Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Looking ahead

When a person is spiritually
healed, this can help to
return the body to a healthy
balance, reduce stress
and bring about healing. (Credit:
robertschram.com)
In the sacrament of the anointing of the sick, do people actually get healed?

By Father Perry D. Leiker

There are different types of healing. Doctors tell us that much of sickness is psychosomatic; that is, in some way the mind (psyche) informs the body that it is not well and creates the illness or at least the symptoms of illness. The mind is very strong and powerful. In the best of spiritual traditions it has always been important to keep a healthy balance between body, mind, and spirit. Any imbalance can causes stress, or more correctly, disstress.

When a person is spiritually healed, this can help to return the body to a healthy balance, reduce stress and bring about healing. There are accounts of miraculous healing, but these are admittedly rare. Even if a person’s health continues to decline and they progress toward natural death, there can be profound healing that prepares a person for death — a "faith-filled" death experience. In these cases, one can feel that God is profoundly present in the struggle, in the suffering, in the dying.

God’s healing presence in illness can be profoundly encouraging and heal a person of doubt, fear, despair, and fill them with hope. It is always better to give a person who is ill a chance to experience this healing early in the illness. It is not extreme unction, and waiting is not advised. Through the anointing with oil we prayerfully celebrate an anointing with God’s Spirit — and this is always a healing event!

Father Perry D. Leiker is St. Bernard parish administrator. Reach him at (323) 255-6142, Ext. 112.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Comments that are derogatory, attack others or are offensive in nature may be removed. We reserve the right to remove any offensive or off-topic remark.