Anointing with oil is an ancient practice that represents refreshing, healing and restoration. It is a physical representation of the Holy Spirit’s indwelling, not just on our bodies, but upon our spirit. When the oil falls on our skin and seeps into our pores, we feel the very hand of God. Anointing with oil is most commonly used in times of preparation. In the Old Testament, kings and priests were anointed with oil. In fact, the word Messiah and its New Testament counterpart Christ, both mean “anointed one.” Today, we anoint babies as a sign of blessing and protection for the new life ahead. We anoint clergy as they begin a new assignment in ministry. And in some traditions, the sick are anointed with oil to make way for the healing of mind, body, and spirit.

Alfred Street Baptist Church has distributed oil as a sign of preparation and renewal. While many of us mourn the life we knew prior to this pandemic, we are also compelled to walk into this new chapter of our lives with enthusiasm and joy. We pray that this sacred gift of oil will represent the beginning of something beautiful. We also invite you to keep in mind the following:

· Oil is most often applied on the forehead, but you’re welcome to apply it in any place of significance.
· We recommend using your thumb and making the sign of a small cross.
· Remember that oil is a symbolic representation and “a little goes a long way.”

As you prayerfully anoint yourself and your loved ones, may you embrace the beauty of our God’s transcendence. May you be assured that God is transcending the circumstances of your pain, grief, loneliness, sickness, and disappointment. May you know that the same spirit that anoints you is connecting our whole church family in Christian love. Most of all, may you find peace as drops of refreshing fall down on your soul.