Saturday, March 14, 2015

An Extraordinary Jubilee!

Holy Doors of St. Peter's in Rome
On Friday March 13 during a ceremony in St. Peter's Basilica to celebrate the two year anniversary of the papacy of Pope Francis, the Holy Father announced that starting on the feast of the Immaculate Conception on December 8, an extraordinary Jubilee year will begin. The extraordinary Jubilee will last until November 20, 2016, marking the the 27th Jubilee in History.

In the Catholic tradition, a Jubilee is the mother of all religious events. It is a time for the remission of sins and of suffering from sin, reconciliation, conversion, and sacramental penance.
Interestingly, according to biblical regulations the Jubilee has its origin in Israel where according to Leviticus, slaves and prisoners would be freed, debts would be forgiven and the mercies of God would be particularly manifest. The start of the holy year would be made formal by the blowing of a ram's horn. Here in Rome, rather, the Holy year begins when the Pope himself opens the Holy Doors of St. Peter's. These special doors remain open only during the Jubilee, during which pilgrims will pass through them as they enter St. Peter's in search of penance. At the end of the year they are once again sealed until the following Holy Year.

Jubilee time in Rome equates to a boom in overall tourism. Hotels, tours of Rome and the Vatican, restaurants, shops, and transport are likely to experience a much needed boom in the coming year. The strong dollar-euro exchange will make it advantageous for Americans to travel to Italy for this yearlong event.

In addition to our classic tours of the Vatican and Rome, When In Rome Tours will soon be revealing a series of Rome Jubilee Tours.

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