Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Youcat commented through CCC – Question n. 248.



YOUCAT Question n. 248 - What are the names of the sacraments that serve to build up communion in the Church?


(Youcat answer) Someone who is baptized and confirmed can receive moreover a special mission in the Church in two special sacraments and thus be enlisted in the service of God: Holy Orders and Matrimony.

A deepening through CCC

(CCC 1533) Baptism, Confirmation, and Eucharist are sacraments of Christian initiation. They ground the common vocation of all Christ's disciples, a vocation to holiness and to the mission of evangelizing the world. They confer the graces needed for the life according to the Spirit during this life as pilgrims on the march towards the homeland. (CCC 1534) Two other sacraments, Holy Orders and Matrimony, are directed towards the salvation of others; if they contribute as well to personal salvation, it is through service to others that they do so. They confer a particular mission in the Church and serve to build up the People of God.

Reflecting and meditating 

(Youcat comment) The two Sacraments have something in common: They are directed to the good of others. No one is ordained just for himself, and no one enters the married state merely for his own sake. The sacrament of Holy Orders and the sacrament of Matrimony are supposed to build up the People of God; in other words, they are a channel through which God pours out love into the world.

(CCC Comment)

(CCC 1535) Through these sacraments those already consecrated by Baptism and Confirmation (Cf. LG 10) for the common priesthood of all the faithful can receive particular consecrations. Those who receive the sacrament of Holy Orders are consecrated in Christ's name "to feed the Church by the word and grace of God" (LG 11 § 2).  On their part, "Christian spouses are fortified and, as it were, consecrated for the duties and dignity of their state by a special sacrament" (GS 48 § 2).

(The next question is: What happens in Holy Orders?)

Monday, February 20, 2017

Youcat commented through CCC – Question n. 247.



YOUCAT Question n. 247 - What is meant by “Viaticum”?



(Youcat answer) Viaticum means the last Holy Communion that a person receives before dying.

A deepening through CCC

(CCC 1524) In addition to the Anointing of the Sick, the Church offers those who are about to leave this life the Eucharist as viaticum. Communion in the body and blood of Christ, received at this moment of "passing over" to the Father, has a particular significance and importance. It is the seed of eternal life and the power of resurrection, according to the words of the Lord: "He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day" (Jn 6:54). The sacrament of Christ once dead and now risen, the Eucharist is here the sacrament of passing over from death to life, from this world to the Father (Cf. Jn 13:1). 1524

Reflecting and meditating 

(Youcat comment) Rarely is Communion so vitally necessary as in the moment when a person sets out on the path that completes his earthly life: In the future he will have only as much life as he has in union (= communion) with God.

(CCC Comment)

(CCC 1525) Thus, just as the sacraments of Baptism, Confirmation, and the Eucharist form a unity called "the sacraments of Christian initiation," so too it can be said that Penance, the Anointing of the Sick and the Eucharist as viaticum constitute at the end of Christian life "the sacraments that prepare for our heavenly homeland" or the sacraments that complete the earthly pilgrimage. 

(The next question is: What are the names of the sacraments that serve to build up communion in the Church?)

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Youcat commented through CCC – Question n. 246.


YOUCAT Question n. 246 - Who can administer the Anointing of the Sick?


(Youcat answer) Administering the Anointing of the Sick is reserved to bishops and priests, for it is Christ who acts through them by virtue of their ordination.

A deepening through CCC

(CCC 1516) Only priests (bishops and presbyters) are ministers of the Anointing of the Sick (Cf. Council of Trent (1551): DS 1697; 1719; CIC, Can. 1003; CCEO, Can. 739 § 1). It is the duty of pastors to instruct the faithful on the benefits of this sacrament. The faithful should encourage the sick to call for a priest to receive this sacrament. The sick should prepare themselves to receive it with good dispositions, assisted by their pastor and the whole ecclesial community, which is invited to surround the sick in a special way through their prayers and fraternal attention.

Reflecting and meditating 

(CCC Comment)

(CCC 1531) The celebration of the Anointing of the Sick consists essentially in the anointing of the forehead and hands of the sick person (in the Roman Rite) or of other parts of the body (in the Eastern rite), the anointing being accompanied by the liturgical prayer of the celebrant asking for the special grace of this sacrament. (CCC 1532) The special grace of the sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick has as its effects: - the uniting of the sick person to the passion of Christ, for his own good and that of the whole Church; - the strengthening, peace, and courage to endure in a Christian manner the sufferings of illness or old age; - the forgiveness of sins, if the sick person was not able to obtain it through the sacrament of Penance; - the restoration of health, if it is conducive to the salvation of his soul; - the preparation for passing over to eternal life.

(The next question is: What is meant by “Viaticum”?)


Saturday, February 18, 2017

Youcat commented through CCC – Question n. 245 - Part IV.



YOUCAT Question n. 245 - Part IV. How does the Anointing of the Sick work?


(Youcat answer – repeated) The Anointing of the Sick imparts consolation, peace, and strength and unites the sick person, in his precarious situation and his sufferings, with Christ in a profound way. For the Lord experienced our fears and bore our pains in his body. For many people the Anointing of the Sick brings about physical healing. But if God should decide to call someone home to himself, he gives him in the Anointing of the Sick the strength for all the physical and spiritual battles on his final journey. In any case, the Anointing of the Sick has the effect of forgiving sins.

A deepening through CCC

(CCC 1500) Illness and suffering have always been among the gravest problems confronted in human life. In illness, man experiences his powerlessness, his limitations, and his finitude. Every illness can make us glimpse death. 1500

Reflecting and meditating 

(Youcat comment) Many sick people are afraid of this sacrament and put it off until the last minute because they think it is a sort of death sentence. But the opposite is true: the Anointing of the Sick is a sort of life insurance. A Christian who is caring for a sick person should relieve him of any false fear. Most people in serious danger sense intuitively that nothing is more important for them at the moment than to embrace immediately and unconditionally the One who overcame death and is life itself: Jesus, the Savior.

(CCC Comment)

(CCC 1532) The special grace of the sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick has as its effects: - the uniting of the sick person to the passion of Christ, for his own good and that of the whole Church; - the strengthening, peace, and courage to endure in a Christian manner the sufferings of illness or old age; - the forgiveness of sins, if the sick person was not able to obtain it through the sacrament of Penance; - the restoration of health, if it is conducive to the salvation of his soul; - the preparation for passing over to eternal life.     

(The next question is: Who can administer the Anointing of the Sick?)