Pope Francis calls for global justice in Jubilee Year proclamation

VATICAN CITY -- Pope Francis proclaimed the upcoming Jubilee Year 2025 at a ceremony in St Peter’s Basilica on Thursday. 

  The pope used the announcement of the jubilee to spread an important message of “hope” and “forgiveness”, even calling for “more affluent nations” to “acknowledge the gravity of so many of their past decisions and determine to forgive the debts of countries that will never be able to repay them.” 

  Francis clarified that this is “more than a question of generosity, this is a matter of justice,” and cited the “true ecological debt” which exists between the “global North and South, connected to commercial imbalances”. 

  He also requested the “abolition of the death penalty” which he described as “at odds with the Christian faith.” 

  The pope likewise used the speech to address the ongoing conflicts, “with the money spent on weapons and other military expenditures, let us establish a global fund that can finally put an end to hunger and favour development in the most impoverished countries so that their citizens will not resort to violent or illusory situations, or have to leave their countries in order to seek a more dignified life.” 

  The Jubilee year will begin with the opening of the Holy Door of St Peter’s Basilica on Christmas Eve, 2024 and will conclude with the Solemnity of Epiphany, on 6 Jan 2026.