Two Plenary Indulgences in one day?


I am hoping someone knows the answer to this. I attended mass this morning so I could receive Holy Communion as a condition for getting a Plenary Indulgence for the souls in Purgatory. I did fulfill the other requirements for this.

I planned on going to afternoon mass at another church which is also offering Adoration afterward mass. I understand I can receive Communion twice in one day, so I should be okay with that requirement. My question is can I get a plenary indulgence for myself, for the Adoration, seeing as the earlier indulgence was for a soul in Purgatory, and not for I? Or would that still go against getting two plenaries in one day?


You can only gain one plenary indulgence per day, unless you’re in danger of death.


Thanks, so I guess that means even though I did not take credit for the first one, as I gave to a soul in purgatory, the second one will just be a partial for me.


You normally can gain only one plenary indulgence per day, unless you’re in danger of death as semper-catholicus said. However, if you have the opportunity to receive Holy Communion everyday, then you can also gain a plenary indulgence everyday by reading the Bible everyday for at least a half-hour each day. The Bible reading can be done anywhere and anytime of the day. Of course, you also have to say at least one Our Father and one Hail Mary for the intentions of the Holy Father.

When you can gain a plenary indulgence everyday, you can reserve at least one day of the month for yourself, and then offer the plenary indulgences you gain for the rest of the month for the poor souls in purgatory. Imagine how many friends you will make by liberating so many souls in purgatory!

Although you reserve one plenary indulgence a month for yourself, you should try to gain partial indulgences for yourself also during the rest of the month because we often commit small sins (venial sins) even in one day. You can do this by wearing a scapular, praying the rosary, or saying one of the indulgenced prayers of the church. To see a list of indulgenced prayers, click this link:


Trust in the grace of God and know that prayer works


Nah, just give all those away to the souls in Purgatory also.
Because you’ll get a plenary at the point of your death anyway, either during last rites or if no priest is available, automatically if you habitually recite some prayers during your lifetime.
See section 12 of the Manual, “At the Point of Death.”

St. Therese also taught we should give all such benefits away and rely on God’s mercy for ourselves.


More then one partial indulgence can be gotten per day.

To gain indulgences, the sacrament of Reconciliation is necessary too. (edited to say) time span before or after the indulgence work, for Reconciliation, is 20 days according to the updated Manual of St Pope John Paul II. As to how many Plenary Indulgences this will cover , as the wording is only ‘several’ is not stated. I will ask a few religious and clergy and see if there is an acceptable answer to what ‘several’ means here. Holy Communion is required for each indulgence, as are works and praying for the intentions of Holy Father Pope Francis. If in a church or oratory the Lords Prayer and the Creed are to be recited.


Thanks for all the replies. Some good stuff learned. I’ll continue to apply my intentions to the poor souls in Purgatory as was suggested.


That paragraph appeared in the Apostolic Constitution, Indulgentiarum Doctrina, issued by Pope Paul VI in 1967. It appears as paragraph No. 18 under the “Norms” section. Link:

What bothers me is that the same paragraph does not appear in the Enchiridion of Indulgences issued in 1968, which basically revises the Norms issued in 1967. The new norms do not contain that paragraph. It merely stated that one can obtain the plenary indulgence for the moment of death, even if another plenary indulgence had already been acquired on the same day (Norms 24.2). Link:

So, I am in doubt whether that grant is still valid. Please post if you have better information.


I agree with your entire post except the one you said below:

Nowhere in the Enchiridion of Indulgences (1968) did I read about weekly sacramental confession. The Enchiridion simply said that “a single sacramental confession suffices for gaining several plenary indulgences” (Norms 28), but did not say the frequency. I think that it can be weekly, if desired, or as often as necessary to keep yourself in the state of grace, but no less frequently than once a month (just my own policy, not the Church’s).

Please post if you have better information. I, too, am learning.


Isn’t there an updated Enchiridion.


I am not aware of any. But if you happen to find one, please let me know. I posted a link to the 1968 edition in my post to Tis_Bearself above.


I am looking at the 1986 edition of the manual. It is the third edition. It was approved by St Pope John PaulII in 1985.
it is online here. And no doubt at the Vatican web site.

several plenary indulgences can be gained on the basis of a single sacramental confession but each indulgence needs its own Eucharistic Communion and prayers for the pope’s intentions.
It also says the three conditions may be carried out several days before or after the performance of the prescribed work. Thats Confession, Communion and pray for the popes intentions. Also if in a church or oratory you must include the Lord’s Prayer and the Creed unless specifically stated.
But it is preferred Communion and praying for the Popes intentions occur the day of the work done.

now onto what ‘several days’ means


I found this instead , it is
The Gift of the Indulgence from the Apostolic Penitentiary and lists several days as being within 20 days.

  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.

So the question is , how many is several indulgences and would 20 days cover each set of several indulgences

and can we really stay in a state of grace for 20 days !

the 8 days I was going on were the ones stipulated by Our Lady at Lourdes or Fatima.


“Several indulgences” means as many as permitted by the Norms, but not more than once a day, except at the point of death. In my opinion plenary indulgences can be gained daily; otherwise, they wouldn’t have to say, “but not more than once a day.” They added that qualification because plenary indulgences can easily be gained especially by those who are in the religious life.

“State of grace” means being free from unforgiven mortal sin. It is possible to be free from mortal sin for 20 days or more, even for months. But not venial sins. We rarely have a day without falling into some kind of small sin. Thus, the Bible says that even the just man falls seven times a day (Proverbs 24:16)

OK, that was a good document that you found. I read the document in the link that you provided. My interpretation is that the 20 days is a guide, based on the words “about 20”, or approximately 3 weeks. However, paragraph 6 also says that the confessors can commute the conditions. So, if you have the habit of making monthly confessions, you can make your monthly confession fulfill the conditions by asking the permission of your confessor to use monthly confession as your guide for receiving a plenary indulgence daily. In that way, it will certainly be legal, based on that document. If you don’t get that permission, then stay with 20 days max. Weekly confession is OK, too, but it is a little bit too much for me. I say it should be judged on a case to case basis. Some may need more frequent confession than others. Best to talk to your confessor.


Thankyou for your very considered response, my question is How many is several indulgences…

restated better below :slight_smile:


Maybe I didn’t understand the question very well. There are many ways of gaining plenary indulgence daily, as you are aware. One way is by reading the Bible for 1/2 hour every day. Another way is by praying the rosary every day in the church or at home with your family or in a prayer group. Another way is by a visit and adoration of the Blessed Sacrament for at least 1/2 hour every day. Etc. You can use a different method every day. Or you can use one method everyday for one week, a different method the second week, and back to the first method on the third week. It does not matter in what manner and what days you gain the plenary indulgence. As long as you are gaining the plenary indulgence on a daily basis (even skipping a day or two) the interval between each confession is still 20 days max, unless commuted by your confessor.


hmm Here is my question and its really one for clergy I guess. but

For the Sacrament of Reconciliation
the indulgence manual says that several days either side of the work can be up to 20 days
so we have a definition of several = 20

For the indulgences
we have the statement that one Sacrament of Reconcilliation will suffice for several Plenary Indulgences. I know that we can only get one a day unless we get last rites.
So in this case , what is the definition of several , in relation to several meaning how may indulgences per Confession.

Is it also several indulgences = 20 indulgences also. Or something different.

see what I mean?
I might ask the Bishop


It appears in the latest version of the Manual of Indulgences, which I bought from Amazon for my Kindle and consult daily. (2006 translation by USCCB of the 1999 current version, available from Amazon here.)

For those who do not have Kindle version, the Manual of Indulgences, 1999 Current version, is available here:

Section 12, “At the Point of Death” is on page 47/128 .

It is currently in force.

I really recommend that if you’re serious about indulgences, you don’t mess around with all the random pages on the Internet. Either use the free copy of the Manual posted by St. Theresa’s or, if you’re concerned about copyright “sins”, buy a Kindle copy or a hard copy. I find the Kindle copy very useful as Kindle now has a cloud reader app for my phone and I can just dial up the Manual on my phone any time I need to check on an indulgence at church or wherever.

Piling up little indulgences for oneself is kinda like Jansenism, which is why St. Therese didn’t think it was a good idea. As she said, we can never do enough to atone for our sins, better to do everything we can for other souls and then throw ourselves on God’s mercy.


It’s 20 days for a maximum of 20 Plenaries. It used to be 8 days but got extended to 20 and the Vatican kept the extension.

Some traditionalist priests will still tell you it’s 8 days.

I go with the 20 days. That’s confession twice a month, if you do the First Saturday confession and don’t suddenly commit any mortal sins that require you to go again. Twice a month seems like a reasonable amount.

You can still ask your bishop, but if he tells you 8 days then you’ll have to confess every week :slight_smile:

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit