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Read Pope Francis' apostolic letter Misericordia et misera

As the Year of Mercy came to a close Nov. 20, Pope Francis released an apostolic letter imploring us to continue being merciful. This letter, Misericordia et misera (mercy with misery) highlights key themes of Francis. Read Misericordia et misera (Vatican website, available in multiple languages) 
Holy Door of Mercy at cathedral is closed.
The Year of Mercy officially concluded on Nov. 20, the feast of Christ the King, with the closing of the Holy Door of St. Peter's Basilica in Rome, but the font of God's mercy never runs dry. May the spirit of the year live on in our hearts and in our hands!
On Nov. 13, the Holy Door of the Cathedral of Saint Andrew was closed by Father John Geaney, CSP, pastor/rector, at the conclusion of the Sunday 10 a.m. Mass.

 Closing the cathedral's Holy Door of Mercy



Many groups and individuals made pilgrimages through the cathedral's door of mercy to symbolically experience "the love of God who consoles, pardons, and instills hope." (Pope Francis)symbolically experience "the love of God who consoles, pardons, and instills hope." (Pope Francis)

(Reflection on the Year of Mercy)

Bishop Walkowiak's Year of Mercy letter to parishioners
(English | Español)

The Year of Mercy began in Rome when Pope Francis opened the Holy Door in St. Peter’s Basilica on Tuesday, Dec. 8, the 50th anniversary of the closing of the Second Vatican Council and the solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary. The pope decreed that Holy Doors be opened in all the cathedrals of the world on Dec. 13.

Announcing the Year of Mercy
Pope Francis has announced the Extraordinary Jubilee Year of Mercy beginning on December 8, 2015, the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary, and concluding on November 20, 2016, the Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe. 
Read More | Prayer of Pope Francis for the Jubilee

Year of Mercy Events held in our diocese 
(View our Events Calendar)

Nov. 13, 2016 - Closing of the Holy Door
As the Jubilee of Mercy comes to a close, Father John Geaney, CSP, rector of the Cathedral of Saint Andrew will celebrate 10 a.m. Sunday Mass and preside over the closing of the Holy Door at the cathedral on Nov. 13. Also on this day the Holy Doors of Basilicas of Rome and in the other dioceses of the world will be closed. The Holy Door of St. Peter's Basilica will be closed on Nov. 20 concluding the Year of Mercy.

Nov. 5, 2016, 2 p.m. - Jubilee for Prisoners Prayer Service, St. Mary Church, GR. Bishop Walkowiak will preside at this prayer service for those incarcerated and their relatives, prison and jail volunteers and chaplains, all employees of correctional facilities, victims of crimes and their families and associations that offer internal or external assistance to our prisons and jails. Details | View photos

Nov. 4, 2016, 7 - 9 p.m. - Memorial Mass for God's Children, Cathedral of Saint Andrew, GR. Bishop Walkowiak will offer a Memorial Mass for families as a way to remember and celebrate the lives of children who have died before baptism. Details

Sept. 16 (with Bishop Walkowiak), Sept. 23, Sept. 30th - Festival of Congregational Song to celebrate the Year of Mercy (Fall dates at churches throughout our diocese) -Join with your brother and sister Christians in a festival of hymns and songs centered on the theme of mercy, interspersed with brief readings from the words of Pope Francis on the many facets of God’s mercy. Details

August 19, 2016, 7-8:30 p.m. - Pilgrimage to the Cathedral Holy Doors of Mercy for Those Who Have Experienced Abortion. Contact: Maggie Walsh,

June 11, 2016 - Strengthened in Faith: A Day of Jubilee for Families with Children, Youth or Adults with Disabilities or Special Needs. Details

Mercy, Transform the World, (June 6 & 10, 2016) - Grand Rapids Dominican Sisters' 800th Jubilee Speaker Series on the theme of mercy. Details

May 27 - 29 - Jubilee for Deacons. Read a special report from FAITH Catholic.

Dec. 27, 2015 - Jubilee for Families: The Pontifical Council for the Family has prepared a resource for families who wish to make the pilgrimage to the Holy Door of the Jubilee – in any Cathedral or the four Papal Basilicas in Rome. It also suitable for families to use as an at home resource to observe the Year of Mercy. See below. The itinerary is divided into three main moments, during which families are invited to thank the Lord, to ask God and one another for forgiveness, and to choose a concrete exercise of mercy to be lived together, with trust in God who welcomes and loves everyone.

Dec. 13, 2015 - Opening of the Cathedral Holy Door of Mercy: Bishop David Walkowiak formally opened the Jubilee of Mercy in our diocese with a proclamation and the blessing of the Cathedral Holy Door. This ceremony took place at the start of the 10 a.m. celebration of Sunday Mass.
Watch video: (Bishop Walkowiak's Dec. 13 homily | Opening the Holy Door of Mercy | Photo gallery)

Nov. 30, 2015 - Sealing of the Cathedral Holy Door of Mercy,
Cathedral of Saint Andrew, GR (The Holy Door is the north-facing door on the north side of the church near the handicap accessible ramp.) (Photo gallery)

Resources (Passage of the Holy Door | Guia para entrar por la Puerta Santa)


 Bishop Walkowiak opens the Holy Door of Mercy

Jubilee of Mercy Logo and Motto: Description and Meaning
The logo and the motto together provide a fitting summary of what the Jubilee Year is all about. Read More
Holy Doors of Mercy: Spiritual Background and Meaning
In Catholic tradition, the Holy Door represents the passage to salvation -- the path to a new and eternal life, which was opened to humanity by Jesus. During the Year of Mercy, Pope Francis invites us to contemplate the notion of a Holy Door, “a Door of Mercy through which anyone who enters will experience the love of God who consoles, pardons, and instills hope.”  Read More | Proclaiming the Holy Year at the Holy Door (CNS) | Audio reflection to prepare for the Holy Door (multiple languages)
The Cathedral of Saint Andrew, including the Holy Door, is open to the public:
Monday through Friday: 6:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Saturday: 9:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.
Sunday: 9 a.m. to 9:30 p.m.
Jubilee of Mercy Indulgences
A Jubilee also entails the granting of indulgences. This practice will acquire an even more important meaning in the Holy Year of Mercy.  Pope Francis' Jubilee Letter on Indulgences | Indulgences explained (Catholic Culture) | How do I gain an Indulgence?
The Sacrament of Reconciliation: "The Light is on for You"
Rediscover God's grace and merciful love through the sacrament of reconciliation. Learn about how to make a good confession and dates, times and locations throughout our diocese to celebrate the sacrament.  Read More
Monthly Mercy Actions: Schedule
Suggested actions of mercy for each month during the Jubilee of Mercy. Read More
Year of Mercy Events
The Year of Mercy events will highlight the rediscovering and rendering of God’s mercy, with which we are all called to give comfort to every man and every woman of our time. View Calendar
Praying & reflecting on the Spiritual Works of Mercy
The Spiritual Works of Mercy are acts of compassion by which we help our neighbors with their emotional and spiritual needs. Read More

Praying & reflecting on the Corporal Works of Mercy
The Corporal Works of Mercy are these kind acts by which we help our neighbors with their material and physical needs. Read More 
D.J. Florian, director of pastoral services
p: 616-551-4748 | e: