How to Gain the Jubilee Indulgence
Our Holy Father Pope John Paul II has declared a Great Jubilee for the year 2000. It will begin on Christmas Eve 1999 and continue until the Epiphany of Our Lord Jesus Christ, 6 January 2001. All the faithful, properly prepared, can enjoy throughout the Jubilee, the gift of a plenary indulgence.
What is a plenary indulgence? It is the remission before God of all the temporal punishment due to sins whose guilt has already been forgiven. It can be obtained by those properly disposed under certain prescribed conditions through the action of the Church. The indulgence may be applied to the living or the dead.
The plenary indulgence can be gained according to the following norms:
1) A plenary indulgence can be gained only once a day.
2) After worthily celebrating sacramental confession, each member of the faithful can receive the gift of the plenary indulgence during a suitable time, even daily.
3) The sacrament of penance and the Eucharist must be accompanied by prayer for the intentions of the Roman Pontiff and also by acts of charity and penance.
4) Participation in the Eucharist should take place on the same day as the prescribed works are performed.
Confessors can commute, on behalf of those legitimately impeded, both the work prescribed and the conditions required. All those who are not able to leave their own house gain the indulgence by spiritually uniting themselves with those carrying out the prescribed work in the ordinary manner and by offering to God their prayers, sufferings and discomforts.
With regard to the required conditions [confession. Holy Communion, prayers for the intentions of the Holy Father, and acts of charity and penance] the faithful can gain the Jubilee indulgence:
1) In Rome if they make a pious pilgrimage to one of the Basilicas.
2) In the Holy Land, if they visit the Basilica of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem, or the Basilica of the Nativity in Bethlehem or the Basilica of the Annunciation in Nazareth.
3) In the diocese, if they make a sacred pilgrimage to the Cathedral Church or to other Churches or places designated by the Ordinary (Bishop), and there devoutly assist
—at a liturgical celebration or other pious exercise, such as the Stations of the Cross or Rosary;
—or spend some time there in pious meditation, ending with the "Our Father", Creed and prayer to the Blessed Virgin Mary.
4) In any place, if they visit for a suitable time their brothers and sister in need or in difficulty (the sick, the imprisoned, the elderly living alone, the handicapped, etc.), as if making a pilgrimage to Christ present in them, and fulfilling the usual spiritual and sacramental conditions and saying the usual prayers. The faithful will certainly wish to repeat these visits throughout the Holy Year, since on each occasion they can gain the plenary indulgence, although obviously only once a day.
The plenary indulgence of the Jubilee also can be gained through actions which express in a practical and generous way the penitential spirit. This would include abstaining for at least one whole day from unnecessary consumption (e.g.. from smoking or alcohol, or fasting or practicing abstinence according to the general rules of the Church and the norms laid down by the Bishop's Conferences) and donating a proportionate sum of money to the poor; supporting by a significant contribution works of a religious or social nature (especially for the benefit of abandoned children, young people in trouble, the elderly in need, foreigners in various countries seeking better living conditions); devoting a suitable portion of personal free time to activities benefiting the community, or other similar forms of personal sacrifice.
This item 1043 digitally provided courtesy of CatholicCulture.org