August 2 - Forgiveness of Assisi Day

(excerpts from Franciscan Sources)

In the Franciscan Sources we read that St. Francis awoke one night in 1216 at the Porziuncola and an inspiration stronger than usual prompted him to arise and go into the little chapel. He had been praying when suddenly the dark interior seemed illumined by the light of a million candles.

Jesus and Mary appeared in the midst of a dazzling cloud of angels, and he heard a voice that fell like music on his soul. “What do you wish me to do to help poor sinners?”. Francis hardly knew how to answer, but suddenly the words came tumbling out and he asked the Lord :"O God," he said, “although I m a great sinner, I beseech You to grant a full pardon of all sins to all who, having repented and confessed their sins, shall visit this church.”

And Jesus said to him: “Francis, you ask much, but you are worthy of greater things, and greater things you shallhave”. Our Lord then granted Francis' request and told him to go to His Vicar for ratification of the indulgence.

Francis marched off to see Pope Honorius III and the Pope, after having carefully listened to him granted the indulgence. The pope asked him: “For how many years do you want this indulgence?" Francis said,"I ask not for years but for souls." On August 2, 1216, with joy in the presence of the Bishops of Umbria, in reference to this indulgence Francis announced to the people who had gathered in the church of the Porziuncola: “Brethren, I want to send you all to Heaven!”.

Initially, the indulgence was granted only to the church of Porziuncola: over time, the indulgence was extended to all Franciscan churches and later to all the parish churches. On August 2, we celebrate the “Forgiveness of Assisi Day” in the Church of Santa Maria degli Angeli, Assisi, and \also in all the parishes and Franciscan churches.

From noon August 1st to midnight of the following day, the indulgence will be granted. It is granted to all those who confess their sins, receive the Eucharist and pray for the pope


(for oneself or for a departed soul)

  • Sacramental confession to be in God’s grace (during the eight days before or after);

  • Participation in the Holy Mass and Eucharist;

  • Visit either the church of Porziuncola in Assisi, or any Catholic Church, profess your Faith, in order to reaffirm one’s own Christian identity;

  • Say the OUR FATHER, in order to reaffirm the dignity as child of God that one received in Baptism;

  • A prayer for the Pope’s intention, in order to reaffirm one’s membership in the Church, of which the Roman Pontiff is the foundation and sign of visible unity.