Why the person has to reach the age of reason to be annointed?


#1

One of the requirements to receive the Annointing of the Sick is that the person has to reach the age of reason (I;m guessing 5 or 6 years old?). Why? I think if Jesus, 2000 years ago, passed trough a village and someone came to him asking to cure some infant or toddler under 5 years old I think He wouldn’t deny such sacrament.


#2

Simply put, because they don’t need it. The anointing of the sick is primarily a spiritual sacrament, not a physical one. Those below the age of reason don’t really need to be forgiven all their sins and soul cleansed, because they haven’t committed any actual sin.


#3

We are born with original sin on our souls which is forgiven at Baptism! Now if my child were sick I would call the elders of the Church to lay hands on her, and pray for healing! It does work. My Mother has led the healing ministry in our Church for decades. :slight_smile: I grew up seeing many miracles, and believed this was normal & common. It’s amazing what happens when you truely expect a miracle!


#4

A friend’s father received Extreme Unction when he was about three years old and nearly died back in the Fifties. Age of reason is not an absolute requirement, and the sacrament likely will not be denied if it can be reasonably offered.


#5

=fabio rocha;10264210]One of the requirements to receive the Annointing of the Sick is that the person has to reach the age of reason (I;m guessing 5 or 6 years old?). Why? I think if Jesus, 2000 years ago, passed trough a village and someone came to him asking to cure some infant or toddler under 5 years old I think He wouldn’t deny such sacrament.

At least two very good reasons come to mind:

Under the “age of reason one cannot sin” and one of the effects of the Last rite is sin forgiveness and in and does baptism.

Secondly Canon 1006 mandates that it be knowingly requested by the “sick person”

I’m NOT positive but it seem higly likely that the Church does have some special prayers and powers for those under the Age of reason.


#6

Well, for one, aren’t they supposed to be confirmed if they are in danger of death and are not already confirmed?


#7

Very interesting thread. My daughter was anointed several times from 15 months to 2 and a half. The priests who did it seemed to have no qualms with it and there were other children who received it as well.

Not only that but in extreme cases and extreme handicaps does the Church use the same criteria to withhold the sacrament? Or any sacrament for that matter?


#8

I notice the OP describe themselves as "Roman Catholic"

That is the rite I am in also. BUT
There are other rites within the Catholic Church that I believe offer all the sacraments except matrimony and holy orders to every baptized Catholic. Infants included. So my guess would be that the reason someone has to reach the age of reason is because that is the rule for the rite you are in. We can guess about the theological reasons for this but some of those reasons would be negated by the inclusion by some Catholic rites of infant sacramental admission.


#9

For the Latin norms:“Sick children may be anointed if they have sufficient use of reason to be strengthened by this Sacrament.” 8

In cases of doubt “as to whether the sick person has reached the use of reason, or is dangerously ill, or is dead, the Sacrament is to be administered” in accordance with the traditional norms of sacramental theology. 9 This also applies to young children.

8 (R-I),(PCS), (Gen. Intro.), no. 12, p. 781.
9 Cf. CIC 1005.
archdioceseofhartford.org/ministries/sacramentalguidelines.pdf
CIC Can. 1005 This sacrament is to be administered in a case of doubt whether the sick person has attained the use of reason, is dangerously ill, or is dead.
The eastern Catholic norms do not specify the use of reason limitation.CCEO Can. 738. The Christian faithful are to receive the anointing of the sick gladly whenever they are gravely ill; pastors of souls and the relatives of the sick are to see to it that the sick find relief in this sacrament at an appropriate time.


#10

=superamazingman;10264768]Well, for one, aren’t they supposed to be confirmed if they are in danger of death and are not already confirmed?

No,:slight_smile:

Confirmation is one of the Sacraments of initiation along with Baptism; Confession and the Eucharist. 3 of the 4 require age of reason.

Baptism is what your thinking of in the role implied.

God Bless,
pat/PJM


#11

No. If one is already baptized then confirmation can also be given in danger of death:

Can. 891 The sacrament of confirmation is to be conferred on the faithful at about the age of discretion unless the conference of bishops has determined another age, or there is danger of death, or in the judgment of the minister a grave cause suggests otherwise.


#12

Confession is not a sacrament of initiation, it is a sacrament of reconciliation. The age of reason is not required for Holy Communion and Confirmation by the nature of the sacrament, but currently by the laws of the church in the Latin Rite… The laws of the church have exceptions, and in the danger of death or another good reason, the sacrament of Confirmation can be given to those younger than the age of reason.


#13

I see many focusing on forgiveness. That is not the primary effect of, nor reason for anointing.

The effects are stengthening, peace and courage. It is for uniting the sick person’s suffering with the passion of Christ for the redemption of the entire Body of Christ and grace for the whole Church.

Anointing also completes what Baptism began - conforming us to the death and ressurection of Christ. Baptism anoints us into the life of Christ. Confirmation anoints us into the strength of Christ. Anointing of the Sick anoints us into the death and ressurecation of Christ. They each part of a unified whole which is part of the Christian life.

This is all covered in the Catechism. Reference vatican.va/archive/ccc_css/archive/catechism/p2s2c2a5.htm.

Forgiveness of sins is only part of it. It’s not about sin as much as it is about conforming one’s life to Christ’s life. We all need forgiveness, yes, but that’s not all of what Confirmation and Anointing of the sick is about. It’s about partaking in the divine nature (cf 2 Peter 1)

Heck, confession isn’t even primarily about forgiveness. Confession is a sacrament of healing. If you look in the catechism, there are two categories of sacraments; sacraments of initiation and sacraments of healing. God wants to heal you of your sins so that you don’t do them any more, not just forgive you and have you come back again and again. The Holy Spirit is the doctor of our souls and Jesus was a healer. God doesn’t want to just forgive us. We all need forgiveness but God wants to heal you, strengthen you, and make you more like Christ.

-Tim-


#14

Reconciliation/confession are in the Catechism under the heading “Sacraments of Healing.”

They reconcile us with God through forgiveness of sins but if all anyone seeks in the confessional is forgiveness then they miss the point. God doesn’t want to just forgive us. God wants to heal us of our sins and make us more like his Son.

That’s why I always say, “…and I ask Jesus Christ for forgivenss and healing of these and any other sins I may have forgotten.” right after I say my sins.

Confession is a profound encouter with Christ the Healer, Jesus the Doctor. You have to show him your wounds, and ask him to heal you, not just to make the pain go away.

-Tim-


#15

A source supporting my notion. “Age of Reason” is loosened to mean any person with sufficient maturity to be comforted by the sacrament.

  1. One who has not reached the age of reason. Those who have not reached the age of reason, or never had its use, may not be anointed. However, a child may not have reached the normal age of First Confession and First Communion, the typical application of the “age of reason” standard, but still may show enough use of the faculty to understand what is taking place and benefit from the sacrament. This could also be the case with a mentally challenged individual. Doubt about whether the person has sufficiently use of reason would be decided in favor of the sick person (c.1005).

www.ewtn.com/expert/answers/anointing_of_the_sick.htm


#16

[quote="PJM, post:10, topic:312040"]
No,:)

Confirmation is one of the Sacraments of initiation along with Baptism; Confession and the Eucharist. 3 of the 4 require age of reason.

Baptism is what your thinking of in the role implied.

God Bless,
pat/PJM

[/quote]

Actually, she's right. Confirmation is to be conferred on anyone who is in danger of dying if they've not been confirmed. In the same way, infants who receive an emergency baptism should be confirmed at the same time. Communion requires the age of reason - not Confirmation. The age of reason for Communion is a discipline in the Latin Rite, not a doctrine.

Confession is not a sacrament of initiation.


#17

=SuscipeMeDomine;10265972]No. If one is already baptized then confirmation can also be given in danger of death:

Can. 891 The sacrament of confirmation is to be conferred on the faithful at about the age of discretion unless the conference of bishops has determined another age, or there is danger of death, or in the judgment of the minister a grave cause suggests otherwise.

THANKS:thumbsup:


#18

=Phemie;10266577]Actually, she’s right. Confirmation is to be conferred on anyone who is in danger of dying if they’ve not been confirmed. In the same way, infants who receive an emergency baptism should be confirmed at the same time. Communion requires the age of reason - not Confirmation. The age of reason for Communion is a discipline in the Latin Rite, not a doctrine.

Confession is not a sacrament of initiation.

The first ponit I agree:) And your right about confession except by necessity it has to be done before receving FIRST Holy Communion: right:)

THANKS,
pat


#19

It’s because theologically, Baptism, Confirmation and Communion can all be conferred at the same time, not requiring Confession.

Only because of the Latin discipline requiring the separation of Communion until age of reason does Confession enter the equation.


#20

Even in the west for the first thousands years of so all three sacraments were conferred on infants as is now the case in the east. There were particular reasons why this was changed.


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