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Catholic Culture News

Catholic Activity: Plenary Indulgences Attached to the Year of St. Joseph



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The gift of special Indulgences is granted on the occasion of the Year of Saint Joseph, December 8, 2020 through December 8, 2021, announced by Pope Francis to celebrate the 150th anniversary of the proclamation of Saint Joseph as Patron of the Universal Church, granted by the Apostolic Penitentiary.

The document is quite beautiful, and worthwhile reading. Each indulgence is attached to a particular aspect of St. Joseph. Below is a summary of the possibilities of indulgences:


The plenary indulgence is granted to the faithful under the usual conditions (sacramental confession, Eucharistic Communion, and prayer for the Pope’s intentions) to Christians who, with a spirit detached from any sin, participate in the Year of St. Joseph on these occasions and manners indicated by the Apostolic Penitentiary:

—At least 30 minute contemplation on the Lord’s Prayer, or a one day retreat that includes meditating on St. Joseph.

—Performing a Spiritual or Corporal Work of Mercy, following St. Joseph’s example

—praying the rosary together as a family or as an engaged couple

—Entrusting daily activities under the protection of St. Joseph, and those who ask intercession of St. Joseph to help those find employment and all work of people may be dignified.

—Reciting the Litany of St. Joseph, the Akathistos to St. Joseph, or any other prayer proper to other liturgical traditions, with the intention for the persecuted Church and relief of all suffering persecuted Christians.

—Reciting an approved prayer or act of piety in honor of St. Joseph especially on March 19 and May 1, Feast of the Holy Family, on St. Joseph’s Sunday (Byzantine), and on the 19th of each month and every Wednesday.

The plenary indulgences are also applied to those who cannot leave their homes for legitimate reason. They are encouraged to recite an act of piety to Joseph, offering to God the pains and hardships of their lives. They can obtain plenary indulgence if they are detached from any sin and the intention of fulfilling the usual conditions as soon as they are physically able.