Summary of the Decree of Indulgence

 


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O God, your mercy knows no bounds and the treasure of your goodness is infinite..." (Prayer after the "Te Deum" Hymn) 

"The paschal mystery is the culmination of this revealing and effecting of mercy, which is able to justify man, to restore justice in the sense of that salvific order which God willed from the beginning in man, and through man, in the world" (Encyclical Letter Dives in misericordia, n. 7).

"And so with provident pastoral sensitivity and in order to impress deeply on the souls of the faithful these precepts and teachings of the Christian faith, the Supreme Pontiff, John Paul II, moved by the consideration of the Father of Mercy, has willed that the Second Sunday of Easter be dedicated to recalling with special devotion these gifts of grace and gave this Sunday the name, "Divine Mercy Sunday" (Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, Decree Misericors et miserator, 5 May 2000).

Plenary indulgence

I. The usual conditions for every plenary indulgence:

  • sacramental confession [according to previously issued norms, within abut 20 days before or after] 
  • Eucharistic communion [according to previously issued norms, preferably on the day, or the days before or after] 
  • prayer for the intentions of Supreme Pontiff [certain prayers are not specified]

II. The specific conditions for this Indulgence

On Divine Mercy Sunday

  • in any church or chapel, in a spirit that is completely detached from the affection for a sin, even a venial sin, take part in the prayers and devotions held in honour of Divine Mercy
  • or, in the presence of the Blessed Sacrament exposed or reserved in the tabernacle, recite the Our Father and the Creed, adding a devout prayer to the merciful Lord Jesus (e.g. Merciful Jesus, I trust in you!")

Partial Indulgence

A partial indulgence, granted to the faithful who, at least with a contrite heart, pray to the merciful Lord Jesus a legitimately approved invocation. [e.g. Jesus I trust in You. My Jesus mercy. or any other approved invocation]

Those who cannot go to church or the seriously ill

Conditions for a Plenary Indulgence:

  • totally detesting any sin, 
  • the intention of fulfilling as soon as possible the three usual conditions of confession, communion and prayers for the Holy Father
  • recite the Our Father and the Creed before a devout image of Our Merciful Lord Jesus 
  • pray a devout invocation to the Merciful Lord Jesus (e.g. Merciful Jesus, I trust in you).

If it is impossible to do even this:

  • with a spiritual intention unite with those carrying out the prescribed practice for obtaining the Indulgence in the usual way and 
  • offer to the Merciful Lord a prayer and the sufferings of their illness and the difficulties of their lives, with the resolution to accomplish as soon as possible the three conditions prescribed to obtain the plenary indulgence.

Duty of priests

Priests who exercise pastoral ministry, especially parish priests, should 

  • inform the faithful in the most suitable way of the Church's salutary provision [of a plenary indulgence].

  • promptly and generously be willing to hear their confessions [this does not necessarily have to be on Divine Mercy Sunday itself, since that is not a condition for the indulgence]

On Divine Mercy Sunday, after celebrating Mass or Vespers, or during devotions in honour of Divine Mercy, 

  • lead the recitation of the prayers
  • when they instruct their people, gently encourage the faithful to practise works of charity or mercy as often as they can

 

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