13. Indulgences associated with the Passion and Death of our Lord

From the Manual on Indulgences, published 2006 by the USCCB, being a translation of the Enchiridion Indulgentiarum quarto editur.


A plenary indulgence is granted to the faithful who

§ 1 devoutly assist at the adoration of the Cross in the solenm liturgical action of Good Friday; or

§2 personally make the pious Way of the Cross, or devoutly unite themselves to the Way of the Cross while it is being led by the Supreme Pontiff and broadcast live on televi¬sion or radio.

In the pious exercise of the Way of the Cross, we recall anew the sufferings which our divine Redeemer endured while going from the praetorium of Pilate, where he was condemned to death, to Mount Calvary, where he died on the cross for our salvation.

Regarding the acquisition of the plenary indulgence, the following is prescribed:

1. The pious exercise must be made before stations of the Way of the Cross legitimately erected.
2. To erect the Way of the Cross, fourteen crosses are needed, to which it is customary to attach a picture or image representing the fourteen stations of Jerusalem.
3. According to common custom, the pious exercise consists of fourteen devotional readings, to which some vocal prayers are added. To make the Way of the Cross, however, it is sufficient to meditate devoutly on the Lord’s Passion and Death, and therefore reflection on the particular mysteries of the individual stations is not necessary.
4. Progression from one station to the next is required. If the pious exercise is made publicly, and moving from station to station by all participants is not possible without inconvenience, it is sufficient that at least the one conducting the Way of the Cross progress from station to station, while the others remain in their place.
S. Those legitimately impeded can acquire the same indulgence, if they spend some time, e.g., at least a quarter of an houç in reading and meditating on the Passion and Death of Our Lord Jesus Christ.
6. Equivalent to the pious exercise of the Way of the Cross, even with regard to obtaining the indulgence, are other pious exercises, approved by competent authority, which call to mind the memory of the Passion and Death of our Lord, likewise with the prescribed fourteen stations.
7. For those belonging to the Eastern Churches, where this pious exercise may not exist, the indulgence can be acquired by means of some other pious exercise in memory of the Passion and Death of our Lord Jesus Christ, accord¬ingly as each patriarch has established for his own faithful.