True or False?: The sacrament of Extreme Unction, or Anointing of the Sick, may be given more than once during the same illness.I'm finished with the "Prayer" section of the USCCB's quiz on the Catechism, and so now it's time to get into the Sacraments. Anointing of the Sick is probably the sacrament that people know the least about, so it will be interesting to see what the results are for this poll. To vote, see the poll in my sidebar.
For information on the Anointing of the Sick, see the Catholic Defense Directory: Anointing of the Sick.
That said, here are the results from last week's poll:
- True or False?: Prayer is a battle against ourselves.
- True: 10 (59%)
- False: 7 (41%)
- True. cf. CCC, para. 2725: Prayer is both a gift of grace and a determined response on our part. It always presupposes effort. The great figures of prayer of the Old Covenant before Christ, as well as the Mother of God, the saints, and he himself, all teach us this: prayer is a battle. Against whom? Against ourselves and against the wiles of the tempter who does all he can to turn man away from prayer, away from union with God. We pray as we live, because we live as we pray. If we do not want to act habitually according to the Spirit of Christ, neither can we pray habitually in his name. The "spiritual battle" of the Christian's new life is inseparable from the battle of prayer.
I often have to battle myself when I pray. I have to fight against my own insecurities about my ability to pray, the thoughts and songs (yes, songs!) in my mind that disctract me from prayer, my general anxiety level (which is usually high), and how I'm feeling physically (my back hurts, my neck is tense, I'm tired, etc.). It's a tough thing simply trying to overcome myself, let alone the devil and whatever tricks he may try to play to keep me from communion with God.
But, I can't give up and you can't either. "Rejoice in your hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer" (Rom 12:12). The reward for patient endurance is the crown of life (cf. Jas 1:12).