The Flame: March & April 2005
Dear Readers of The Flame,
Indulgence-what is the first thing you think of? Chocolate? Your favorite dessert? The purchase of a fancy car? Perhaps, in the thick of Lent, we ought to direct our thoughts away from indulgencing our cravings and more toward fasting!
However, during the Year of the Eucharist I want to
encourage you to think about indulgence. I am not tempting to indulge your
physical or even spiritual desires. I am asking you to receive the gifts that
the Lord makes available to us through the Church. The faithful are given an
opportunity to gain a plenary indulgence for the
By a plenary indulgence the repentant sinner receives remission of the temporal punishment due for the sins already forgiven as regards the fault. The Catechism of the Catholic Church #1472 states, that “every sin, even venial, entails an unhealthy attachment to creatures, which must be purified either here on earth or after death in the state called Purgatory.” For more about indulgences, please go to: www.newadvent.org/cathen/07783a.htm.
To receive this plenary indulgence during this Year of the Eucharist the faithful must:
|Participate in a sacred function or devotion in honor of the Blessed Sacrament, exposed or conserved in the tabernacle, or recite vespers and night prayers before the Lord present in the tabernacle|
|Receive communion on the day of the act;|
|Confession within a week before or after the act;|
|Have complete detachment from all sin including venial;|
|Pray for the Pope’s intentions.|
Pope John Paul II has attached this plenary indulgence to the Year of the Eucharist in order to foster devotion to the Blessed Sacrament.
In the Eucharist we renew the covenant and welcome the covenant maker, Jesus Christ. How often and devoutly we ought to draw near to our Eucharistic Lord.
Years ago, after celebrating a charismatic mass at the Sacred Heart Chapel on the Campus of what was then called Borromeo College (now the Center for Pastoral Leadership), a woman came up to me and told me that Jesus had visited her house the other night. I told her that Jesus had just visited us at mass. She then told me, “But Jesus really visited me at my house the other night!” And I told her, “And Jesus really came to us in the Eucharist we had just celebrated.” Our conversation continued along a similar line and I was wondering if I was making any headway.
I was trying to highlight something that St. Teresa of
As we go through this year especially dedicated to the Eucharist, may our devotion to the Lord in this most Blessed Sacrament propel us into a deeper life in the Spirit.
Sincerely in Christ,
Fr. Bob Franco