Jubilee Year of Mercy200x334-jubilee-year-of-mercy-adj.jpg

On Tuesday, 8 December, the Jubilee Year of Mercy begins. The Church is invited to reflect on Jesus Christ as the 'face' of God's mercy, and to enter the mystery of God's faithful love and compassion.

The date of 8 December was chosen to start the year as it marks the fiftieth anniversary of the closing of the Second Vatican Council. Our College founder, Pope Saint John XXIII, was the catalyst for this Council. It is fitting that on this date the Jubilee Year of Mercy begins a new 'aggiornamento' in the life of our College Year of Compassion, as well as in the wider church.

The following is taken from the document Misericordiae Vultus, Pope Francis' letter which reflects on the Year of Mercy.

The full document (officially known as a 'Bull of Indiction') and other material may be found at: http://www.im.va/content/gdm/en/giubileo/bolla.html

"I have chosen the date of 8 December because of its rich meaning in the recent history of the Church. In fact, I will open the Holy Door on the fiftieth anniversary of the closing of the Second Vatican Ecumenical Council. The Church feels a great need to keep this event alive. With the Council, the Church entered a new phase of her history. The Council Fathers strongly perceived, as a true breath of the Holy Spirit, a need to talk about God to men and women of their time in a more accessible way. The walls which for too long had made the Church a kind of fortress were torn down and the time had come to proclaim the Gospel in a new way. It was a new phase of the same evangelization that had existed from the beginning. It was a fresh undertaking for all Christians to bear witness to their faith with greater enthusiasm and conviction. The Church sensed a responsibility to be a living sign of the Father's love in the world….

With these sentiments of gratitude for everything the Church has received, and with a sense of responsibility for the task that lies ahead, we shall cross the threshold of the Holy Door fully confident that the strength of the Risen Lord, who constantly supports us on our pilgrim way, will sustain us (emphasis added). May the Holy Spirit, who guides the steps of believers in cooperating with the work of salvation wrought by Christ, lead the way and support the People of God so that they may contemplate the face of mercy."

Pope Francis, Misericordiae Vultus, paragraph 4.