Significance of the Holy Door

By opening the Holy Door and the Jubilee Year of Mercy in the cathedral, Francis broke with a centuries-old tradition, and for a very good reason — peace and reconciliation in a country in conflict and deep trouble.

Dec 04, 2015

BANGUI: By opening the Holy Door and the Jubilee Year of Mercy in the cathedral, Francis broke with a centuries-old tradition, and for a very good reason — peace and reconciliation in a country in conflict and deep trouble. In doing so, he put the “periphery” at the center of the Church’s attention, brought this destructive and deadly conflict to a new level of international concern and gave a whole new dimension to the Jubilee of Mercy.  

Francis himself had this to say about opening the Jubilee Year in Bangui. “Today, Bangui becomes the spiritual capital of the world. And the Holy Year of Mercy arrives before time in this land that has suffered for several years
from war, hate, incomprehension, and the lack of peace.”

Speaking spontaneously before opening the Holy Door, Francis said that “in this suffering land, there are all the countries in the world that are suffering the cross of war.” And so, he said, “Bangui becomes the spiritual capital of prayer for the mercy of the Father. We all ask for peace, mercy, reconciliation, pardon and love for Bangui, for the Central African Republic and for all the countries that are suffering war. We ask peace for them all.” He concluded by inviting all present “to pray for love and peace in this land, and let us begin the Holy Year with this prayer.” -- America

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