2016 – A Jubilee Year
Last year, during a Lenten penitential service in St. Peter’s Basilica, Pope Francis summoned an extraordinary Jubilee to be called the Holy Year of Mercy.
What is A Jubilee Year?
A jubilee year is a special year called by the church to receive blessing and pardon from God and remission of sins.
Normally, in order to be forgiven, pilgrims must visit all of the 4 papal basilicas and Rome and the Vatican City during the Holy Year and walk through the holy doors, which are opened only during a Jubilee Year.
But this year is a historical first as the Pope Francis deemed this year’s Jubilee be opened worldwide and that every diocese around the world is supposed to open a Holy Door. The dioceses have registered their locations on a dedicated interactive Google map so pilgrims from around the globe can participate.
When is the Jubilee Year?
The Jubilee Year started on December 8, 2015 with the opening of the Holy Door of St. Peter’s Basilica at the Vatican. The other holy doors of basilicas around the world were also opened as a sign of God’s opening a new pathway to salvation. The Jubilee year runs through to November 20, 2016. when the holy doors at St. Peter’s Basilica and in cathedrals around the world are closed.
How does the Jubilee Year impact travel to Rome?
You can expect Rome to be busier than usual, so booking ahead of time is essential especially if you are planning on doing a Vatican Museum and St. Peter’s Walking Tour. Pilgrims travelling to Rome to attend Jubilee events will need to register in advance for a specific time slot to enter the Holy Doors.
Book a Private Tour and avoid the queues – your tour guide will guide you past the long lines an you will enter the Vatican at your appointed entrance. The Vatican is the smallest sovereign state in the world, at just over 100 acres, and has less than 1000 inhabitants. Over the past millennium, the Catholic church and its Popes have been amassing amazing works of art within its walls.
The Vatican is the center of Catholic religious life and your private guided visit to this mystic, religious, spiritual, artistic and historical treasure will leave you in wonder and awe. You will view the Sistine Chapel with your expert guide, where you can see Michelangelo’s The Last Judgment, as well as the other stunning works of art by other renowned artists.
You will have plenty of time to ask questions and truly understand the Vatican from an insider’s perspective. From there you will continue through the Vatican museums, viewing sculptures, painting and other works of art that will take your breath away.
After the museums, you will visit St. Peter’s Basilica. The Basilica is impressive for its immense size, beautiful golden light and many famous works of art, most importantly Michelangelo’s Pieta (Piety).
Make sure you don’t miss this special Jubilee Year by visiting Rome.