Do you need to say the rosary...?


Someone told me this and I was just wondering.


Hi Bouligny.

It looks like you may be confusing/combining two distinct works; either one by which one may gain a plenary indulgence.

Here’s an excerpt from THE HANDBOOK OF INDULGENCES, 1991, Catholic Book Publishing Company, published by authority of the Bishops’ Comittee on the Liturgy, NCCB;[OTHER TYPES OF INDULGENCED GRANTS] PG 36,# 5:

  1. Worth special mention are those grants which list works by which the Christian faithful, by performing any one of them, can obtain a plenary indulgence every day of the year:

*]adoration of the Blessed Sacrament for at least one half hour (no. 3);

*]devout reading of sacred scriptures for at least one half hour (no. 50);

*]the devout performance of the Stations of the Cross (no. 63);

]The recitation of the Marian Rosary in a church or oratory, with members of the family, in a religious Community, or in a pious assosciation (no. 48) …

Here is a summary of the three conditions necessary for gainig a plenary indulgence (you can read a little more about it in depth at the following link )

. …A plenary indulgence can be gained only once a day. In order to obtain it, the faithful must, in addition to being in the state of grace:

—have the interior disposition of complete detachment from sin, even venial sin;

—have sacramentally confessed their sins;

—receive the Holy Eucharist (it is certainly better to receive it while participating in Holy Mass, but for the indulgence only Holy Communion is required);

—pray for the intentions of the Supreme Pontiff.

  1. It is appropriate, but not necessary, that the sacramental Confession and especially Holy Communion and the prayer for the Pope’s intentions take place on the same day that the indulgenced work is performed; but it is sufficient that these sacred rites and prayers be carried out within several days (about 20) before or after the indulgenced act. Prayer for the Pope’s intentions is left to the choice of the faithful, but an “Our Father” and a “Hail Mary” are suggested. One sacramental Confession suffices for several plenary indulgences, but a separate Holy Communion and a separate prayer for the Holy Father’s intentions are required for each plenary indulgence.

  2. For the sake of those legitimately impeded, confessors can commute both the work prescribed and the conditions required (except, obviously, detachment from even venial sin).

  3. Indulgences can always be applied either to oneself or to the souls of the deceased, but they cannot be applied to other persons living on earth.

God Bless you.


Just to be a little more precise, that last number 7 posted directly above was probably written with the intention of spurring us on to help the holy souls in Purgatory. There could be several exceptions where the indulgence gained is applicable to the holy souls only and not to the one gaining it. So far I know of one such exception, with it’s derivative partial indulgences; from the same Handbook of Indulgences :

From The Handbook of Indulgences, Norms And Grants
[1991 Catholic Book Publishing Company]:

**13. Coemeterii visitatio
Visiting a Cemetery **

An indulgence is granted the Christian faithful who devoutly visit a cemetery and pray, if only mentally, for the dead. This indulgence is applicable only to the souls in Purgatory. This indulgence is a plenary one from November 1 through November 8 and can be gained on each one of these days. On other days of the year this indulgence is a partial one.


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