Two Plenary Indulgences in one day?


I do this. i lived very close to a rural cemetery for some time. It was a great reminder. Sometimes people I have known along the way of life, but lost touch with, come to mind, so I ask for the indulgence to be for them if they are not with us anymore.

it is a spiritual work of mercy too.


Thankyou for your considered response Tisbearself

I agree with the definition of several for the days between confessions. Several is defined as 20 in the Vatican link I posted above.

We just don’t have the meaning of what ‘several’ = for the amount of indulgences we can get for each confession if we go to confession every 20 days.
The manual says several indulgences for one confession.

I usually go to confession weekly, My indian Priests say it gives us such graces and to go as much as possible, (unless there is an issue with scruples. )


40 plenary and unlimited partials. Because it’s 20 days before and after. Very generous.


Isn’t it within 20 days, as in a 40 day period? I know that confession can be after the indulged act OR before. I might be wrong though


I’ve met people who argue for 40 days on the basis you said.
I think that’s pushing it because

  • confessions are readily available in my area, a person could potentially go every week
  • some priests will still tell you “8 days” so 20 days seems like an extension to me as it is, and I’m not going to push the limits when I’m trying to make a good effort and get full plenaries
  • many people would express doubt that one could stay in a state of grace for 20 days much less 40 days, without going to confession, and you need to be in the state of grace when you do the indulgenced work.

But if somebody else really feels they cannot get to confession oftener than 40 days, or don’t think they need to go oftener than 40 days, it’s between them and God. I don’t argue with them about it. They can always ask their priest.


Thankyou for taking the time to respond Thrstypirate.

That is very creative thinking! The 20 days for confession is 20 days before or 20 days after.

but what acts are you insulting ? (shock horror face)


Sorry, “indulged” which autocorrected.


At times, I think I might be insulting God with my quest for indulgences for my dead relatives. :slight_smile: Auto correct gets me every time. I really dislike it.


I may be paranoid, but I feel that autocorrect tends to make pretty aggressive changes toward religious words in general.


First of all, thank you for the link, which gives the 1999 edition of the Enchiridion. It is the fourth edition of the 1968 edition. Like the 1968 edition, the grant at the point of death in the 1999 edition does not appear in the Norms section (Norms 18, p. 22) of the Enchiridion. However, it appears in the Grants section at the location you indicated (Sect. 12, p.47). So, I went back to the old 1968 Edition and started looking for the same paragraph in the Grants portion. And here I found it there as well. If you still have the link I provided earlier, you will find it under “Other Grants of Indulgences”, #28, pp. 27-28. I thought earlier that they removed the paragraph altogether since it was no longer in the Norms section. (It was in the Norms section of the 1967 Apostolic Constitution by Pope Paul VI). I did not know that they merely moved it to the Grants section. So, now I agree. The plenary indulgence at the point of death is still current. You win.:slight_smile: And thanks again for pointing that out.

I’m thinking now, that it makes it much easier for Catholics to bypass purgatory, right? Just have the habit of praying everyday, and continue keeping yourself in the state of grace. On the other hand, it may not be that easy because Norm 20 (p. 22) in the 1999 Edition still has the requirement to be free of all attachment to sin, even venial sin, in addition to the three conditions (sacramental confession, Holy Communion, and praying for the intentions of the Holy Father). That requirement is still in effect. Now, the plenary indulgence at the point of death given in Section 12 (p.47) does not require these three conditions, but is granted to the faithful “who are duly disposed.” I suppose that means you are duly disposed when you are free of all attachment to sin, including venial sin. Many people find that requirement hard to satisfy. Any thoughts?


It is my understanding that more than one plenary indulgence may be obtained on August 2.


OK, let’s say you’re not totally free of attachment to sin when you die and get the deathbed plenary (from the priest or not). So you get a partial. It’s some time off your purgatory in any event. And likely just as much as you would have gotten by earning some indulgences for yourself the day before, if not more.

Meanwhile if you spent your life praying and giving indulgences to the poor souls then presumably a number of them made it to Heaven where they pray for you. (Some believe they can pray for you even in Purgatory, although this is disputed.)

Wouldn’t you like to have dozens or hundreds or even thousands of souls praying for you when you die? I find that a more comforting thought than me trying to get little indulgences for myself all day long while worrying if I’m still too attached to my sins.


That web page refers to indulgence grants from 1909 and 1911 which have been superseded by the 1968 manual and subsequent versions.
Stuff like this is why I say don’t look at websites. Often the person putting together the website is not very well versed in current indulgence practice, or perhaps they don’t accept post-Vatican II enchiridions.

You can still get a plenary on the Portiuncula day (see section 33, Visiting Sacred Places) but afaik you can’t get it multiple times on that day. Before 1968, that used to be the indulgence somebody mentioned on here where people would go to a church and then go in and out of the church door many times trying to get another plenary for each time they entered the church, like if you had 20 relatives you’d go out and in again 20 times. Seems a bit silly.

Also, see this from


Except for those which the Church says is applicable only to the poor souls in purgatory, such as the visit to the cemetery from Nov. 1 to Nov. 8, plenary indulgences gained by the faithful are gained for themselves. Of course they may also be offered to the poor souls by way of suffrage, but we gain them primarily for ourselves. But what is the point of this if, as you say, it is better to just offer all indulgences we earn to the poor souls? Why doesn’t the Church just make a decree that all indulgences earned here below should be applicable only to the poor souls, and not for ourselves?

I think the reason is this. Indulgences remove a part or all of the temporal punishments due to our sins. I will now use an analogy that I know is not perfect, but will hopefully explain my point. Let me just say that I happen to break ten windows of my neighbor while I am living. (Breaking the windows represent my sins.) Although I apologized and was forgiven, I am still under obligation to fix those broken windows, right? (That represents the temporal punishments due to the moral damages caused by my sins.) Now, if I can somehow repair those windows while I am still living by earning indulgences, then I would rather do that than offer all my indulgences to repair other people’s damages while I leave my own broken windows unfixed. If you want to do that, it’s OK. But that does not sit well with me. In fact, I do the same thing with respect to my earnings. I don’t donate all my earnings to the poor, and leave the care of myself to Divine Providence. I’d rather donate some of my earnings, but save some for myself as well. And that’s how I look at indulgences. I want to use them to make reparation for the moral damages caused by my own sins. I am willing to donate some, but also leave some for myself. I guess this is the reason why the Church teaches that indulgences that are granted to us, not exclusively for the poor souls, are for our use, but may be applied to the poor souls by way of suffrage.

Note: I am not asking everyone to do it my way. It is just a purely personal preference. And sure, I will continue to earn and apply all my plenary indulgences earned every day of the month for the poor souls, except for one day in the month which is reserved for me. I will still have many friends in Heaven in the end.


Yes. Please let me know what he says.

By the way, I have been reading the texts of the Enchiridion. It says that the confessor can commute the conditions for those who are impeded or find it impossible to fulfill them. So, it may not be easy to ask for an interval between confessions longer than 20 days, if the reason is just for convenience. I thought I’d mention that to you.


I give all my indulgences to Jesus through Mary to be used for the poor souls. When a person consecrates themself to Mary, they promise to do this, and I say two Morning Offering prayers each day in which I express the wish to “earn every indulgence and merit I can and offer them together with myself to Mary Immaculate that she might use them to accomplish Jesus’ designs upon the world.” If Mary and Jesus think I need some merit applied to me then they are free to decide that. They have an endless supply of goodies to pass out.

I have less than zero interest in racking up brownie points for myself, like God is some accountant. I’d fall short anyway, as my puny efforts could never compensate for my sins. I want to help souls, like the Fatima children and St. Padre Pio and St. Nicholas of Tolantino, and many others. I feel called to do it and I want to do it. I especially want to help souls who most need help, like they have no one to pray for them.

Fr. Heilman and Susan Tassone have recently promoted ways of helping the Holy Souls through indulgence practice. I was already doing it before I joined Fr. Heilman’s prayer group but his method got me much more organized and spiritually it does me a lot of good to feel I can help my dead relatives. All my loved ones are dead. And from there I branched out to praying for deceased and living friends, benefactors, random people I meet, celebrities, strangers on the Internet, etc. It’s done me nothing but good. And I hope it’s done some souls good. Even if it helps just one soul then that would be great.

The Church doesn’t care if you use your indulgences for yourself, your dead loved ones or the Holy Souls. I think a lot of us are motivated to help a dead loved one get to heaven. You can use your indulgences how you wish, but I’ll continue to use mine on the deceased, and put all my trust in God to get me to Heaven. If He thinks I need purgatory time then I hope I would “submit with confidence to His holy will” as St Faustina said, and that others would pray for me.


Your way is a good way. In fact, it is heroic that you ask God to apply all your earned indulgences to others. However, I just want to clarify that the intention to apply a partial or plenary indulgence for oneself is not inconsistent with the Act of Consecration that many Catholics also make. Here, for example, is an Act of Consecration to Mary that I pray every day:

​I choose thee this day, O Mary, in the presence of the whole court of Heaven, as my Mother and Queen. I give and consecrate to you as your slave, my body and my soul, my interior and exterior possessions, including the merits of my past, present and future good actions, allowing you the full right to dispose of me and of all that belongs to me, without any exception whatsoever, according to your good pleasure for the greater glory of God in time and in eternity. Amen.

​Saying this prayer does not mean that one is already giving up the opportunity to earn partial or plenary indulgence for oneself. It only means that we are giving Mother Mary the right to apply even those indulgences that we have earned for ourselves, to others “according to her good pleasure and for the greater glory of God.”


Fr. Heilman has a prayer group specifically dedicated to obtaining indulgences for the Holy Souls? I’m very interested in this, but my internet search skills have failed me. Do you have a link that you’d be willing to share?


He does these devotions as part of his regular prayer group activities, usually focusing on them in November, the month of the Holy Souls. Some people continue the prayers all year even while his group goes on to pray for other things. Here are explanations of the method.


Very interesting! Thank you for this :slight_smile:

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