Pope Francis inaugurates a Year of Prayer in preparation for the 2025 Jubilee.

February 1, 2024

A smiling Pope Francis waves at a large crowd in St Peter's Square, surrounded by happy people, most of whom appear to be filming him on their phones.

Pope Francis inaugurated a Year of Prayer earlier this month calling on the faithful “to pray more fervently... and to experience the power of hope in God.” The Year of Prayer aims to help Catholics prepare for the 2025 Jubilee - which has the theme "Pilgrims of Hope" - and is dedicated to rediscovering the great value and absolute need for prayer in our personal lives, in the life of the Church, and throughout the world.

Jubilees or Holy Years have historically been used in the Catholic Church to declare special years for forgiveness and reconciliation. The first jubilee was declared by Pope Boniface VIII in February 1300 – on the Feast of the Chair of St Peter – to mark the beginning of that century. He later recommended it occurring every 100 years with Pope Paul II setting the present 25-year interval in the 1500s. A Great Jubilee was declared in 2000 by Pope John Paul II to celebrate the new millennium; Holy Years are “ordinary” when they occur at 25-year intervals and “extraordinary” when they are proclaimed for a special reason. The 2025 jubilee will be a year of hope and trust for a world suffering the impacts of war, the ongoing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and the increased threats to the climate.

Reflecting on the Year of Prayer, the Pro-Prefect of the Dicastery for Evangelisation, Archbishop Fisichella said: "it is a privileged time in which to rediscover the value of prayer and the need for daily prayer in our Christian life." The Dicastery for Evangelisation plans to release materials to help the faithful celebrate the Pilgrims of Hope Jubilee Year, with work to prepare for 2025 continuing.

The Jubilee Year in 2025 will be a special time to pause and reflect; a time to re-establish a proper relationship with God, with one another, and with all of creation. People across our community of faith can learn more about the upcoming Jubilee Year at the Jubilee website: