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Monday, August 03, 2015

The Path to a Plenary Indulgence

Pope Francis has granted a plenary indulgence to pilgrims who travel on the Camino Ignaciano, or Ignatian Way, between July 31, 2015, and July 31, 2016. 

July 31 is the feast of St. Ignatius of Loyola, the founder of the Society of Jesus. 

The Camino Ignaciano, inaugurated in 2012, retraces the journey of St. Ignatius in northern Spain from Loyola to Manresa, where he lived in a cave and began to write the Spiritual Exericses.
The Pontiff called upon pilgrims to undergo a "journey of profound conversion" in which they ask whether Christ is "truly the center of my life." 

The Catholic Encyclopedia writes:

 By a plenary indulgence is meant the remission of the entire temporal punishment due to sin so that no further expiation is required in Purgatory.A partial indulgence commutes only a certain portion of the penalty; and this portion is determined in accordance with the penitential discipline of the early Church. To say that an indulgence of so many days or years is granted means that it cancels an amount of purgatorial punishment equivalent to that which would have been remitted, in the sight of God, by the performance of so many days or years of the ancient canonical penance. Here, evidently, the reckoning makes no claim to absolute exactness; it has only a relative value.