Pope Francis made it possible to obtain a plenary indulgence on December 12th, the 125th Anniversary of the Coronation of Our Lady of Guadalupe.
In announcing the indulgence following the closure of the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Mexico City, Mexico City Cardinal Carlos Aguiar Retes said:
“Aware of the fact that the devotion to the Virgen Morena goes beyond our borders, the Holy Father thought it appropriate to offer this indulgence to all the Catholic faithful of the world to join in our celebration by adhering to the requirements of the Indulgence. Those who desire, seek the comfort, protection and tenderness of Our Most Holy Mother, to take advantage of this grace that Pope Francis has granted us and which extends to the faithful who have died. Let us allow Our Lady to visit us in our homes this year. Let us open our doors to her and lift up our hearts so that she may bless us and cover us with her mantle. May Our Lord Jesus Christ and His Most Holy Mother, Saint Mary of Guadalupe, continue to accompany us and bless us on this painful journey for all the people of God who wander in our archdiocese and throughout the world.”
To receive the indulgence, one must: “prepare an altar or place of prayer to Our Lady of Guadalupe at home” and “watch a livestream or televised Mass at the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Mexico City on 12 December actively participating with devotion and with exclusive attention to the Eucharist.”
In addition, the granting of indulgences are predicated on the internal disposition of the person and by meeting the three other prerequisites: Sacramental Confession, Holy Communion, and Prayer for the Intentions of the Pope. All must be performed within days of each other if not at the same time. Additionally, one must be free from all attachment to sin. What does that mean? Freedom from attachment to sin does not mean freedom from all sin – that would be impossible. Rather, it means there must be no sin the soul is not willing to renounce, possibly the most difficult requirement.
If any of the above four conditions aren’t meant, you can still receive a partial indulgence – a partial remission of the temporal punishment associated with sin.
“An indulgence is partial or plenary according as it removes either part or all of the temporal punishment due to sin.” – CCC 1471
However, given COVID-closures, Pope Francis said the “last three conditions can be fulfilled when public health guidance allow.”
Interesting in learning more about the various indulgences? Read about the Enchiridion of Indulgences here.