Plenary indulgence available for Year of Consecrated Life

BRAINTREE -- Cardinal Seán P. O'Malley has issued a decree which will allow Catholics to receive a plenary indulgence during the Year of Consecrated Life, which runs through Feb. 2, 2016, the World Day of Consecrated Life.

The decree was issued by the cardinal Sept. 3 and went into effect Sept. 10 and spells out the requirements for Catholics in the Archdiocese of Boston to receive the indulgence.

Catholics can gain the plenary indulgence by making a pilgrimage to Cathedral of the Holy Cross in the South End and St. Clement Shrine in Back Bay anytime during the Year of Consecrated Life.

There are also two special occasions during which the faithful can also receive the indulgence.

It is available to those who attend the Archdiocesan Celebration of the Year of Consecrated Life at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross on Nov. 29. Or, if not attending, they can obtain the indulgence by visiting at any church open for public worship in the archdiocese after 2 p.m. in continuation of the celebration that day.

Also, on Oct. 3, the Transitus of St. Francis and on Oct. 4, the Feast of St. Francis, the faithful can receive the indulgence by "worshiping together with Franciscan women and men at their places of worship and/or, where invited, at their residences," the decree states.

While making the pilgrimage or attending a special celebration, those seeking the indulgence must, while at the specially designated site, "Recite publicly the Liturgy of the Hours, or for an appropriate amount of time, dedicate themselves to pious thoughts," the decree said.

After that, one must pray the Our Father, recite the Profession of Faith or Creed, and make "pious invocations" to the Blessed Virgin Mary.

In addition, the usual conditions for obtaining an indulgence apply: one must pray for the intentions of the pope, and make a sacramental confession and receive Communion as soon as possible.

The Catechism of the Catholic Church, sections 1471-1473, defines an indulgence in this way: "An indulgence is a remission before God of the temporal punishment due to sins whose guilt has already been forgiven, which the faithful Christian who is duly disposed gains under certain prescribed conditions through the action of the Church which, as the minister of redemption, dispenses and applies with authority the treasury of the satisfactions of Christ and the saints.

"'An indulgence is partial or plenary according as it removes either part or all of the temporal punishment due to sin.' The faithful can gain indulgences for themselves or apply them to the dead."

It continues, "To understand this doctrine and practice of the Church, it is necessary to understand that sin has a double consequence. Grave sin deprives us of communion with God and therefore makes us incapable of eternal life, the privation of which is called the 'eternal punishment' of sin. On the other hand every sin, even venial, entails an unhealthy attachment to creatures, which must be purified either here on earth, or after death in the state called Purgatory. This purification frees one from what is called the 'temporal punishment' of sin. These two punishments must not be conceived of as a kind of vengeance inflicted by God from without, but as following from the very nature of sin. A conversion which proceeds from a fervent charity can attain the complete purification of the sinner in such a way that no punishment would remain."

Below is the text of the decree.


In Nomine Domini

On November 23, 2014, His Eminence, Mauro Cardinal Piacenza, Major Penitentiary, under the mandate of the Roman Pontiff, and on behalf of the Apostolic Penitentiary, decreed the granting of a Plenary Indulgence for the Year of Consecrated Life to all individual members of Institutes of Consecrated Life, and to the other faithful, truly contrite and moved by the spirit of charity, to be obtained from the First Sunday in Advent, 2014 until February 2, 2016, that can also be applied as suffrage for the souls in Purgatory.

In light of this Decree of the Apostolic Penitentiary, I hereby designate the following places of pilgrimage where this Plenary Indulgence is possible until February 2, 2016:

the Cathedral of the Holy Cross, Boston, Massachusetts; and

Saint Clement Shrine, Boston Massachusetts,

and I hereby designate the following days as Archdiocesan days dedicated to consecrated life in which the Plenary Indulgence may be obtained:

on the Transitus of Saint Francis, the evening of October 3, 2015 and the Feast of Saint Francis, October 4, 2015, for all those worshipping together with Franciscan women and men at their places of public worship and/or, where invited, at their residences;

the Archdiocesan Celebration of the Year for Consecrated Life at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross on Sunday, November 29, 2015;

and in continuation of the Archdiocesan Celebration of the Year of Consecrated Life on November 29, 2015, beginning at 2 pm at any and all churches that are open for public worship within the Archdiocese of Boston.

All members of Institutes of Consecrated Life and all Catholics in the Archdiocese of Boston truly contrite and moved by the spirit of charity, who wish to seek this indulgence are to observe the usual conditions:

-- Sacramentally confess their sins;

-- Receive the Holy Eucharist;

-- Pray for the intentions of the Supreme Pontiff, the Pope.

In addition, to obtain the indulgence for the Year of Consecrated Life, while at one of the approved places noted above, they are to:

-- Recite publicly the Liturgy of the Hours, or for an appropriate amount of time, dedicate themselves to pious thoughts;

-- Concluding the time of prayer with the Our Father, the Profession of Faith (or Creed) and pious invocations to the Blessed Virgin Mary.

Members of Institutes of Consecrated Life who, due to illness or other grave causes, are prevented from visiting these holy places can equally obtain the Plenary Indulgence if, with complete detachment from any sin and with the intention of accomplishing as soon as possible the three usual conditions, they accomplish a spiritual visit with deep desire and offer the infirmities and pain of their own life to the Merciful God through the Blessed Virgin Mary, with the addition of the prayers as indicated above.

This Decree will be effective from September 10, 2015 to February 2, 2016.

Given at the Pastoral Center of the Archdiocese of Boston in Braintree, Massachusetts this 3rd day of September, 2015.

Cardinal Seán P. O'Malley

Archbishop of Boston

John Straub


Archbishop Lori assures diocese he's with them in journey toward healing

WHEELING, W.Va. (CNS) -- In his celebration of Mass at the Cathedral of St. Joseph in Wheeling Sept. 15, Archbishop William E. Lori of Baltimore said ...

Bishop takes a (sky) dive to get pilgrims to Lourdes

HOVE, England (CNS) -- "The Moth has landed," tweeted the Diocese of Arundel and Brighton. The tweet Sept. 14 and a similar post on the diocesan Facebook ...

Words, promises are not enough to prevent abuse, archbishop says

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Inviting presidents of the world's bishops' conference to the Vatican to discuss abuse prevention reflects an understanding that ...

Pope praises Capuchin order's charism of authenticity, simplicity

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Capuchins are called to be men of peace, reconciliation and prayer and to be close to all people, Pope Francis told members of the ...

Path to healing starts with seeking forgiveness, Cardinal Wuerl says

WASHINGTON (CNS) -- A "Season of Healing" for sexual abuse survivors began in the Archdiocese of Washington with a Sept. 14 Mass at the Cathedral of St. ...

Archbishop McCarrick's unofficial role in Vatican-China relations

Vatican City, Sep 17, 2018 CNA.- Following reports that the Holy See and the People’s Republic of China could be about to sign an agreement ...

Archbishop Chaput: When we forget faith, we forget our humanity

Spokane, Wash., Sep 14, 2018 CNA.- When man tries to cling to reason and separate himself from faith, he forgets who he is and loses his source of hope, ...

Pope Francis warns priests against living a double life

Palermo, Italy, Sep 15, 2018 CNA/EWTN News.- During a day trip to Sicily Saturday, Pope Francis told priests and religious to fight their vices and strive ...

What is the pontifical secret?

Vatican City, Sep 14, 2018 CNA.- Following the allegations made by Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò about the case of Archbishop Theodore McCarrick, ...

Vatican publishes list of synod participants, including papal nominees

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- To the list of members of the Synod of Bishops elected by national bishops' conferences, Pope Francis added cardinals from 14 countries, ...

Addicts and their loved ones talk about life with opioid addiction

ARLINGTON, Va. (CNS) -- It was a Saturday night, and Billy was eating pizza and watching a sporting event in the basement bedroom of his residence, a ...

Signers of letter hope Vatican meeting will bring needed steps on crisis

WASHINGTON (CNS) -- Signers of an open letter from Catholic women to Pope Francis urging "truth" and "transparency" on the growing sex abuse crisis expressed ...

Community 'overwhelmed and shell-shocked' after gas explosions, says pastor

LAWRENCE -- Volunteers at St. Patrick Church's Cor Unum Meal Center were serving dinner when multiple natural gas explosions and fires broke out in homes ...

Down to earth: Vatican brings together world's meteorite curators

CASTEL GANDOLFO, Italy (CNS) -- Rocks, mineral debris and even dust from space are kept in special collections, museums and laboratories all over the ...

Algerian martyrs to be beatified in Algeria Dec. 8

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- The beatification of 19 martyrs of Algeria, including the seven Trappist monks of Tibhirine, will be celebrated Dec. 8 in Oran, ...

'Anything but a picnic' - Cardinal Dolan on the Church's summer of scandal

New York City, N.Y., Sep 14, 2018 CNA.- Cardinal Timothy Dolan has spoken about how the extended sexual abuse scandals facing the Church have taken a ...

Restoring and reimagining: Transformation at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross

BOSTON -- Considered by many to be the heart of the Archdiocese of Boston, the Cathedral of the Holy Cross is the largest Catholic church in New England, ...

Archdiocese says Cardinal O'Malley will personally review all abuse letters

BRAINTREE (CAN) -- The Archdiocese of Boston has announced changes to the way it will process and respond to letters addressed to Cardinal Séan P. ...

CM receives $2.5M grant from Yawkey Foundations

West Roxbury -- Catholic Memorial, a college-preparatory school for boys in grades 7 to 12, announced Sept. 5 that they have received a $2.5 million grant ...

Father Christian Ohazulume removed from ministry

BRAINTREE -- The Archdiocese announced on Sept. 11 that it had removed a priest from ministry after receiving an allegation that he sexually abused a ...

From Cardinal Seán's blog

This week I am in transit to Rome in anticipation of the next meeting of the C9 Council of Cardinals. So, I have asked Vivian Soper to share some reflections ...

Kavanaugh's birth control comments spur controversy -- What did he say?

Washington D.C. (CNA) -- Opponents of Judge Brett Kavanaugh have suggested that a reference to birth control pills as "abortion-inducing drugs" during ...

Missouri to enforce abortion regulations in wake of appeals court ruling

Jefferson City, Mo. (CNA) -- Missouri's health department announced Monday that it will immediately being enforcing state laws regulating abortion clinics ...

Book tells about behind-the-scenes search for St. Peter's bones

HOUSTON (CNS) -- Two Houston men shared a journey through centuries of history and a decades-long archaeological dig under the Vatican to unveil a story ...

Update way priests are chosen, accompanied, pope tells new bishops

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- The best way to help the Catholic Church, Pope Francis told new bishops, is not by pointing fingers and creating scapegoats, but ...

Vatican confirms ongoing Sistine Chapel Choir finance inquiry

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- The Vatican confirmed an ongoing investigation into financial irregularities involving the directors of the Sistine Chapel Choir. ...

After meeting pope, cardinal says he's hopeful about addressing crisis

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Cardinal Daniel N. DiNardo of Galveston-Houston struck a determinedly hopeful tone after his long-awaited meeting with Pope Francis ...

DA clears Indiana bishop of misconduct, says claim has harmed prelate

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (CNS) -- The Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend welcomed findings by a Pennsylvania district attorney that cleared Bishop Kevin C. Rhoades ...

Cardinal DiNardo calls meeting with pope lengthy, fruitful

Vatican City, Sep 13, 2018 CNA/EWTN News.- Cardinal Daniel DiNardo has called a Sept. 13 meeting between Pope Francis and leaders from the Church in United ...

What do Church abuse policies mean by 'vulnerable adult?'

Denver, Colo., Sep 12, 2018 CNA.- A Vatican summit this February will gather the presidents of bishops’ conferences from around the world. While ...

'Elitist, clericalist' church allows abuse to thrive, pope says

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Sexual and physical abuse by priests and religious and the scandal of its cover-up by church authorities thrive in countries where ...

Cardinal Wuerl to ask pope to accept his resignation

Washington D.C., Sep 12, 2018 CNA.- An archdiocesan spokesman has confirmed that Cardinal Donald Wuerl will soon ask Pope Francis to accept his resignation ...

Pope accepts resignation of West Virginia bishop as inquiry into abuse claims launched

Vatican City, Sep 13, 2018 CNA/EWTN News.- Pope Francis Thursday accepted the resignation of Bishop Michael J. Bransfield from the pastoral government ...

Leaked German report shows 3,700 cases of abuse of minors in 68 years

WASHINGTON (CNS) -- A 350-page document leaked to German media and published Sept. 12 documents nearly 3,700 cases of alleged sexual abuse of minors by ...

Pope accepts resignation of Brazilian bishop arrested for embezzlement

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Pope Francis accepted the resignation of a Brazilian bishop who was arrested and charged with embezzling thousands of dollars in ...

Love breaks chains of slavery to sin, pope says

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Only true love for God and neighbor can destroy the chains of greed, lust, anger and envy that enslave humankind, Pope Francis said. ...

Washington cardinal to meet with pope to discuss resignation

WASHINGTON (CNS) -- Cardinal Donald W. Wuerl of Washington has told the priests of the archdiocese that he will meet soon with Pope Francis to request ...

Pope to convene world meeting on abuse prevention with bishops' leaders

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Pope Francis is calling the presidents of every Catholic bishops' conference in the world to Rome Feb. 21-24 to discuss the prevention ...

Supreme Court petition next step in effort to stop natural gas pipeline

WASHINGTON (CNS) -- A Pennsylvania religious congregation planned to petition the U.S. Supreme Court to consider whether their religious freedom rights ...