Brisbane Oratory News

Preparing for Advent

Next Sunday begins the season of advent. Advent sometimes gets lost amongst the commercialisation of Christmas during December. Advent is a penitential season filled with preparation and expectation for the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ at Christmas celebrated from Vespers on the 24th December to Candlemas on the 2nd February. One way we can reclaim the spirit of advent is having an advent wreath in our homes which can be used during times of family prayer.

Purgatory and November Indulgences

During November the Church turns our minds to the suffering souls in purgatory. Purgatory is a great mercy from God allowing those who have died in friendship with God, but who’s are still due temporal punishment, to enter into heaven. Those souls who depart this life in the state of grace but with venial sin, or who have not paid their debt of temporal punishment due to those sins which guilt or eternal punishment has been forgiven, go to purgatory for a time. It is said that the fires of purgatory are the same as the fires of hell, except in purgatory they are temporary, and pain in purgatory is most great. While in purgatory, souls are unable to merit for themselves, but since we are still on earth we can offer up sufferings on their behalf to expiate their temporal punishment to make their time in purgatory quicker. The Church in her mercy also has indulgences, and these indulgences open up the treasure of Christ’s grace to remove some or all of the temporal punishment due to sin. For this reason we ought to strive to gain indulgences and offer them for the Holy Souls, who will surely remember us when they enter into heavenly paradise.

The Apostolic Penitentiary announces modifications to the Plenary Indulgence for the souls in purgatory during the month of November this year. The usual conditions apply unless stated otherwise:

  • The Plenary Indulgence for those who visit a cemetery can be obtained by anyone who visits a cemetery, even if only mentally, on any day in November, and devoutly prays for the faithful departed.
  • The Plenary Indulgence attached to All Souls Day can be obtained any other day of the month by devoutly visiting a church or an oratory, along with the recitation of the Our Father and the Creed.
  • For anyone who cannot leave their home for serious reasons, they can obtain the Plenary Indulgence by uniting themselves spiritually to other members of the faithful with the intention of complying as soon as possible with the three usual conditions, before an image of Jesus or the Blessed Virgin Mary, recite pious prayers for the deceased or occupy themselves in considered reading of one of the Gospel passages proposed by the liturgy of the deceased, or perform a work of mercy by offering to God the sorrows and hardships of their own lives.

What are the usual conditions for an indulgence?

  • Be in a state of grace by the completion of the work or prayer
  • Detachment from sin, even venial; if lacking the indulgence is partial
  • Holy Communion (20 days before or after the indulgenced act)
  • Prayers for the intentions of the Pope (20 days before or after the indulgenced act). One Our Father and one Hail Mary is sufficent
  • Sacramental Confession (20 days before or after the indulgenced act). One confession with the intention of gaining all the indulgences we can is sufficient for all indulgences during the period.

Christ the King: Consecration & Plenary Indulgence

On Sunday 25 of October we will celebrate the Feast of Our Lord Jesus Christ the King. This Feast reminds us that all people, the baptised and non-baptised, are subject to Christ who is the King of all mankind. On this Feast Day the Church grants a plenary indulgence, under the usual conditions, for those who assist publicly in the Act of Consecration of the Human Race to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. It is fitting that this day falls one week before the Queensland State election and is a good reminder that as Christ is the King of mankind, all political powers ought to be subject to Christ and his laws. A nation or state cannot flourish unless it follows the laws of Christ and his rule. Our families and even ourselves as individuals are subject to the rule of Christ and we should seek him to be the King of our hearts. The Fathers and Brothers exhort all faithful Catholics to offer, or renew, their consecration to the Sacred Heart of our Sovereign Lord, and we invite you to join us in making the public Act of Consecration of the Human Race to the Sacred Heart of Jesus at Vespers and Benediction at 5:00pm on Sunday. You can make a booking for Vespers and Benediction here.

What is an indulgence?

An indulgence is the remission of temporal punishment due to sin. There are two kinds of punishments attached to certain sins. Mortal sins have an eternal punishment which is completly removed through Sacramental Confession. All sins also have a certain temporal punishment attached to them, depending on our degree of sorrow, some of this temporal punishment can remain after Confession. Good works help remit any temporal punishment still affecting us, and temporal punishment left when we die is expiated in purgatory. However, indulgences are an application of the merits of Christ to our temporal punishment. A plenary indulgence removes all temporal punishment due to sin.

What are the usual conditions for an indulgence?

  • Be in a state of grace by the completion of the work or prayer
  • Detachment from sin, even venial; if lacking the indulgence is partial
  • Holy Communion (20 days before or after the indulgenced act)
  • Prayers for the intentions of the Pope (20 days before or after the indulgenced act). One Our Father and one Hail Mary is sufficent
  • Sacramental Confession (20 days before or after the indulgenced act). One confession with the intention of gaining all the indulgences we can is sufficient for all indulgences during the period.

Rosary Novena of Reparation

We invite you to join with us in a nine day praying of the rosary for the intention of making reparation for, and requesting protection from the effects of, all desecration of the Most Holy Eucharist and sacrilege against the Mass. This novena is to begin on Monday October 5, run through the feast of the Holy Rosary on October 7, and conclude on October 13 (anniversary of the last apparition at Fatima). 


It is well known that growing interest in the occult leads to increased involvement in satanic groups, and that the most serious consequences can befall individuals without their necessarily being aware of what their involvement can bring about. It is our duty to pray for those caught up in such activities, even if they are fully aware of and fully intend the desecration, sacrilege and blasphemy to which they lend their voices. We pray also for protection from the intended effects for which satanic ceremonies are often planned, the radical overturning of the good of society in general and that of the Church in particular. 


Let us be encouraged by the example of Bl Bartolo Longo, who in his youth became involved in a satanic group, but later converted, and devoted the rest of his life to the spread of devotion to the rosary, knowing its great power. 

Ember Days

“Holy Cross, Lucy, Ashes, Day of the Annointed,are when the ember days are appointed.”

Four times a year, in the traditional calendar, we celebrate ember days which fall on Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday with the change of the seasons. These ancient days go back to at least the 5th century, and traditionally are days of penance, fast and partial abstainance from meat (meaning meat at the main meal only).

While the observation of these days are no longer mandatory, it is a good and pious thing to voluntarily observe them. The purpose of these “mini-lents” are to pray, fast, and thank God for the gifts He gives us through nature such food and shelter. This week we have the September Ember Days, falling after the Feast of the Holy Cross as the rhyme above reminds us.

Ember Wednesday September 2020