Decree for Plenary Indulgence for the Year of St. Paul

As you know, this year will be dedicated to St. Paul the Apostle.

Below, find the decree in Latin from the Sacra Penitenzieria Apostolica for the plenary indulgence that can be gained.

Here is the story from VIS.

VATICAN CITY, 10 MAY 2008 (VIS) – According to a decree made public today and signed by Cardinal James Francis Stafford and Bishop Gianfranco Girotti, O.F.M. Conv., respectively penitentiary major and regent of the Apostolic Penitentiary, Benedict XVI will grant the faithful Plenary Indulgence for the occasion of the two-thousandth anniversary of the birth of the Apostle Paul. The Plenary Indulgence will be valid throughout the Pauline Year which is due to run from 28 June 2008 to 29 June 2009.

"With the imminence of the liturgical Solemnity of the Prince of the Apostles", says the decree, "the Supreme Pontiff … wishes, in good time, to provide for the faithful with spiritual treasures for their own sanctification, that they may renew and reinforce … their purpose of supernatural salvation from the moment of the First Vespers of the aforementioned Solemnity, principally in honour of the Apostle of the Gentiles the two-thousandth anniversary of whose earthly birth is now approaching.

"In fact, the gift of indulgences which the Roman Pontiff offers the Universal Church, facilitates the way to interior purification which, while rendering honour to the Blessed Apostle Paul, exalts supernatural life in the hearts of the faithful and spurs them on … to produce fruits of good works".

The means to obtain the Plenary Indulgence are as follows:

"All Christian faithful – truly repentant, duly purified by the Sacrament of Penance and restored with Holy Communion – who undertake a pious visit in the form of a pilgrimage to the papal basilica of St. Paul on Rome’s Via Ostiense and pray in accordance with the intentions of the Supreme Pontiff, are granted and imparted Plenary Indulgence for the temporal punishment of their sins, once they have obtained sacramental remission and forgiveness for their shortcomings.

"Plenary Indulgence may be gained by the Christian faithful, either for themselves or for the deceased, as many times as the aforementioned acts are undertaken; it remains the case, however, that Plenary Indulgence may be obtained only once a day.

"In order that the prayers pronounced on these holy visits may lead and draw the souls of the faithful to a more intense veneration of the memory of St. Paul, the following conditions are laid down: the faithful, apart from pronouncing their own prayers before the altar of the Blessed Sacrament, … must go to the altar of the Confession and pray the ‘Our Father’ and the ‘Creed’, adding pious invocations in honour of the Blessed Virgin Mary and St. Paul; and such acts of devotion must remain closely linked to the memory of the Prince of the Apostles St. Peter".

"Christian faithful from the various local Churches, under the usual conditions (sacramental Confession, Eucharistic communion, prayer in keeping with the intentions of the Supreme Pontiff) and completely unattached to any form of sin, may still obtain the Plenary Indulgence if they participate devotedly in a religious function or in a pious exercise held publicly in honour of the Apostle of the Gentiles: on the days of the solemn opening and closing of the Pauline Year in any place of worship; on other days determined by the local ordinary, in holy places named for St. Paul and, for the good of the faithful, in other places designated by the ordinary".  [May bishops everywhere, please God, take note!]

The document concludes by recalling how the faithful who, "through sickness or other legitimate or important reason", are unable to leave their homes, may still obtain the Plenary Indulgence if, with the soul completely removed from attachment to any form of sin and with the intention of observing, as soon as they can, the usual three conditions, "spiritually unite themselves to a Jubilee celebration in honour of St. Paul, offering their prayers and suffering to God for the unity of Christians".

URBIS ET ORBIS
D E C R E T U M

 Saeculo XX expleto postquam Sanctus Apostolus Paulus in terris ortus est,
speciales conceduntur Indulgentiae.

Cum instet sollemnitas liturgica Principum Apostolorum, Summus Pontifex, pastorali impulsus sollicitudine, in animo habet tempestive decernere de spiritalibus aperiendis thesauris pro sanctificatione fidelium, ita ut ipsi salutaria proposita semper quidem concipienda, vel maxime hac pia et felici occasione innovent et roborent, in actum ferventissime deducenda inde a primis vesperis memoratae sollemnitatis, praesertim in honorem Apostoli Gentium, a cuius ortu in terris bismillesimus anniversarius dies nunc propinquat.

Sane vero, Indulgentiarum donum, quod Romanus Pontifex universae Ecclesiae praebet, optimae interiori purificationi summo gradu attingendae viam sternit, quae scilicet Beato Paulo Apostolo honorem defert et supernaturalem vitam in cordibus fidelium exaltat et ad fructus bonorum operum gignendos suaviter impellit.

Itaque haec Apostolica Paenitentiaria, cui Beatissimus Pater commisit ut Decretum de Indulgentiis totum per spatium Anni Paulini largiendis et acquirendis praeparet atque redigat, per praesens iuxta ipsius Augusti Pontificis mentem editum, gratias, quae in sequentibus significantur, benigne dilargitur:

 

I.- Omnibus et singulis christifidelibus vere paenitentibus, qui, rite per Sacramentum Paenitentiae expiati et Sacra Synaxi refecti,papalem Sancti Pauli Basilicam ad viam Ostiensem in forma peregrinationis pie inviserint et ad mentem Summi Pontificis oraverint, plenaria temporalis poenae, pro peccatis luendae, Indulgentia, misericorditer in Domino conceditur atque impertitur, obtenta prius ab iisdem admissorum cuiusque suorum sacramentali remissione ac venia.

Plenaria haec Indulgentia a christifidelibus cum sibi, tum aliis fidelibus vita functis toties lucri fieri poterit, quoties imperata opera rite perficiantur, norma autem illa usque vigente, qua semel dumtaxat in die consequi licet Indulgentiam plenariam.

Ut vero quae in sacris hisce visitationibus effundentur preces ad Sancti Pauli memoriam recolendam fidelium animos studiosius referant atque excitent, haec, quae sequuntur, statuuntur atque iubentur: praeter eas supplicationes, quae ultro pro singulorum pietate ante SS.mi Sacramenti aram ad Deum admovebuntur, ad Confessionis aram recitari debent Oratio Dominica atque Symbolum Apostolorum, additis piis invocationibus in honorem Beatae Mariae Virginis atque Sancti Pauli. Quae quidem animi devotio sibi semper conexam habeat memoriam Principis Apostolorum Sancti Petri.

 

II.- Christifideles variarum Ecclesiarum localium, suetis condicionibus (sacramentali Confessione, eucharistica Commu-nione et oratione ad mentem Summi Pontificis) rite adimpletis, omnino excluso affectu erga quodcumque peccatum, plenariam lucrari valebunt Indulgentiam, si sacrae functioni vel pio exercitio in honorem Apostoli Gentium publice peractis devote interfuerint: diebus, quibus Annus Paulinus sollemniter aperietur et claudetur, in omnibus sacris aedibus; aliis diebus a loci Ordinario determinandis, in sacris aedibus sub titulo Sancti Pauli et, pro utilitate fidelium, in aliis ab ipso Ordinario designandis.

 

 III.- Denique fideles, morbo vel alia legitima et notabili causa impediti, pariter plenariam consequi poterunt Indulgentiam, semper elongato animo a quocumque peccato et concepto proposito suetas condiciones, cum primum eis possibile erit, adimplendi, dummodo iubilari celebrationi in honorem Sancti Pauli peractae se spiritaliter adiunxerint, preces suas suosque dolores misericordi Deo offerentes pro Christianorum unitate.

Quo autem facilius christifideles caelestium horum munerum participes fieri queant, sacerdotes, competenti ecclesiastica auctoritate ad confessiones audiendas adprobati, prompto et generoso animo sese praebeant ad ipsas excipiendas.

Praesenti per Annum Paulinum tantum valituro. In contrarium facientibus non obstantibus quibuscumque.

Datum Romae, ex aedibus Paenitentiariae Apostolicae, die X mensis Maii, anno Dominicae Incarnationis MMVIII, in vigilia Dominicae Pentecostes. 

IACOBUS FRANCISCUS S. R. E. Card. STAFFORD
Paenitentiarius Maior

+ Ioannes Franciscus Girotti, O. F. M. Conv.
Ep. Tit. Metensis, Regens

FacebookEmailPinterestGoogle GmailShare/Bookmark

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
This entry was posted in SESSIUNCULA. Bookmark the permalink.

31 Responses to Decree for Plenary Indulgence for the Year of St. Paul

  1. Shane says:

    These sorts of things just don’t have any real meaning to me…. I wish they did, but when I look at the official list of indulgences, you can get a plenary indulgence for virtually anything. An indulgence for traveling all the way to Rome just doesn’t really come across as all that meaningful when you can do some of these thinggs in your own home.

  2. Shane: That’s entirely up to you.

  3. Flambeaux says:

    Oh wow. I continue to be moved by how generously Holy Mother Church extends the Grace of God to us.

    Thank you for commending this to our attention, Fr. Z. I’ll have to pass the word.

  4. Manuel says:

    This is great! I will be visiting my dad’s hometown in Mexico this year. Its name? San Pablo. Hopefully the priests and bishops there will participate.

  5. Agnes says:

    We’ll have to keep an eye out for a pious happening at the Cathedral of St. Paul in St. Paul, MN. Thank you, Lord, and keep those graces coming!

  6. Irenaeus says:

    I’m a Catholic-leaning evangelical Protestant, who would very much like to be Catholic someday when I’ve worked through things, but I cannot wrap my head around indulgences. I don’t even have a problem with Purgatory, per se. I just don’t understand indulgences at all, even having read the catechism and having it explained to me. Anyone?

  7. Michael says:

    “I just don’t understand indulgences at all, even having read the catechism and having it explained to me. Anyone?”

    I found that fisheaters has a good explanation of indulgences, especially when discussing what idulgences are not

    http://www.fisheaters.com/indulgences.html

    Section D of this link, with the analogy of the repentant child who has stolen a candy bar was pretty clear.

  8. Shane says:

    Read the article here: http://pontifications.wordpress.com/purgatory/ Then, ask any questions you may have.

    It really ought to help. It’s the best article I’ve seen on addressing some of the confusions people can have regarding indulgences that aren’t really addressed elsewhere.

  9. Irenaeus says:

    Thanks, guys — I will read them shortly. I appreciate it.

  10. LCB says:

    I never “got” indulgences until I read the Baltimore Catechism.

    In Baltimore Catechism #3 there is a great picture of all the Saints in heaven, and they are around a lake (the lake of their good works). The merit from those good works overflows to us on Earth, and we may partake of it.

    I would highly recommend reading the BC section on indulgences:

    http://www.ourladyswarriors.org/faith/bc3-21.htm

    In the course of my return to the Church, I found sitting in on daily mass made a tremendous impact. Even just sitting in the back, not participating, really helped me come to peace with the faith.

  11. Bill Haley says:

    What exactly does attachment to venial sin mean? I have not found a good explanation of this.

    Does it mean one has been forgiven of all venial sins and therefore not attached, or that one does not have a habitual attachment to a particular venial sin? Or both?

  12. rachel says:

    Te Deum Laudamus! I am happy to hear about this. We need many opportunities for graces and indulgences are a good way to obtain them as well as help our loved ones in purgatory. Whoo hoo! I get to graduate (just did) and get married (will in October) in St. Paul’s year :). We will need it too since as I have said since I became Catholic in 1999 that we need all the help that we can get :)

  13. RBrown says:

    These sorts of things just don’t have any real meaning to me…. I wish they did, but when I look at the official list of indulgences, you can get a plenary indulgence for virtually anything. An indulgence for traveling all the way to Rome just doesn’t really come across as all that meaningful when you can do some of these thinggs in your own home.
    Comment by Shane

    I don’t know about your home, but in mine I’m not able to pray at the tombs of various saints, including a few apostles. And I have no masterpieces by Michelangelo or Caravaggio.

    And then there’s the little matter of food . . .

  14. Liam says:

    1. Attachment refers to an unwillingness to renounce a sin. It’s not referring to a state of weakness, as it were.

    2. A praxis-oriented illustration of the “why” of indulgences for the faithful: for the moment forget about how you can obtain anything for yourself – instead think of what a magnificent participation in Christ’s charity you can undertake for souls in Purgatory! When you are old enough to have enough family and friends pass to the next life, and know and love and want the best for them there, you will be moved to do this. Then you will be moved to do this when a work colleague mentions his mother died after a long illness, et cet. Then you will do it for souls unknown to you. And you will also crave the Sacrament of Reconciliation the more, not just for what it does for you, but for what it may also allow you to undertake for other souls in Purgatory.

  15. Theodorus says:

    “An indulgence for traveling all the way to Rome just doesn’t really come across as all that meaningful when you can do some of these thinggs in your own home.
    ——-Comment by Shane

    I don’t know about your home, but in mine I’m not able to pray at the tombs of various saints, including a few apostles. And I have no masterpieces by Michelangelo or Caravaggio.

    And then there’s the little matter of food . . . –Comment by RBrown ”

    I think Shane is referring to the plenary indulgences such as reading the Bible for at least half hour, using a sacramental blessed by the Pope or any other bishop on Solemnity of Sts. Peter and Paul, Apostles (June 29), and so forth. Since these good works can be done at home, the plenary indulgences attached to them can be obtained perfectly at home by anyone.

  16. Animadversor says:

    Shane: It’s true, some plenary indulgences can be gained with much less physical trouble than, say, a pilgrimage would require. But sometimes we men, whose spirits are by the Divine Wisdom so thoroughly bound up with our fleshliness, must move our bodies, even literally, in order to move our souls. Did not God command us to gather together on the Lord’s Day, not just to think fraternal thoughts? The act of removing oneself physically from one place to another, sacred place can stimulate us spiritually, if done with the right intention.

    Irenaeus: We love you. Separate yourself from us no more.

  17. Kradcliffe says:

    I am not 100% clear on the conditions, here:
    ….may still obtain the Plenary Indulgence if they participate devotedly in a religious function or in a pious exercise held publicly in honour of the Apostle of the Gentiles: on the days of the solemn opening and closing of the Pauline Year in any place of worship; on other days determined by the local ordinary, in holy places named for St. Paul and, for the good of the faithful, in other places designated by the ordinary”.

    Could somebody explain what that means, exactly?

    I do understand what Shane is saying. If I were in Rome, I would definitely go to the Basillica. But, in general, there are certainly easier ways to get a plenary indulgence.

    I’m really not sure what the attachment to venial sin requirement means, either. I took it to mean that it’s almost impossible to achieve. Like, you shouldn’t even feel tempted to do it any longer. And, that includes all those things you didn’t really know were sins/haven’t yet pinged your conscience when doing your examination of conscience. Am I wrong about that?

  18. Liam says:

    KRadcliffe

    That’s a common misperception that has been hard to dislodge. If you’ve deliberately and intentionally withheld confessing a sin, then we are talking about an attachment that involves an unwillingness to renounce a sin. But failing through ignorance or inadvertance to confess a sin is not the same thing – so it’s not something to scruple over in that way. The Church does not commend to the faithful an approach that risks scrupulosity of that sort, since scrupulosity is a spiritual illness, not health.

  19. Theodorus says:

    1. “…may still obtain the Plenary Indulgence if they participate devotedly in a religious function or in a pious exercise held publicly in honour of the Apostle of the Gentiles: on the days of the solemn opening and closing of the Pauline Year in any place of worship;”

    That means on June 28, 2008, and June 29, 2009, in a church, chapel, or any other authorized place of worship, if there is a liturgy or ceremony held in honor of St. Paul, and you participate in it, you can gain a plenary indulgence.

    2.”on other days determined by the local ordinary, in holy places named for St. Paul and, for the good of the faithful, in other places designated by the ordinary”.

    Any day between June 28, 2008 and June 29, 2009, if a bishop decides to have a public ceremony or liturgy held in honor of St. Paul in a church named after St. Paul (such as St. Paul’s Church/Cathedral) or any other holy place chosen by the bishop, and if you participate in the ceremony or liturgy, you can gain a plenary indulgence.

    Of course, besides doing the good works prescribed (like those mentioned above and listed in “Enchiridion Indulgentiarum,” the book of indulgence), any plenary indulgence can only be gained by meeting another 3 requirements: making confession, receiving holy communion, and praying for the intention of the Pope.

  20. Marc says:

    Hey Father, Good things are already starting to happen here in St. Paul, MN!! What a blessing!

    Praise God!

  21. RBrown says:

    I think Shane is referring to the plenary indulgences such as reading the Bible for at least half hour, using a sacramental blessed by the Pope or any other bishop on Solemnity of Sts. Peter and Paul, Apostles (June 29), and so forth. Since these good works can be done at home, the plenary indulgences attached to them can be obtained perfectly at home by anyone.
    Comment by Theodorus

    I know what he was saying. My point is that there’s more to a pilgrimage than a plenary indulgence.

  22. RBrown says:

    Attachment refers to an unwillingness to renounce a sin. It’s not referring to a state of weakness, as it were.
    Comment by Liam

    I do not think that attachment to sin refers only “to an unwillingness to renounce a sin”.

    But if it were true, it would make things a whole lot easier.

  23. Jim Larkin says:

    Translation question: Shouldn’t “sollemnitas liturgica PrincipUM Apostolorum” be “the liturgical solemnity of the PrinceS of the Apostles?” “Principum is genitive plural, isn’t it?

  24. Jim Larkin says:

    Translation question: Shouldn’t “sollemnitas liturgica PrincipUm Apostolorum” be “the liturgical solemnity of the PrinceS of the Apostles?” “Principum” is genitive plural, isn’t it?

  25. Liam says:

    RBrown

    Here is the most recent opinion (March 2008) about attachment to sin from an EWTN canonist (Rev. Mark J. Gantley, JCL) not known for his laxity, an opinion consistent with those given by many others over the years:

    “The idea of no attachment to sin means that there is no sin from which a person is not willing to repent. It is primarily an act of the will, not an emotional state.”

  26. Animadversor says:

    Jim Larkin: Yes, it is.

  27. Willebrord says:

    I’m a little confused…
    Does it mean that the plenary indulgence can be obtained at any time between June 28 2008 and June 29 2009?

    BTW, I considered using my real name here, until I found that Shane had it already. So I used my little-known confirmation name.

  28. RBrown says:

    Here is the most recent opinion (March 2008) about attachment to sin from an EWTN canonist (Rev. Mark J. Gantley, JCL) not known for his laxity, an opinion consistent with those given by many others over the years:

    “The idea of no attachment to sin means that there is no sin from which a person is not willing to repent. It is primarily an act of the will, not an emotional state.”
    Comment by Liam

    That opinion sounds like Rahner’s Fundamental Option.

    Specifically, the opinion has an undistributed middle term: The particular act of the Will in resisting the passions in a sin of frailty (weakness) is not the same as the act of the Will in repenting, which is general. And so it is possible–and common–that someone repent of attachment to a particular sin, yet not be able to resist the impulse of the passions. And so the attachment would remain.

    NB: According to St Thomas (and reason) in every human act there are two movements of the will: The first toward the end (Intention) and the second is in willing the moral object (which is the proportion of the action to the effect). The will to repent concerns Intention. But good Intention doesn’t necessarily mean goodness of the moral object because (as here in the matter of sins of weakness) of the presence of antecedent passion.

    Even though the culpability of sins of weakness is mitigated by antecedent passion, nevertheless, it doesn’t negate all culpability.

  29. Liam says:

    RBrown

    You are free to your more narrow interpretation, if you prefer, though the Rahner reference is utterly inappropriate because even attrition and contrition are long explained by the Church as actions of the will rather than emotion.

    Given the consistency with which I’ve seen explanations along the canonist’s line over the years (and not from Rahner fans), I feel his is the more trustworthy interpretation.

  30. RBrown says:

    You are free to your more narrow interpretation, if you prefer, though the Rahner reference is utterly inappropriate because even attrition and contrition are long explained by the Church as actions of the will rather than emotion.

    So you’re saying that St Thomas’ theology is narrow?

    I explained the problem in terms of the will, but you seem not to have understood it.

    Given the consistency with which I’ve seen explanations along the canonist’s line over the years (and not from Rahner fans), I feel his is the more trustworthy interpretation.
    Comment by Liam

    I think St Thomas is more trustworthy.

  31. Liam says:

    RBrown

    St Thomas is not providing an interpretation of the intended meaning of a juridical term. Hence, the canonist’s opinion is more on point. People use and misuse St Thomas for all sorts of reasons. It’s not dispositive here. You are giving me your private interpretation of how you think St Thomas might have reasoned about the action of the will. You may invoke St Thomas but you are not St Thomas. The canonist is giving an interpretation (consistent with others I’ve come across over the years) about how a provision in the Enchiridion is intended to be interpreted. His trumps yours.