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Bishop opens Holy Door in Lewiston


Once designated as “holy” for a jubilee year, the door allows the graces and indulgences of the holy year to pilgrims who pass through it.

To inaugurate the Holy Year of Mercy declared by Pope Francis, Bishop Robert P. Deeley opened the fourth and final holy door in the Diocese of Portland when he celebrated Mass at the Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul in Lewiston on December 20, the fourth Sunday of Advent.

“This jubilee year invites all believers to contemplate the mystery of mercy, to receive the grace of mercy through sacramental reconciliation, and to live the corporal and spiritual works of mercy,” said Bishop Deeley to the large gathering that convened for the event.

Earlier in the month, Bishop Deeley opened holy doors at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Portland, St. John Church in Bangor and St. Luce Church in Frenchville. The bishop decided to open doors at four churches so that more people would have the opportunity to make a pilgrimage and pass through a holy door, a significant part of the celebration of a jubilee year.

The purpose of the Holy Year of Mercy is to help all believers have a genuine experience of God’s mercy: both mercy received and mercy given. The holy door represents the passage to salvation which was opened to humanity by Jesus. The doors, once designated as “holy” for a jubilee year, then permit pilgrims entering through them to gain the plenary indulgence that is connected with the jubilee.

“In the spirit of this jubilee, I have designated this magnificent basilica as a place of pilgrimage,” the bishop said at the event. “I invite all the faithful to enter through its holy doors so as to encounter the Lord Jesus, Mercy himself, Mercy incarnate, on whom we depend for our salvation, by whom we are loved despite our sinfulness, and through whom we learn to serve our brothers and sisters.”

The holy doors will remain open through the Holy Year of Mercy, which began on December 8, the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception, and will continue until November 20, 2016, the Solemnity of Christ the King. Monsignor Caron said the Prince of Peace Parish is putting together a pilgrimage schedule, so that the parish is prepared to warmly welcome groups that come.

One Response to “Bishop opens Holy Door in Lewiston”

  • Julie Hayes:

    Msgr. Caron ,

    Requesting pilgrimage schedule welcoming groups to participate in Open Doors in the Diocese of portland.


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