.- On Sunday Pope Francis closed the Holy Door in St. Peter’s Basilica, officially marking the end of the Jubilee of Mercy, which he said is a reminder that love is at the core of God’s attitude, rather than power and prestige.
“This Year of Mercy invites us to rediscover the core, to return to what is essential,” the Pope said Nov. 20, the Feast of Christ the King.
The “time of mercy” lived during the Jubilee serves as a call to look to “the true face of our King,” and to rediscover “the youthful, beautiful face of the Church, the face that is radiant when it is welcoming, free, faithful, poor in means but rich in love, on mission.”
Mercy, he said, takes us “to the heart of the Gospel, urges us to give up habits and practices which may be obstacles to serving the Kingdom of God” and urges us to align ourselves “only in the perennial and humble kingship of Jesus, not in submission to the precarious regalities and changing powers of every age.”
Pope Francis spoke to pilgrims gathered in St. Peter’s Square for Mass marking the end of the Jubilee of Mercy. He first announced the Jubilee during a March 13, 2015, penitential liturgy inside the basilica.
In an unprecedented move, the Pope jump-started the Holy Year by opening the Holy Door in Bangui Nov. 29, 2015, – 10 days before the Holy Year officially began Dec. 8, 2015. Not only did it mark the first time a Pope had opened a Holy Door outside of Rome, but the act was also seen as a strong sign of solidarity with the war-torn country.
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