DECREE ISSUED BY THE APOSTOLIC PLENITENTIARY
Wishing to propose the theme of the family for the consideration of the entire Church, John Paul II, of venerable memory, established that the "World Meeting of Families" be celebrated every three years. He was motivated above all by the pastoral concern that this topic be illustrated through deeper study; that the institution of the human family be defended from the errors and bad customs that are spreading today; and that it be entrusted with prayer to God by whom, as Creator, the family itself was founded, and by whom, as Author of the supernatural order, the marriage of the baptized was raised to the dignity of a sacrament.
The Supreme Pontiff Benedict XVI, making his Predecessor's opinion his own, has arranged to be present at the conclusion of the "Fifth World Meeting of Families" which will take place this year in Valencia, Spain, from 1 to 9 July. He raises prayers to the Most Holy Trinity so that a great benefit for the Church will result from it, especially through the study of the theme assigned to it: the family, the place of life and love, the domestic Church in which parents pass on to their children the priceless gift of faith.
The Holy Father, therefore, wholeheartedly supporting the convocation of the World Meeting in Valencia, has willingly established that the gift of the Plenary Indulgence be conceded to the faithful on the conditions indicated below; and he has the deep desire that many of them will take part in it from every part of the world, that they will participate fervently and with attention to the various events and religious celebrations for the family that will be taking place and that, having returned to their homes strengthened by God's grace, they will generously dedicate themselves to conforming their own families and those of their neighbour to the holy rules of the Gospel. May they also offer the example of a life adorned with the Christian virtues and rich in works of piety and charity, under the protection of the Blessed Virgin Mary and of St Joseph, her most chaste spouse, whom God's mysterious plan entrusted with building that family in which Our Lord Jesus Christ, made man, "grew and became strong, filled with wisdom; and the favour of God was upon him" (Lk 2: 40).
Consequently, the Supreme Pontiff concedes the Plenary Indulgence to members of the faithful on the usual conditions (sacramental Confession, Eucharistic Communion and prayers for the Supreme Pontiff's intentions) who, in a spirit of total detachment from any sin, take part devoutly in some of the celebrations for the "Fifth World Meeting of Families" and in its solemn conclusion.
The same Plenary Indulgence will also be granted on the same conditions to all other members of the faithful who are unable to take part in this event, on the days on which it is taking place and on the last day, if, united in spirit and thinking of the faithful present in Valencia, they recite at home with the family the "Our Father", the "Creed", and other devout prayers to invoke from Divine Mercy the above-mentioned goals.
The present Decree is valid during this event. Despite any disposition to the contrary.
Given in Rome, at the Apostolic Penitentiary, 15 June 2006, on the Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ.
Cardinal James Francis Stafford
Fr Gianfranco Girotti, O.F.M.