Doctor Francisco de Sande
[Endorsed: “September 12, 1579. To the president of the Indias. Let it be filed with the other letter, and put away.”]
To all the faithful of Christ who view these present letters, health and apostolic blessing:
With solicitude, as is the duty of our pastoral office, for the health of the Lord’s flock entrusted by divine arrangement to our unworthy care, we willingly invite the faithful of that flock, all and singular, to visit churches and perform pious and meritorious works, in order that with the aid of divine grace, through spiritual largesses, indulgences (namely), and the pardoning of sins, they may the more easily reach the joys of everlasting happiness. For in the Indias, China, and the Philippine Islands, we desire that the churches already founded, or to be founded within the next ten years, and each one thereof belonging to the monasteries or houses of the discalced brethren known as the Order of Minors of St. Francis  of Observance be held in due veneration by the faithful of Christ themselves—that, frequenting them with befitting reverence, and flocking thither to those churches with greater readiness for the sake of devotion, they thereby may find themselves more fruitfully refreshed through the bestowal of heavenly grace. Therefore, relying on the mercy of Almighty God and the authority of his blessed apostles Peter and Paul, we mercifully in the Lord grant and bestow a plenary indulgence and remission of all their sins, on all the faithful of Christ of either sex, who, truly penitent and confessed each year, visit devoutly the aforesaid churches, or any of them, on the first and second day of the month of August, as well as the feasts of St. Francis, St. Anthony of Padua, St. Clare, St. Louis, and St. Bernardine; and these during their visit shall, from the first vespers to sunset of those days and feasts, pour forth pious prayers to God for the exaltation of Holy Mother Church, the uprooting of heresies, and the conversion of the peoples of those regions to the Catholic faith. These presents are to hold for all times. But, as it would be difficult to have these present letters carried to all and singular the places where needed, we desire, and by our apostolic authority decree, that to copies of them bearing the seal of any person in ecclesiastical rank, the same respect shall be paid as would be given to the originals themselves, were they shown. Given at Rome, at St. Peter’s, under the seal of the Fisherman, on the fifteenth day of November, one thousand five hundred and seventy-eight, the seventh year of our pontificate.
Documents of 1579-82
Decree regulating the foundation
of monasteries. Felipe II;
Aranjuez, May 13, 1579.