Skip Navigation Links
Catholic News
Special Reports
Google Plus
RSS Feeds
Daily Catholic Question

What is the meaning behind the ‘Fisherman’s Rod’ and indulgences?

To answer your question, I called Father Cyprian Berens, O.F.M., who spent some years as a confessor at the Basilica of St. John Lateran in Rome.

Father Cyprian told me that until the time of Pope Paul VI, there was attached to the doors of all the confessionals in the four major basilicas a rod that looked something like a fishing pole.

Confessors in these basilicas were able to grant an indulgence to anyone who asked for it by kneeling outside the confessional and waiting for a tap on the head or shoulders with the rod.

Under Pope Paul VI, there was a complete revision of indulgences and a new Enchiridion of Indulgences was published.

Click here for the rest of today's answer

Sunday, October 27, 2013
Daily Catholic Question for 10/26/2013 Daily Catholic Question for 10/28/2013

Marie-Rose Durocher: Canada was one diocese from coast to coast during the first eight years of Marie-Rose Durocher’s life. Its half-million Catholics had received civil and religious liberty from the English only 44 years before. When Marie-Rose was 29, Bishop Ignace Bourget became bishop of Montreal. He would be a decisive influence in her life. 
<p>He faced a shortage of priests and sisters and a rural population that had been largely deprived of education. Like his counterparts in the United States, he scoured Europe for help and himself founded four communities, one of which was the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary. Its first sister and reluctant co-foundress was Marie-Rose. </p><p>She was born in a little village near Montreal in 1811, the 10th of 11 children. She had a good education, was something of a tomboy, rode a horse named Caesar and could have married well. At 16, she felt the desire to become a religious but was forced to abandon the idea because of her weak constitution. At 18, when her mother died, her priest brother invited her and her father to come to his parish in Beloeil, not far from Montreal. For 13 years she served as housekeeper, hostess and parish worker. She became well known for her graciousness, courtesy, leadership and tact; she was, in fact, called “the saint of Beloeil.” Perhaps she was too tactful during two years when her brother treated her coldly. </p><p>As a young woman she had hoped there would someday be a community of teaching sisters in every parish, never thinking she would found one. But her spiritual director, Father Pierre Telmon, O.M.I., after thoroughly (and severely) leading her in the spiritual life, urged her to found a community herself. Bishop Bourget concurred, but Marie-Rose shrank from the prospect. She was in poor health and her father and her brother needed her. </p><p>She finally agreed and, with two friends, Melodie Dufresne and Henriette Cere, entered a little home in Longueuil, across the Saint Lawrence River from Montreal. With them were 13 young girls already assembled for boarding school. Longueuil became successively her Bethlehem, Nazareth and Gethsemani. She was 32 and would live only six more years—years filled with poverty, trials, sickness and slander. The qualities she had nurtured in her “hidden” life came forward—a strong will, intelligence and common sense, great inner courage and yet a great deference to directors. Thus was born an international congregation of women religious dedicated to education in the faith. </p><p>She was severe with herself and by today’s standards quite strict with her sisters. Beneath it all, of course, was an unshakable love of her crucified Savior. </p><p>On her deathbed the prayers most frequently on her lips were “Jesus, Mary, Joseph! Sweet Jesus, I love you. Jesus, be to me Jesus!” Before she died, she smiled and said to the sister with her, “Your prayers are keeping me here—let me go.” </p><p>She was beatified in 1982.</p> American Catholic Blog It is in them [the saints] that Christian love becomes credible; they are the poor sinners’ guiding stars. But every one of them wishes to point completely away from himself and toward love…. The genuine saints desired nothing but the greater glory of God’s love… <br />—Hans Urs von Balthasar

Your Imperfect Holy Family

Praying for You
To pray the rosary is to spend time with Jesus and Mary.

Share the joy of a special occasion by sending a Catholic Greetings e-card!

For the one to be baptized, godparents represent the Christian Catholic community, the Church.

It's coming! Encourage your neighbors to celebrate the Christian aspects of Halloween with a Catholic Greetings e-card.

Blessed John Paul
Today the Church honors Blessed Pope John Paul II. Remember his legacy in this Year of Faith.

Come find us at: Facebook | St. Anthony Messenger magazine Twitter | American Catholic YouTube | American Catholic

An Site from the Franciscans and Franciscan Media Copyright © 1996 - 2015