How Pilgrims May Venerate Saint Jude’s Relics 

Several additional banners, separate from the catechetical banners and smaller (33 x 96 inches), will be placed strategically along the veneration route and will state the following.
How to Venerate Saint Jude’s Relics

Please join the viewing line, observing silence as you patiently wait your turn to reach Saint Jude.  If you are disabled or infirm and cannot stand in line, please walk down the center aisle to the reliquary and inform one of the ushers, who will take you to the reliquary.

Each person may take only a moment (less than ten seconds) in front of the relics.  This keeps the line moving and ensures minimal wait times for the thousands coming today.  

No photos are permitted during your time in front of the Saint.  Your veneration time is exclusively for that: veneration.  After doing so, you may step aside and take a photo while the next pilgrims are venerating.


Because your time in front of the relics is limited, please do your praying while you wait in line.  You will have no time to do so at the reliquary.


You are encouraged to touch the reliquary display case.  In every instance where Scripture mentions relics, two things occur: 

    1. There is always healing.
    2. Touch is how the healing comes about.

You are also encouraged to touch your objects of devotion (rosaries, medals, crosses, wedding bands, etc.) to bless them and make them into third-class relics.  You may also touch pictures of family members and friends to invoke Saint Jude’s intercession.  If you have your objects in a bag, removing them is unnecessary.  Touch the bag, and the blessing transfers to all the objects you desire to be blessed.


Since no photographs of the reliquary are permitted during your veneration time, various images and items of devotion are available at the Souvenirs and Resources Table.  You may wish to obtain these before getting in line to touch them to the reliquary. 

May the Apostle of the Impossible, Saint Jude Thaddeus, obtain for you every good gift.  May you and all those you love experience his holy friendship and intercession.

Special Plenary Indulgence for St. Jude Relics Issued by the Vatican

What is a Plenary Indulgence?

Explaining a plenary indulgence requires clarifying what sin is and what it does.

Two things occur when we sin:

  1. We incur guilt.
  2. Our soul undergoes deformity.

Sacramental Confession removes the guilt (#1). However, the deformity (#2) remains. A person’s heart is changed when it sins: sin deforms it. A deformed heart must be reformed in God’s image and likeness before entering Heaven. Heaven is, by definition, the realm of the saints. No non-saints exist in Heaven; every soul in Heaven is a saint.

Herein is the difficulty. Of those people you have known who have already died, how many were you certain left the world as saints?  Most know very few, if any.

Yet we are told in the Letter to the Hebrews that no one can see the Lord without possessing holiness (Hebrews 12:14). That is why Purgatory exists: it is a state of purgation whereby a soul is purified through suffering so that it may enter God’s presence in Heaven. That the saved may need purification—and are aided by the prayers of the living—is confirmed in 2 Maccabees 12:45: “He made atonement for the dead, that they might be delivered from their sin.”

A plenary indulgence is an act by the Pope whereby he uses his authority as the successor of Saint Peter to declare the removal of one’s accrued purgation to be spent in Purgatory (an instance of the papal “power of the keys” described in Matthew 16:18-19). A Catholic who gains a plenary indulgence receives a blank slate in terms of Purgatory up to the moment of attaining it.

The Conditions to Receive the Plenary Indulgence

Venerate the relics of St. Jude. There is no set way this needs to occur.  Inside the Church where the relics are displayed, or at least someone on the grounds where they are present, say a prayer of your choosing (a formal prayer—such as an Our Father—or one made up by you) or make an act of veneration (e.g., touching the glass of the display case or making the Sign of the Cross).  Please see the next section for those who cannot physically be present.


Pray for the Pope. Reciting one Our Father and one Hail Mary satisfies this condition.


Receive the Sacrament of Confession within twenty days of visiting the relics.


Receive Holy Communion within the same twenty days while free from grave sin.


Resolve to end all relationships with sin, even venial (i.e., non-mortal) sin. This condition is by far the most difficult and requires explaining.  It entails making the decision that you will never sin again.  This does not mean you lose the indulgence if you sin again.  Once gained, an indulgence cannot be lost.  However, it requires the decision in the heart to remove any ongoing relationship or dependency with sin.  Examining the following examples of sins that often escape our attention will help illustrate this point.  

      • Lying (including “white” lies).
      • Theft (including copyright theft).
      • The use of blasphemy (using the Lord’s name or referring to what is holy irreverently) or accepting it.
      • The use of contraception.
      • Holding a “pro-choice” view towards pre-born babies (e.g., tolerating abortion within one’s heart) and refusing to give it the moral importance it deserves (e.g., at the polling booth).
For Those for Whom Visiting the Relic is Not Possible Due to Serious Inconvenience
Persons of old age, the sick, and all who are unable to leave their home for a serious reason (e.g., travel distance) may likewise gain the plenary indulgence after fulfilling condition #5 above and conditions #2-4 “as soon as possible” and fulfilling the additional condition of “joining themselves spiritually to Saint Jude’s holy pilgrimage and offering their prayers, sufferings, and inconveniences to our merciful God.”
May One Obtain a Plenary Indulgence on Behalf of Someone Else?
A plenary indulgence may be obtained for oneself, offered for the soul of someone already deceased (or for the dead in general), but it cannot be applied to another still living.
How Often May One Obtain a Plenary Indulgence?
Once a day.