Question of the Day for Wednesday, June 5, 2013
Confession for Alzheimer’s Patients?
Q. Can you comment on how the Catholic Church administers, or what is the policy for administering, the final blessings (Sacrament of Reconciliation, total absolution of sins) for persons who have Alzheimer’s disease (AD)?
My wife is in her third year of AD. Her last confession and absolution was during the last Easter season. Our priest knows of her condition.
Should we continue to bring her to confession?
Should we wait until she is near death from some other illness or until she dies to call the priest for final absolution? Or am I overly concerned?
W.G., via e-mail
A. Here is a reply from Father Francis Hoffman, J.C.D.:
You are not overly concerned. As a loving and faithful husband, you should do your best to help your wife receive all the graces she can from the sacraments.
As for the proper pastoral care of Alzheimer’s patients, I would encourage you to carry on as normal until your wife can no longer do so: She should continue to attend Sunday Mass, receive holy Communion and confess on a regular basis.
Read the rest of the answer at Our Sunday Visitor: http://www.osv.com/TCANav/TCAQuestionoftheDay/June372013/tabid/8715/Default.aspx