Opening the door to mercy

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Opening the door to mercy

Pope Francis’ call for a Jubilee Year of Mercy was celebrated in Hobart on Sunday December 13, with the opening of the Processional Doors of St Mary’s Cathedral.
Almost 300 faithful gathered together to form a procession that made its way from the grounds of St Mary’s College to St Mary’s Cathedral, to witness the opening of the doors which have been set aside as the ‘Mercy Door’  - signifying a portal for receiving the Mercy of God.

In March this year, Pope Francis announced an Extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy, to coincide with the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception.

As part of the Jubilee of Mercy Pope Francis announced, in an historical first, that churches in every diocese worldwide would participate in the Year of Mercy and function as a ‘Mercy Door.’

“In passing through the Holy Door… may we feel that we ourselves are part of this mystery of love, of tenderness,” Pope Francis said.

The theme of Mercy is a timely one for Archbishop Julian, who described the concept of mercy as a means of healing for today’s troubled world.

“When mercy is not present in life, life becomes harsh, hard, the Spirit becomes cold, we become very self-protective, we are quick to find fault with others…” he said.

Archbishop Julian also explained that the procession through the doors was performed with a penitential spirit and that participation in the Sacrament of Reconciliation was a good way to engage with the Pope’s Year of Mercy.
“The Pope has been encouraging us particularly to come into it with a certain penitential spirit, and the way that I express (this spirit) is going to the Sacrament of Penance,” he said.

Archbishop Julian has encouraged Tasmanian Catholics to make their own pilgrimages to engage with this Year of Mercy, by entering into the ‘Spirit and Grace’ of this jubilee year.

“Through mercy we find peace in ourselves and peace in our relationship with others. We can bring compassion to those who are suffering, to those who are in need,” Archbishop Julian said.

“The year offers great scope to those who can find it as a source of great personal interior renewal.”

Click here view photos of Archbishop Julian's Opening the door to mercy, part of the celebration of the Jubilee of Mercy in Hobart.