Extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy

Le Porte Sante nelle quattro basiliche maggiori di RomaOn December 8th, 2015, feast of the Immaculate Conception, in Rome Pope Francis will open The Holy Door, which will be, the sign of theExtraordinary Jubilee of Mercy until November 20th 2016: a special year dedicated to reflection on the works of mercy “to all that is human” (Misericordiae Vultis 9) and whose motto is “Merciful as the Father“.

Peculiar sign of the Holy Year will be the pilgrimage, which will see Rome as the absolute protagonist: the Holy and Eternal City is preparing to welcome pilgrims from all around the world, who will cross the Gate of Mercy, from different roads experiencing the love of God “that comfots, that forgives and gives hope” (Misericordiae Vultis 3); but also to visit the places that have seen the culmination of the long and dense journey in faith of the Saints Peter and Paul, who made ​​Rome the city hub of Christianity, and the churches that guard the relics of Christ, translated by the first pilgrims who visited the Holy Land.

Pilgrims on foot: a project about Via Francigena

A project was presented for the improvement of Via Francigena and the regional roads that connect to Rome.

The project, under the direction of the Region of Lazio, aims to make it possible to reach Saint Peter’s Basilica safely on foot by way of Via Francigena, the official route.

Nicola Zingaretti, the president of the Region of Lazio, exlained with satisfaction the goals reached by the project: “it will be possible, finally, to enter Rome and arrive at Saint Peter’s on foot, thanks to the completion of the work bringing Via Francigena into a proper condition, a religious pathway that we offer to the world, and also a great opportunity to develop our territory”.

Via Francigena has been traveled for centuries by numerous pilgrims from all over Europe as they made their way to Rome.  During the Jubilee Year, this journey will have a special significance because it will conclude with the passage through the Holy Door.

Mons. Rino Fisichella, therefore, underlined how this pathway will be “significant and historic for the Jubilee, because we are seeking to make pilgrims around the world understand the importance of pilgrimage.  We need to take steps to make sure that they are received well.  Not only has pilgrimage united Europe, but it has also been an instrument of culture, and I hope that also today it may enrich the patrimony that belongs to us”.