2016 Year of Mercy
The Jubilee of Mercy began when Pope Francis opened the Holy Door of St Peter’s Basilica on 8 December 2015 (the 50th anniversary of the closing of the Second Vatican Council) and will conclude when he closes that same door on 20 November 2016.
Pope Francis says, “We need constantly to contemplate the mystery of mercy. It is a wellspring of joy, serenity, and peace. Our salvation depends on it. Mercy: the word reveals the very mystery of the Most Holy Trinity. Mercy: the ultimate and supreme act by which God comes to meet us. Mercy: the fundamental law that dwells in the heart of every person who looks sincerely into the eyes of his brothers and sisters on the path of life. Mercy: the bridge that connects God and man, opening our hearts to the hope of being loved forever despite our sinfulness.
At times we are called to gaze even more attentively on mercy so that we may become a more effective sign of the Father’s action in our lives. For this reason I have proclaimed an Extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy as a special time for the Church, a time when the witness of believers might grow stronger and more effective.
The motto for the year, Merciful like the Father, serves as an invitation to follow the merciful example of God who asks us not to judge or condemn but to offer love and forgiveness instead.
Read the Pope’s full message on the Extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy