Merciful, Like the Father

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The Jubilee Year of Mercy proclaimed by Pope Francis begins one month from today—December 8. Even though it’s weeks away, we should get ready now to celebrate this once-in-a-lifetime event.

The Jubilee Year is a new step on the Church’s journey to bring the Gospel of mercy to each person. As the Pope reminds us, “The whole Church is in need of mercy, for we are sinners.”

Year of Mercy LogoWhat is the Jubilee Year of Mercy? A formal way that our Catholic community might share a living experience of the closeness of the Father, whose tenderness toward us, Pope Francis says, is “almost tangible.” During this year, we hope to rediscover the joy of God’s mercy, which is greater than any sin.

The Jubilee also is intended to remind us that we, in turn, are instructed by Jesus to give comfort to others throughout the human family. “Be merciful, even as your Father is merciful,” he said.

Perhaps the most encouraging words from Pope Francis? No one can judge us except God, and “his is a judgment of mercy.” The Pope adds, “Do not forget that God forgives all and God forgives always. Let us never tire of asking forgiveness.”

Our prayer today: God of mercy, you are eager to forgive and quick to forget. Help us accept the gift of your mercy without question, and grant forgiveness to us and to others.


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