CHARLESTON — The faithful of South Carolina who wish to obtain a special indulgence during the 2008-2009 jubilee year of St. Paul may do so in some churches close to home.
Pope Benedict XVI authorized the granting of a plenary, or full indulgence in order to highlight the Pauline year which marks the 2000th anniversary of St. Paul’s birth. The Pauline year runs from June 28, 2008, to June 29, 2009, to mark the approximately 2,000th anniversary of the saint’s birth.
Msgr. Martin T. Laughlin, administrator of the Diocese of Charleston, has designated eight churches where people may fulfill the indulgence.
The South Carolina churches include:
Cathedral of St. John the Baptist, Charleston
Precious Blood of Christ, Pawleys Island
St. Anthony, Florence
St. Francis by the Sea, Hilton Head Island
St. Paul the Apostle Mission, Seneca
St. Paul the Apostle, Spartanburg
St. Peter, Beaufort
St. Peter, Columbia
An indulgence is a remission of the temporal punishment a person is due for sins that have been forgiven. It is only achieved by receiving the sacrament of confession and the Eucharist, and praying for the pope’s intentions.
Catholics in South Carolina may go to any of the churches and participate with devotion in a liturgy or other public event dedicated to St. Paul — in any sacred place on the opening and closing days of the jubilee year, and on other days in places designated by the local bishop.
Those who cannot make a journey due to physical illness or serious impediments, and have the sincere intention of fulfilling the other conditions as soon as possible, can obtain a plenary indulgence by joining spiritually in a jubilee celebration in honor of St. Paul and offering their prayers and suffering for Christian unity.
The indulgence also will be given to pilgrims who go to Rome, to Catholics who participate in local events connected to the jubilee year, and to those who may be too ill or otherwise prevented from physical participation.
It can be granted on behalf of the individual or for departed souls.
The faithful can receive one indulgence each day during the jubilee.