The Year of the Jubilee is a year-long Roman Catholic traditon that dates back to the 1300s when Pope Boniface VIII published the Papal Bull of the First Christian Jubilee. The Extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy 2015-2016 began on the 8th of December 2015 with the unsealing of the Holy Door of St. Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican and will end on the 20th of November 2016. This is an entire year that focuses on compassion and pardon for the Roman Catholic Church. While this special period usually occurs only every 25 years or so, Pope Francis declared this Extraordinary Year of the Jubilee only 15 years after the Great Jubilee of 2000. Pope Francis convoked the entire world to seek for mercy, ask for forgiveness of sins and to spread the message of redemption.
The unsealing of the Holy Door of St. Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican marks the official start of the Jubilee. Closed for years and normally hidden behind a brick wall, the opening of the doors also symbolically opens the way to salvation and mercy. Joining St. Peter's in this tradition are Rome's St. John Lateran, St Paul’s Outside the Walls and Santa Maria Maggiore along with other churches and basilicas around the world.
As the Jubilee Years occur more than a decade apart, visiting Rome during the period presents an exceptional experience. Make the most out of your trip with special tours and excursions visiting significant Jubilee sites and with special events like the Papal Audience, a VIP experience such as a semi-private, a private tour or a small group tour to the Vatican Museum. Visit other important Churches in Rome like the St. John Lateran, St Paul’s Outside the Walls, and Santa Maria Maggiore.
Take this opportunity to explore the Eternal City and its important sites such as the Colosseum, the Imperial Forums, Palatine Hill, Pantheon. Explore the city center by foot and see the Trevi Fountain, Piazza Navona and the vibrant markets of Trastevere and Campo dei Fiori.
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Tour Leaders were knowledgeable without being boring which made this experience interesting. The Basilicas are like wonderful art galleries and very peaceful and calming in this hectic city.