MOST HOLY FATHER,
Francis Maraccani, Procurator General of the Society of Saint Francis de Sales, at the behest of Ángel Fernández Artime, Rector Major, manifests cordially to Your Holiness sentiments of obedience and filial reverence, and trustfully informs you that August 16, 2015 marks two centuries since at Murialdo, in the farmstead called "dei Becchi", near the village of Castelnuovo d'Asti, was born St. John Bosco to parents Francis Bosco and Margaret Occhiena, of peasant stock but of excellent conduct and distinguished piety. Shortly thereafter, he received holy baptism, the doorway to and the foundation of the Sacraments. He had a difficult childhood. Ordained a priest, he dedicated all his energies to the education of adolescents, founding the Salesian Society and, with the cooperation of St. Maria Domenica Mazzarello, also the Institute of the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians, to instruct youth in the field of work and in the Christian life.
To celebrate this happy event in a worthy manner, dedicating it with a Jubilee year to Saint John Bosco, father and teacher of the young, special sacred functions and various spiritual initiatives will be held from the 16th of August this year until the 16th of August, 2015 in order to promote a lively devotion to St. John Bosco among the faithful of the whole Catholic world so that, with his help, their conduct of life may become increasingly conformed to the divine Gospel. In order that the faithful Christians who take part in these celebrations may receive more abundantly the treasure of divine grace, the aforementioned petitioner implores the gift of a Jubilee indulgence.
On the 8th of August 2014
THE APOSTOLIC PENITENTIARY, by special mandate of His Holiness Pope Francis, gladly grants the Jubilee Year with a plenary indulgence attached which, under the usual conditions (sacramental confession, Eucharistic communion, and prayer for the intentions of the Supreme Pontiff) can be gained by members of the Salesian Family and all the faithful Christians who are sorry for their sins and motivated by charity.
They can also apply it in suffrage to the souls of the faithful departed in Purgatory, by taking part in a sacred function celebrated in honour of Saint John Bosco or at least spending some time in prayer before a relic or holy picture of the Saint, concluding with the Lord’s Prayer, the Creed, and prayers to the Our Lady and Saint John Bosco:
I. On January 31, 2015, the Solemnity of St John Bosco, and August 16, 2015, the day of the Bicentenary;
II. Every time they take part in a pilgrimage:
a) to the church consecrated to God and dedicated to St John Bosco at Castelnuovo Don Bosco, on “Colle Don Bosco” (which is the birthplace of the Saint);
b) to the church dedicated to Mary Help of Christians in Turin and elevated o the rank of Minor Basilica in 1911. St. John Bosco oversaw its construction; today it preserves his sacred remains and is, as it were, the spiritual centre of the entire Salesian Family.
The Christian faithful who are prevented by age or illness may also gain the Plenary Indulgence so long as they are sorry for their sins and have the intention of fulfilling the usual three conditions as soon as possible. They should spend time prayerfully before a picture of St John Bosco, and join spiritually in celebrations or jubilee visits or, should they be held back by any impediment, recite the prayers mentioned above, offering their suffering or difficulties in life.
Hence, to provide easy access to pastoral ministry in order to obtain divine mercy through the power of the Church, this Penitentiary urges Salesian priests, who have the necessary faculties for confessions, to offer themselves with a willing and generous spirit to celebrate the sacrament of Penance and often administer Holy Communion to the sick.
The present disposition will be valid for the whole Jubilee year of St. John Bosco, notwithstanding anything to the contrary.
S. E. R. Mauro Card. PIACENZA