Pope Francis celebrated on Sunday in St. Peter’s Basilica one of the first great Holy Year events: the Jubilee of Mercy for Familes. It marked a simple ceremony and one also celebrated on the same day in hundreds of cities around the world.
The Pope observed that daily family life is in a way a type of pilgrimage in itself.
"In the Year of Mercy, every Christian family can become a privileged place on this pilgrimage for experiencing the joy of forgiveness. Within the family we learn how to forgive, because we are certain that we are understood and supported, whatever the mistakes we make.”
The Pope recalled the importance of small gestures in every day life, such as, saying grace before meals, going to Mass together, assisting parents, and helping children to know God better.
"What can be more beautiful than for a father and mother to bless their children at the beginning and end of each day, to trace on their forehead the sign of the cross, as they did on the day of their baptism? Is this not the simplest prayer which parents can offer for their children? To bless them, that is, to entrust them to the Lord.”
In summary, Pope Francis reminded those taking part in the Jubilee pilgrimage that it does not end when they pass through the Holy Door, but continues when they return home and put into practice the spiritual gifts which they have received.