Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Dictionary

A modern dictionary of Catholic terms, both common and obscure. Find accurate definitions of words and phrases.

Search:

Or browse the dictionary by selecting a letter!
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

HOLY YEAR

Essentially, a year during which the Pope grants a special indulgence, called the Jubilee, to all the faithful who visit Rome and pray according to specified conditions. First instituted in 1300 by Pope Boniface VIII, whose original intention was that it be celebrated only every hundred years. Since then there have been three changes in the intervals. In 1343, Pope Clement VI decreed that the Holy Year be celebrated every fifty years; Urban VI in 1389 reduced it to thirty-three years in honor of the years of Christ's life; and paul II in 1470 made it every twenty-five years, which is the period that has been kept every since. Pope Pius XI made an exception in 1933 to commemorate the nineteenth centennial of Christ's death, resurrection, and ascension. Since 1500 the Jubilee Indulgence could be gained in one's native country, under specified conditions, after the Roman year was completed. The opening and closing of the Holy Doors at St. Peter's in Rome marks the opening and closing of each Holy Year.

All items in this dictionary are from Fr. John Hardon's Modern Catholic Dictionary, © Eternal Life. Used with permission.

Subscribe for free
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Recent Catholic Commentary

Smaller Church, Bigger Faith, 3: Ecclesiastical Discipline April 17
The Holy Spirit and Evangelization: A Primer April 16
Journey to the Sun: A Strange Biography of Junípero Serra April 16
Russia's demographic recovery + US demographic decline = danger April 16
James Carroll strikes (at the Church) again April 16

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
Pope Francis's Easter Message 'Urbi et Orbi' (To the City and the World): full text, link to video CWN - 16 hours ago
Pope Francis: Easter Vigil homily (full text) CWN - 16 hours ago