Letter of the Major Penitentiary, Cardinal Mauro Piacenza, on the occasion of the Solemnity of All Saints and the Commemoration of the Faithful Departed, 2019.
When we hear the word "Church", or when we pronounce it in the Sunday profession of faith, what do we really think of? or when we pronounce it in our Sunday profession of faith, what do we really think of?
¿A where do our minds and hearts go?
What is, or rather who is, the Church? What is, or rather who is, the Church? What idea do we have of it?
The authentic answer to these simple but fundamental questions can only lead to the Augustinian reality of the total Christ, to the Church lead to the Augustinian reality of the total Christ, to the Church understood not only as a human reality, but in its divine-human identity. not only as a human reality, but in its divine-human identity. The Church is always Ecclesia de TrinitateTherefore, we must constantly therefore, we must constantly keep in mind its celestial dimension, both in relation to the Trinitarian Mystery relationship with the Trinitarian Mystery, and in particular with the Head who is Christ, as well as in the synchronic and diachronic Christ, as well as in the synchronic and diachronic embrace with all our saved brothers and sisters, who have already left this world.
Such a The Church's theandric reality is admirably expressed in the Liturgy, which in its wisdom which, in its wisdom, brings the Solemnity of All Saints closer to the commemoration of the faithful departed, making us of the faithful departed, making us almost perceive, through the warmth of the Liturgy and the clarity of the catechesis that derives from it, the present embrace of God and our brothers and sisters. of God and of our brothers and sisters.
On these holy days, both in personal reflection, those of us who are universally motivated by the universally motivated by the affectionate commemoration of our dearly departed loved ones, as well as in the custody of meditation and prayer. and in the custody of meditation and prayer, we are called to draw abundantly from the inexhaustible treasure of Communion, we are called to draw abundantly from the inexhaustible treasure of Communion, which has its own particular declension in the reality of Indulgence.
To cooperate with the participation in the Eucharist, with prayer, with penance and the practice of almsgiving, with the works of mercy, to the great work of Christ's mercy, to the great work of Redemption accomplished by Christ, means allowing oneself to be inserted by grace, with the help of one's own freedom, in the great work of Redemption accomplished by Christ. means allowing oneself to be inserted by grace, with the help of one's own freedom, in the very work of the Trinity, which, from the work of the Trinity itself, which, from creation to the end of time Escathonthe first covenant and the redemption wrought by the Son, calls all men to full communion with Him. the Son, calls all men to full communion with himself.
The indulgence is, analogically speaking, the "whole in the fragment", since in it the creatural, redemptive and eschatological dimensions are the creatural, the redemptive and the eschatological dimensions are summarized in it.
Drink of the Church's treasure of mercy during these holy days, through the pious exercise of the Indulgence pious exercise of the Indulgence, applicable to oneself or to a faithful departed, also means renewing one's faith through the sacrament of Reconciliation, sacramental Communion received with the proper dispositions and the profession of the Creed of the Church, together with the of the Creed of the Church, together with prayer according to the intentions of the Supreme Pontiff. Pontiff. With these simple and concrete gestures, each member of the faithful reaffirms his or her full communion with the Church, renewing his or her communion with the Church. communion with the Church, renewing his or her acceptance of all the spiritual and supernatural goods spiritual and supernatural goods that derive from this participation.
At At the same time, as in every human act, and even more so for acts that have a bearing on the religious sphere, doing so strengthens faith: humbly bending the religious sphere, doing so strengthens the faith: humbly bending one's knees in the confessional humbly bending one's knees in the confessional, confessing all sins with a contrite heart and imploring Divine and imploring the Divine Mercy, the faithful not only receives the supernatural grace of Reconciliation the supernatural grace of Reconciliation, but by this gesture he also reaffirms his own faith, seeing it thus faith, seeing it thus strengthened and fortified, objectively through grace and personally by virtue of the grace, and personally by virtue of the help of his or her freedom.
Therefore, let us therefore, let us go, and even run to the confessional in these holy days! Let us accept humbly and devoutly, joyfully and generously accept the gift of Plenary Indulgence and let us offer it, with great generosity, to our brothers and sisters who, after crossing the threshold of time, can no longer the threshold of time, can no longer do for themselves, but can still receive much of our charity. much from our charity. Thus, our relationship of love with them continues and is strengthened. strengthened.
Indulgence is an efficacious and accessible declension of faith in the accessible declension of faith in the communio sanctorumin the communion of saints, which gives a broad horizon to our earthly existence and reminds us our earthly existence and reminds us, with extraordinary efficacy, that our actions have an infinite value, both because they are human actions - and because they are not human actions. that our actions have an infinite value, both because they are human actions - and only man is capable of authentically free gestures - and because only man is capable of authentically free gestures - and also because, in this specific case, they are human actions, in this specific case, they are human actions that have a supernatural value.
Be always generous, but especially in these holy days, the availability of confessors; generous and good confessors; the generous and good listening and prayerful participation in this washing of regeneration of regeneration, which sends down a shower of grace on the Church, will have infinite merits before the throne of the Most High. the Church, will have infinite merits before the throne of the Most High. more merits can be acquired in hours and hours of confession than in many "organizational" meetings, whose usefulness and "organizational" meetings, whose usefulness and results we all know...! In these days, in the confessional, how many occasions of consolation, of encouragement, how many tears can be how many tears can be dried, as propitious occasions to be able to illustrate the reality of eternal life, to the reality of eternal life, to stimulate forgiveness, tenderness in the works of mercy, to make people understand the of mercy, to make us understand the meaning of the daily pilgrimage. Let us put our whole heart into the ministry of listening, consolation, guidance and consolation, guidance and forgiveness!
May the days that lie ahead of us be an authentic experience of spiritual renewal spiritual renewal, in which, by rediscovering the truth of our faith, declined also in the simplicity of the acts even in the simplicity of the acts suggested by the spiritual tradition, our hearts open to welcome, again and again, those gifts of grace that the Spirit always bestows on us. grace that the Spirit always bestows on the Church, certain that even the commitment that works of faith can that the commitment that the works of mercy can bring will also bear abundant fruits in our personal in our personal existence, in the life of the Church and for the good of the world. of the world. May the Blessed Virgin Mary Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of Mercy, Queen of All Saints, Gate of Heaven, sustain the untiring work of so many meritorious priests; be the Mediatrix of grace for the hearts of the faithful for whom she is the Advocate Advocate, and implore from divine Clemency the inestimable gift of the entry into Paradise of so many of our brothers and sisters. Paradise for so many of our brothers and sisters. Their happiness is our happiness! happiness!