Sunday 18th March 2012
For immediate release:
Pope Benedict XVI offers blessing and indulgence to mark reopening of landmark Wirral church
Pope Benedict XVI is offering a Papal Blessing with an attached Plenary Indulgence for all the faithful who attend the grand opening of the Shrine Church of Ss Peter and Paul and St Philomena, New Brighton, Wirral, on March 24
The Mass will mark the opening of the shrine church following the closure of the parish church in 2008. The Shrine Church will be a special place of prayer and devotion open every day for adoration of the Most Holy Eucharist. The church will also serve as a centre in the Diocese of Shrewsbury for the celebration of the Holy Mass and other sacraments in the Latin Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite. The Parish of Holy Apostles and Martyrs is served from the Parish Church of English Martyrs and Father Philip Moor, the parish priest, will assist at the opening Mass.
The church will become the first in Britain to be entrusted to the Institute of Christ the King Sovereign Priest, a society of Apostolic life of Pontifical Right.
The Celebrant at the Mass, which begins at 10.30am, will be Monsignor Gilles Wach, the French founder of the Institute, and the homily will be preached by the Rt Rev. Mark Davies, the Bishop of Shrewsbury.
People are expected to travel from different parts of the country and some from overseas to the church that the Bishop of Shrewsbury hopes will become a special centre of devotion for people from the immediate area and far beyond.
The Vatican, which has taken an interest in the establishment of the shrine church, has issued the following decree announcing the Papal Blessing and Plenary Indulgence (see notes below) to all the faithful who attend the Mass:
THE APOSTOLIC PENITENTIARY, empowered by a faculty granted to it in a special way by our Holy Father Benedict XVI, by Divine Providence Pope, happily grants his Lordship the Most Reverend Mark Davies, Bishop of Shrewsbury, that, on the 24th March next, on which the pastoral care of the Church of Saints Peter and Paul and St Philomena is solemnly entrusted to the members of the Institute of Christ the King Sovereign Priest, after the offering of the Divine Sacrifice, he may impart to all the faithful present, who, their souls entirely separated from attachment to sin, take part in the sacred mysteries, a Papal Blessing with an attached Plenary Indulgence, which may be gained under the usual conditions (sacramental Confession, Eucharistic Communion and Prayer for the intentions of the Supreme Pontiff).
Those faithful unable for a reasonable cause to be present at the sacred rites may devoutly receive this Papal Blessing and the Plenary Indulgence, according to the norms, if they follow the rites with a pious intention of mind by means of radio or television broadcast.
Nothing to the contrary withstanding.
Given at Rome, from the Apostolic Penitentiary, on 14th February in the year of Our Lord 2012.
This great story brings up an interesting point.
Consider the issue of pearls before swine.
Perhaps Holy Church ought to restrict the granting of indulgences only to those who believe in them.
We know these traditional groups promote the obtaining of indulgences, and many other groups and even parishes and even, dare I say it, dioceses, … how to put it… don’t care. Even when the Holy See grants indulgences to some groups or places, people don’t seem to care.
So, give them to those who care!
Tongue in cheek, of course. But not really.