The Holy Year of Mercy

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This year is an extra special year for Pilgrims walking the Camino. Pope Francis has declared 2016 to be the Holy Year of Mercy. There will be a number of very special events and celebrations taking place on the Camino de Santiago tours. This will be an extraordinary jubilee as in Santiago de Compostela, St James Day (25th July) must fall on a Sunday. However, as it is a leap year it will fall on a Monday. The next jubilee is scheduled for 2021.

On 8th December 2015, here is Pope Francis opening the Holy Door at St Peter’s basilica. This is an important symbolic act. Christ identifies himself as “the door” and Pope John Paul II states that the holy door “evokes the passage from sin to grace. It was opened to remind us to retain humility. He then declared 2016 to be the Holy Year of Mercy 2016. In Rome, they will be opening many doors to cathedrals, shrines, and churches which all have a special meaning at this sacred time.

“‘Miseri-cor–dare’ simply means give heart to the people in need, console him in the adversity, assist them in the scarcity.” ( Luke 10:30-37 )
“Was it not necessary that you feel sorry for your brother as I have it for you?’” (Matthew 18:33)
“Pity with no limit, faith with no limit, hope and support with no limit.” (1 Corinthians 13:7)
“Extend the spirit of compassion and charity to all your brothers, and be merciful and humble” (1 Peter 3:8)

You might be considering walking the Camino during this Holy Year. Doing this would undoubtedly add something extra special to an already truly unique experience. You have a number of different paths to choose from that all lead to Santiago. The French Way, The Portuguese Way, The Original Way, The English Way, and now even Via Francigena Way, are all waiting for you.
Via Francigena is the ancient pilgrimage route from the English cathedral city of Canterbury to Rome. People often walk the last 150 km from Acquapendente to the eternal city of Rome. On 13th of December, the Holy Door of the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela was opened for 2016 for all those travellers and pilgrims who come to the Apostle Saint James seeking his intercession.

Our expert and super friendly staff will give you all the help and advice you need for any of these journeys. You will stay in charming accommodation and eat good, authentic traditional food. You will be well fed and well rested, allowing you to concentrate on the road ahead and enjoy meeting fellow travellers from all around the world. Along the Camino, you will enjoy the natural beauty of the routes and gorgeous moments. When you finally arrive at La Plaza de Obradoiro, you can walk through the Holy Door to the glorious Santiago de Compostela. Arriving in Santiago, there is a great buzz of excitement in the air. Many pilgrims feel reinvigorated both mentally and physically as their hearts have been opened through meditative walking along the way and the special moments shared with fellow pilgrims. To escape the noise of everyday life for a while and simply put one foot in front of the other, is an incredibly rewarding experience and the energy felt along the Camino makes for an unforgettable experience. On Sunday 20th of November of 2016 the Holy Year will close which Pope Francis has proposed for the sake of the humanity.

Check out our review of the Top Festivals on the Camino de Santiago here

For more information on our Camino routes to Santiago and Rome or to book your walking / cycling tour for the Holy Year 2016 please contact our Camino planners.

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