Visitation of the Sick
A rite of prayers for healing that may be used by any lay person or minister visiting the sick.
[This material is copied and adapted from a small pocket manual published in 1930 and used by a priest for various services. Lay people can adapt the following for their own use. The directions are in red, as they are in the original. (This older text is presented here to avoid copyright problems.)]
According to the time and condition of the sick person, the following prayers may be said in whole or in part, or altogether omitted, as the Priest [or lay minister] sees fit.
The Priest, entering the room in which the sick person lies, first says:
PEACE be unto this house (or hospital or room, etc.).
[Response] And to all who dwell here.
[When the sick person does not make the response the lay minister says it.]
Then he SPRINKLES the SICK PERSON and the BED and the ROOM with HOLY WATER, saying:
You shall sprinkle me, O Lord, with hyssop, and I shall be cleansed:
You shall wash me, and I shall be made whiter than snow.
Have mercy upon me, O God, according to your great mercy.
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit
As it was in the beginning, is now, and
ever shall be, world without end. Amen.
A priest would then minister to the sick person as circumstances require, giving the sacraments, and talking with the person to give counsel and encouragement. Before leaving the room, he, or the lay person, may say over the sick person:
Psalm 91
Ps. 91:1 You who live in the shelter of the Most High,
who abide in the shadow of the Almighty,
Ps. 91:2 will say to the LORD, "My refuge and my fortress;
my God, in whom I trust."
Ps. 91:3 For he will deliver you from the snare of the fowler
and from the deadly pestilence;
Ps. 91:4 he will cover you with his pinions,
and under his wings you will find refuge;
his faithfulness is a shield and buckler.
Ps. 91:5 You will not fear the terror of the night,
or the arrow that flies by day,
Ps. 91:6 or the pestilence that stalks in darkness,
or the destruction that wastes at noonday.
Ps. 91:7 A thousand may fall at your side,
ten thousand at your right hand,
but it will not come near you.
Ps. 91:8 You will only look with your eyes
and see the punishment of the wicked.
Ps. 91:9 Because you have made the LORD your refuge,
the Most High your dwelling place,
Ps. 91:10 no evil shall befall you,
no scourge come near your tent.
Ps. 91:11 For he will command his angels concerning you
to guard you in all your ways.
Ps. 91:12 On their hands they will bear you up,
so that you will not dash your foot against a stone.
Ps. 91:13 You will tread on the lion and the adder,
the young lion and the serpent you will trample under foot.
Ps. 91:14 Those who love me, I will deliver;
I will protect those who know my name.
Ps. 91:15 When they call to me, I will answer them;
I will be with them in trouble,
I will rescue them and honor them.
Ps. 91:16 With long life I will satisfy them,
and show them my salvation. NRSV
He then says:
LORD have mercy on us.
[Response] Christ have mercy have mercy on us.
Our Father...
[Verse] And lead us not into temptation.
[Response] But deliver us from evil.
V. Save your servant.
R. O my God, who putts his (her) trust in you.
V. Send him (her) help, 0 Lord, from your holy place.
R. And defend him (her) out of Zion.
V. Let not the enemy prevail against him (her)
R. Nor the son of iniquity draw nigh to hurt him (her)
V. Be unto him(her), O Lord, a tower of strength.
R. From the face of the enemy.
V. The Lord bring strength unto him (her).
R. Upon his (her) bed of pain.
V. O Lord, hear my prayer.
R. And let my cry come unto you.
V. The Lord be with you.
R. And with your spirit.
Let us pray.
O GOD, whose property is always to have mercy and to spare: graciously receive our supplication, that we, and this your servant, who are bound with the chain of our sins, may by the compassion of your loving kindness be graciously absolved.
O God, the one only help for human infirmity, show forth upon your sick servant the power of your aid, that, by the assistance of your loving kindness, he (she) may be found worthy to be restored in health unto your Holy Church.
Grant, O Lord God, we beseech you, that this, your servant may enjoy continual health of body and soul; and, through the glorious intercession of Blessed Mary, ever Virgin, be freed from his (her ) present sorrow and enjoy eternal gladness. Through Christ our Lord.
R. Amen.
[If time permits and the sick person so desires
Psalm 6 followed by the Glory Be to the Father may also be recited, then Matt. 8.
Conclude with the following:]
Let us pray.
ALMIGHTY and Eternal God, the everlasting help of those who believe: hear us for your sick servant N. , for whom we implore the aid of your tender mercy, that, being restored to bodily health, he ( she) may give thanks to you in your Church. Through Christ our Lord.
R. Amen.
[Remember James 5:13-16.]
At the end of the prayer the priest lays his right hand on the head of the sick person [Mark 16:18], and says:
[According to scripture,] they shall lay their hands upon the sick, and they shall recover. May Jesus, the Son of Mary, the Lord and Savior of the world through the merits and intercession of His holy Apostles Peter and Paul and all His Saints, show you favor and mercy. [May He grant you healing to body and soul.] Amen.
[May] the blessing of God Almighty the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Ghost descend upon us and remain with us always. (A lay person would make the sign of the cross on himself.)
R. Amen.

Compiled by Rev. Paul Griffith, The Priest's New Ritual, John Murphy Co. 1930. Imprimatur 11/1/1926. Copyright 1927. This material is used for religious and educational purposes only. No other use is intended or permitted.
Some editing has been done to remove archaic words and to adapt the rite to current lay use. The imprimatur would only apply to the unedited original.
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