II. C. Increase in the Life of God - Indulgences


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C.  Indulgences

1.  Nature 


Sin is a voluntary act or omission which we deliberately reject the love of God.  The Sacrament of Reconciliation (Penance) allows for the guilt of these sins to be removed.  While the sin may be forgiven through the sacrament, punishment for that sin remains.  This must be satisfied either in this life or hereafter before one may enter into the eternal presence of the all-perfect God.     


There is no imperfection in heaven, and in order to enter heaven and enjoy the presence of God, we must be "perfect as our heavenly father is perfect."  We must become like precious metals which are refined to remove the imperfections of sin.  This refining process is accomplished either here on earth, or after death in a place called Purgatory, (a place of cleansing).                           


The Church is the minister of the graces earned through Christís redemptive act, and has been given the authority to dispense and apply the treasury of these graces to assist the faithful reach heaven.  An indulgence is the remission before God of the temporal punishment due to sin whose guilt has already been forgiven.

C.   Indulgences
 2.   Partial

       a.  Effect
- A Partial Indulgence remits a part of the temporal punishment due to sin. 

       b.  Necessary conditions to receive.
  ۰  Be in the state of grace.

              ۰  Raise the mind in humble trust to God and make some type of pious verbal or mental  invocation.  (mental or verbal prayer).

              ۰  Study and teach Christian Doctrine prompted by the spirit of faith and charity.

              ۰  Devote oneself or one's goods, when prompted by faith, to lovingly serve others in need, such as in the Corporal & Spiritual works of  Mercy as listed below: 
      c.  Means available to us.

           Corporal Works of Mercy                                

              ۰  Feed the hungry.                                                     

              ۰  Give drink to the thirsty.                               

              ۰  Clothe the naked.                                                    

              ۰  Shelter the homeless.                                               

              ۰  Visit the sick.                                                          

              ۰  Visit the imprisoned.                                                

              ۰  Bury the dead  

            Spiritual Works of Mercy
۰  Counsel the doubtful .  
۰  Instruct the ignorant.
۰  Admonish the sinner.
۰  Bear wrongs patiently.
۰  Pray for the living and the dead.

3.  Plenary

     a.  Effect - A Plenary Indulgence remits the whole of the temporal punishment due to sin according to the disposition of the person and the justice of God.

     b.  Necessary conditions to receive.

               ۰  Be in the state of grace .

               ۰  Confession within eight days on either side of the action.

               ۰  Communion on the day before the action, or eight days following the action.

               ۰  Prayer for the intentions of the Holy Father together with a desire of the mind and heart to reject the attraction of sin. (Say one Our Father and One Hail Mary).

               ۰  Then we must perform any one of the following actions to gain a Plenary Indulgence. 

      c.  Means available to us.

               ۰  Adore of the Blessed Sacrament for a least one-half hour.

               ۰  Devoutly read the Sacred Scriptures for at least one-half hour.

               ۰  Recite the rosary (five decades) in a church, public oratory, a family group, a religious

                    community, or pious association.

               ۰  Make the Way of the Cross (Fourteen Stations).


Note:  In addition to these, the Church gives its members numerous additional opportunities to gain Plenary Indulgences.  Ask a priest to learn more.

      d.  Restrictions to obtaining a Plenary Indulgence.

               ۰  Only one Plenary Indulgence may be gained each day.

               ۰  May be applied to the souls or a particular soul in Purgatory.

               ۰  May be applied to oneself.

               ۰  May not be applied to another living person.

      e.    Year of Mercy indulgenced opportunities. December 8, 2015 - November 20, 2016.
                *  Complete conditions of 3b (above).
                *  Perform any of the works of mercy:
              1.  Corporal Works of Mercy.
                *  Feed the hungry
                *  Give drink to the thirsty
                *  Clothe the naked
                *  Shelter the homeless
                *  Visit the imprisoned
                *  Visit the sick
                *  Bury the dead
              2.  Spiritual Works of mercy
                *  Instruct the ignorant
                *  Counsel the doubtful
                *  Admonish sinners
                *  Bear wrongs patiently
                *  Forgive offenses willingly
                *  Comfort the sorrowful
                *  Pray for the living and the dead