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Jubilee Year of Mercy


by Fr Duncan McVicar on 24/05/2015 -

Pope Francis formally announced the Extraordinary Jubilee Year of Mercy during Solemn Vespers this evening in St. Peter’s basilica. The Bull of Indiction, through which the announcement was made, was presented before the Holy Door of the basilica to a representative group of heads of the dicasteries of the Holy See. The Jubilee will open on the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, December 8th, and end on the Feast of Christ the King on November 20th, 2016. The Pope explains in the Bull it is his “burning desire” that, during the Jubilee, “the Christian people may reflect on the corporal and spiritual works of mercy. It will be a way to reawaken our conscience, too often grown dull in the face of poverty.” He adds that mercy is “the very foundation of the Church’s life” and that “all of her pastoral activity should be caught up in the tenderness she makes present to believers.” Francis later says that “nothing in her preaching and in her witness to the world can be lacking in mercy. The Church’s very credibility is seen in how she shows merciful and compassionate love.” In his homily at Vespers, he said “many question in their hearts: why a Jubilee of Mercy today? Simply because the Church, in this time of great historical change, is called to offer more evident signs of God’s presence and closeness. ”This is not the time to be distracted,” he continued. “On the contrary, we need to be vigilant and to reawaken in ourselves the capacity to see what is essential.  This is a time for the Church to rediscover the meaning of the mission entrusted to her by the Lord on the day of Easter: to be a sign and an instrument of the Father’s mercy.”  The Pope concluded: “My thoughts now turn to the Mother of Mercy. May the sweetness of her countenance watch over us in this Holy Year, so that all of us may rediscover the joy of God’s tenderness. No one has penetrated the profound mystery of the incarnation like Mary. Her entire life was patterned after the presence of mercy made flesh. The Mother of the Crucified and Risen One has entered the sanctuary of divine mercy because she participated intimately in the mystery of his love. In this Jubilee Year, let us allow God to surprise us. He never tires of throwing open the doors of his heart and repeats that he loves us and wants to share his love with us. The Church feels the urgent need to proclaim God’s mercy. Her life is authentic and credible  only when  she  becomes  a  convincing  herald  of  mercy!”

 




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