The Catholic practice of "selling" indulgences to sinners helped provoke the Protestant Reformafasting, performing acts of charity, or other actions. The average person would have to finish penance after death, in the form of suffering and pain; that penance might be lessened or avoided by an indulgence.
   Indulgences could be granted for going on a pilgrimage, engaging in a specified devotional practice, or contributing to a worthy cause such as endowing a church. The latter practice meant, in effect, that indulgences could be bought, and the "selling" of indulgences became a means of raising money for the church or its agents.
   A massive campaign to sell indulgences to finance the construction of St. Peter's in Rome provoked biting reactions from church critics. They denounced the sellers for making extravagant claims for the indulgences, even promising to release loved ones already in purgatory. Martin Luther, in the Ninety-five Theses, questioned the legitimacy of the idea itself, suggesting that indulgences could not relieve guilt. if they could, the pope should use them to empty purgatory for the sake of love, rather than money.
   At the Council of Trent, which opened in 1545, Catholic leadership tried to make reforms in the practice. However, the modified use of indulgences continues to the present day in the Roman Catholic Church.
   Further reading:
   ■ Alexius M. Lepicier, Indulgences: Their Origin, Nature, and Development (London: Kegan Paul, 1906)
   ■ Bernhard Lohse, Martin Luther, An Introduction to His Life and Work (Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1986)
   ■ Nicolaus Paulus, Indulgences as a Social Factor in the Middle Ages, trans. by J. Elliott Ross (New York: Devin-Adair, 1922).

Encyclopedia of Protestantism. . 2005.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Indulgences — • A remission of the temporal punishment due to sin, the guilt of which has been forgiven Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006. Indulgences     Indulgences      …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • INDULGENCES — Terme qui, à l’origine, désignait la remise d’une pénitence publique imposée par l’Église, pour une durée déterminée, après le pardon des péchés. À la suite d’une lente élaboration, la notion d’indulgence en est venue à signifier aujourd’hui une… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Indulgences — Indulgence (catholicisme) Pour les articles homonymes, voir Indulgence. Une indulgence accordée en 1521 dans le diocèse de Constance Dans l Ég …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Indulgences — At first indulgences were limited to 40 days, and were remissions of punishment and of sin and a specified quantity of penance. Purgatory came to be thought of as the place where penance was performed after life; a place in time, rather than… …   Dictionary of Medieval Terms and Phrases

  • indulgences — in dul·gence || ɪn dÊŒldÊ’É™ns n. act of giving in to desire; something which gratifies, luxury; leniency, tolerance; humoring, pampering; partial remission of punishment (Roman Catholicism) …   English contemporary dictionary

  • indulgences —  Индульгенции …   Вестминстерский словарь теологических терминов

  • Indulgences, Apostolic — • Those which the Roman pontiff, the successor of the Prince of the Apostles, attaches to the crosses, crucifixes, chaplets, rosaries, images, and medals which he blesses, either with his own hand or by those to whom he has delegated this faculty …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Apostolic Indulgences —     Apostolic Indulgences     † Catholic Encyclopedia ► Apostolic Indulgences     The indulgences known as Apostolic or Apostolical are those which the Roman pontiff, the successor of the Prince of the Apostles, attaches to the crosses,… …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Commerce des indulgences — Le commerce des indulgences vient de la possibilité dans l Église catholique romaine, d acheter des indulgences (du latin indulgere, « accorder ») c est à dire la rémission totale ou partielle devant Dieu de la peine temporelle encourue …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Si Léon X avait donné des indulgences à vendre aux moines augustins qui étaient en possession du déb… — Si Léon X avait donné des indulgences à vendre aux moines augustins qui étaient en possession du débit de cette marchandise il n’y aurait point de protestants. См. Мала искра велики вещи сожигает …   Большой толково-фразеологический словарь Михельсона (оригинальная орфография)

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.