Members of the parish of St Francis Xavier at the Bluff are among the thousands who have come on pilgrimage during the Year of Mercy to the Cathedral and the DHC.
Year of Mercy — pilgrimages end, works of mercy continue
[Reprinted from Denis Hurley Centre Update]
Almost every other Saturday in 2016 there have been large groups of pilgrims visiting Emmanuel Cathedral and the Denis Hurley Centre as part of the Year of Mercy. Sometimes it is a single parish; sometimes a number of parishes from a Deanery in which case the group can be as many as 800 people.
The pilgrimages have usually begun with a formal re-opening of the Holy Door as a symbol that God our Merciful Father is always ready to open the door to any one of us who is seeking mercy. After the procession there has been exposition of the Blessed Sacrament and Benediction, a Service of Reconciliation followed by Confessions, and then a celebratory Mass of Mercy. For many Catholics in the Archdiocese, this is the first time in years that they have been back at the Cathedral and it is a great homecoming.
Most groups have then moved over to the Denis Hurley Centre for a presentation and a tour. Pope Francis said that in the Year of Mercy he wants the Church to be ‘the house that welcomes all and refuses no one’. We show how we live this out every day in the Centre by carrying out the corporal Works of Mercy listed in Matthew’s Gospel (Ch 25) —feeding the hungry, caring for the sick, welcoming the stranger and so on.
Many visitors are inspired to see how they can share God’s mercy in their own communities; others have been moved to support us as we continue the works of Mercy even beyond 2016.