How to earn a plenary indulgence?

Source: District of Canada

An indulgence is a remission of the temporal penalty due to sins, which the Church concedes under certain conditions to those who are in a state of grace, applying to them the superabundant merits and satisfactions of Jesus Christ, the Blessed Virgin and the Saints.

These merits and satisfactions constitute the treasure of the Church.

There are two kinds of indulgences: plenary indulgence and partial indulgence.

Plenary indulgence is that which remits all the temporal punishment due to sins.

A partial indulgence is one that remits only part of the temporal punishment due to sins.

By indulgence of forty or one hundred days, seven years, and the like, is meant the remission of the temporal punishment equivalent to that which would have been expiated by forty, one hundred days or seven years of the penance formerly established by the Church.

Six general rules to obtain a plenary indulgence:

  • To be in a state of grace, at least at the time of the execution of the act of indulgence.
  • Complete detachment from sin, even venial sin.
  • Confession (8 days before or after the act of indulgence).
  • Communion on the same day.
  • Prayers for the Supreme Pontiff.
  • Carry out the action to which the indulgence is attached.