“Christian families make the threshold of their homes a great sign of the Door of mercy and welcome of God.” – Pope Francis, Audience 11.18.15
The Jubilee of Families, one of the moments of the year-long Jubilee of Mercy, will take place on Sunday December 27, 2015, the feast of the Holy Family. Below are resources and suggestions for your family on the Jubilee day or any time during the Jubilee year.
Resources from the Vatican
The Pontifical Council for the Family has prepared a brief resource for families to use together when they enter through the Holy Door in their diocese. The resource includes quotes from Pope Francis’s Bull of Indiction of the Extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy for families to reflect on. It also provides an opportunity for the family to express their gratitude for each other, invites family members to offer and seek forgiveness from each other, and finishes with a family commitment to serve the poor when returning home. The text is available as a PDF in English here and in Spanish here. (Note that this ritual could be used by families or other groups at any point during the Jubilee of Mercy.)
Resources from the USCCB
- Go to confession as a family. (Visit this page for resources on preparing for and understanding the Sacrament of Penance.)
- Pray together one of the great penitential psalms, like Psalm 51 or Psalm 143. Listen to audio of these psalms, along with reflections, at this page.
- Learn together about the corporal and spiritual works of mercy. Discuss as a family which works of mercy are the most difficult, the most appealing, etc. Together, decide as a family on one work of mercy to try to do together during the Jubilee of Mercy.
- Read together the monthly Meditations On Mercy provided by the USCCB.
- Set aside a time for each family member to seek and receive forgiveness from another family member(s). Pope Francis calls the word “I’m sorry” one of the three “magic words” in a family’s life (along with “thank you” and “may I”); from his audience of 4.2.14.
- Often relationships in the family are in need of reconciliation. Spend time in prayer for a relationship that needs forgiveness and healing, asking the Holy Spirit for insight on how best to reconcile with that person.
- Read together this article about forgiveness in the family, and discuss what you learned from it.