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November 01, 2006

Comments

hippo354

Happy feast day everyone! Thank God for masstimes.org.

Frank

Thanks for this wonderful picture of martyr saints of Korea!

Tim J.

Please ask all the saints to pray for my nephew - a newborn - undergoing heart surgery today.

JoAnna

I went to a lovely noon Mass at my parish.

Happy All Saints, everyone!

Charlie

Herer in Canada we have 54 Holy Days of Obligation. Does that make us a Holy Nation, A People set apart?

SDG

Herer in Canada we have 54 Holy Days of Obligation. Does that make us a Holy Nation, A People set apart?

Huh? That's one per week plus two left over. There aren't that many feast days on the calendar -- unless you're including Sundays -- in which case, you have only two non-Sunday HDOs, which would not be compelling evidence for Canadian HN/PSA status.

John

Is All Saints day even a holy day of obligation any more- I know it is in the Traditional Church

Charlie

"Is All Saints day even a holy day of obligation any more- I know it is in the Traditional Church"
I would not want to offend anyone but exactly what is the "Traditional Church"?
Yes in Canada we have two HDO...Christmas and January 1st..and meatless Fridays are out as well.The Bishops make the decision for the whole country and what with most families having to both work,etc..not eating meat and replacing it with some other prayer/fast is deemed appropriate.In my many visits to the US I have found some confusion as to whether Jan 1 is a HDO in the whole of the US. I was given to understand that Dioceses make their own decisions in these matters and it is not applied equally across the country. Do I have that right?
We do have Mass here in Canada and confession (of BIG sins) at least once a year.

Dave

Thanks for the pic... St. Andrew Kim and the holy Korean martyrs, pray for us!

Mike

In Oz it's just Christmas and the Assumption (apart from the Sundays).

Jan 1st is "recovery day" and Ascension Thursday is on a Sunday.

RalphJ.

The 2nd is All Soul's Day, and we are to pray for people in Purgatory. Here is something seemingly unresolvable:

1) We must be made perfect before entering God's presence (implying the need for Purgatory)

...but...

2) We can avoid it by gaining a plenary indulgence.

It seems either you need purgatory or you don't?

Inocencio

RalphJ,

We can avoid it by gaining a plenary indulgence

A person can only gain the plenary indulgence if they are prepared to receive it. They must be free from all attachment to sin to receive the plenary indulgence even a small attachment (which is most of us) to sin would mean that only a partial indulgence would be gained.

I hope that makes sense.

Take care and God bless,
Inocencio
J+M+J

RalphJ.

The same principle works with a partial indulgence does it not? It seems like we're contradicting ourselves if we're saying "we need to be purified" while at the same time saying all or a portion of that purification can be removed. Protestants say God declares us righteous - i.e. no need for Purgatory. Fine. Catholics say God wants us to become cleansed to receive Him. Fine. But it is as if indulgences are an attempt to have it both ways - by declaring us righteous (in whole or in part) by the avoidance of part of Purgatory.

Esau

Ralph J.:

Basically, when we sin, there are a number of effects. One of them is we become guilty but we also – and when we’re forgiven – the guilt is taken away and so we’re no longer held accountable for our sin. We’re still guilty in the historical sense, ‘Oh, yeah, wait, I did that’; but God has forgiven us and, in that sense, has taken our guilt away. But, even when God has forgiven us, there can still be consequences to our sins.

One of the reasons is that we need to learn our lesson. It’s kind of like when you’ve got a kid and the kid keeps disobeying you – you know, let’s say he’s not doing his homework or something – and he then says, ‘I’m sorry’, and then you say, ‘Okay, I forgive you’, if you don’t have some consequences that go beyond the making him say 'I’m sorry', he’s not likely to learn his lesson. He’s likely to not keep doing his homework until he starts to suffer consequences that show him the value of doing his homework.

And so when we sin – even though when we repent and have been forgiven – there still may be consequences that linger, among other things, to help us grow in holiness so that we don’t do those things again.

What happens when an indulgence occurs, it basically the Church intervening in order to lessen those consequences. It’s kind of like, let’s say, your kid#1 has been sentenced to take out the garbage for a month because he hadn’t been doing his homework. You’ve forgiven him but he still needs to take out the garbage for a month. Kid#2 says I don’t like him to take all of that out by himself but I’d like to help him. Well, you as a parent might say, ‘Okay, that’s reasonable.’ You can help your brother take out the garbage and one reason why you may want to do that is because it helps kid#2 learn to be generous to others. Now, you might say, ‘No, he’s really messed up big enough, he has to do this himself!’ But you might say, ‘Oh, okay, you can help him’.

That’s kind of what an indulgence is. It’s the Church intervening to allow some of the Faithful to help other members of the Faithful as they deal with the consequences of sin as they grow in holiness.

The Church has never sold indulgences. That’s a myth. What did happen for a time is one of the good things you can do – most indulgences are like going on a pilgrimage, saying a prayer, or reading the bible or something like that, because those are all good things to do. It’s a good thing to go on pilgrimages or say prayers or read the bible. Well, you know what also is good to do? Donate to charitable causes such as the care of the poor or the Church building fund or things like that. And so back in Martin Luther’s time, it was allowed to have indulgences granted not only for prayers and pilgrimages and things like that, but also for charitable contributions because those were also good things the Church wanted to encourage. Eventually, though – and this was hundreds of years ago – the Church eliminated that practice and that no longer exists today.

Esau

Corrigendum:
And so when we sin – even though when we repent and have been forgiven – there still may be consequences that linger. Indulgences, among other things, help us grow in holiness so that we don’t do those things again.

Inocencio

RalphJ,

It seems like we're contradicting ourselves if we're saying "we need to be purified" while at the same time saying all or a portion of that purification can be removed.

We do need to be purified from our attachment to sin. That purification can be begin (or possibly for a saintly person be done) on Earth and/or be completed in Purgatory. The Church in her mercy makes indulgences availiable but we have to be prepared to receive them.

Everyone who wants an indulgence and performs the work but is not in a state of grace or has an attachment to sin does not receive the plenary indulgence. A plenary indulgence is not a get out of jail free card it is only received by some one who had conformed themselves to the will of God by giving up attachment to sin and asked for the indulgence.

Take care and God bless,
Inocencio
J+M+J

RalphJ

Well, I do appreciate y'all taking the time to answer. I guess what I'm hearing is that Purgatory has a two-fold purpose: punishment (i.e. basically same thing as Esau's "consequences") and purification.

The purification part takes place outside of an indulgence. The punishment part can be relieved partially or fully by indulgences.

Best I can picture it is this, even though Purgatory transcends time:

Say you get 1 year for purification and 3 years for punishment. If you might get 2 years off the punishment part of your sentence via a partial indulgence. A plenary indulgence removes the whole punishment (consequences) portion of the sentence.

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