Plenary Indulgence – Praying for your Loved Ones

Plenary Indulgence

As you may know, for us as Catholics November is known as the month of “All Souls;” and it’s an opportune time to remember our deceased loved ones in a special way (and to also reflect on our own mortality, too).  We can do both of those things by making a visit to the graves of our loved ones.  In fact, there is a plenary indulgence connected to visiting a cemetery on any day between November 1st and November 8th each year. While visiting, make sure to spend some time in prayer for your loved ones, and maybe do a little sprucing up around their headstone.  But in order to obtain the plenary indulgence, you must also pray for the Pope’s intentions while you’re there (an Our Father, Hail Mary, and Glory Be will do), and make sure to receive Holy Communion and go to Confession during that time span.  The indulgence can be applied to yourself or anyone who’s deceased, and you can obtain one per day from the 1st  through the 8th.  What does the plenary indulgence do?  It relieves any “temporal punishment” (spiritual damage) that we have done to ourselves through our sins.  That damage needs to be purified and transformed even after we’ve been forgiven!  Therefore, we each need to go through a purification process either after death (Purgatory), or in this life, before we can enter into God’s presence in heaven.  And a plenary indulgence, as prescribed by the Church in Jesus’ name, is one beautiful way of being purified in this life.