feeling well. My Priest asked me, “are you pregnant”, :eek: eye bulging, I said “NO!” (My youngest was only three months old!)…about three weeks later, I went up for annointing, I looked at my Priest and said “Ask me again” :eek: His eyes bulged this time! Yes, I was pregnant. He hugged me we prayed and I just said to him “Just pray that I don’t loose my child”…I didn’t and my lovely #3 is here!!!

Is this a recognised practice?

that God’s Spirit within would convert me back to Protestantism

any denom in particular? or just anything but Catholic.

Usually when people are sick they either go to the church leadership for annointing and laying on of hands or they call the church and ask to be placed in the prayer list or for someone to come to their home. While it’s available and encouraged I know of no penalty for failing to do it (other than not being healed, as often happens when annointed!)

Protestants are generally more individual then this. I would be surprised (but not shocked or offended) if church leadership annointed an unconcious person and declared that the persons sins were forgiven. I might ask for details of why they declared it, If I felt it was any of my business.

When I was pregnant with my last baby I was annointed in a Catholic church for my baby’s healing. My baby died 47 minutes after birth…hmmmmm…the annointing did not take…:wink: You can’t judge wether the annointing happens or not based on wether or not you get what the annointing is for, because if it is not God’s will it is not God’s will. You can’t change God’s will.

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