Pope Grants Spanish Diocese Its 1st Jubilee

Will Mark Recovery of Patrons’ Relics

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PLASENCIA, Spain, SEPT. 21, 2009 (Zenit.org).- The Diocese of Plasencia, Spain, will enjoy its first jubilee starting next month, marking the 400th anniversary of the recovery of the relics of the city’s patrons: Sts. Fulgentius and Florentine.

Bishop Amadeo Rodríguez Magro announced the jubilee last week, explaining that it begins Oct. 3 and ends Oct. 26, 2010.

The prelate recounted that St. Fulgentius and St. Florentine, siblings of Sts. Leander and Isidore, were born in Cartagena at the end of the first half of the 6th century.

The mortal remains of both were taken by their brother Isidore to Seville, where they rested together with those of their holy siblings until the Saracen invasion. To avoid their profanation by the invaders, a group of Christians took the relics to the region of Berzocana, where they were hidden and subsequently found in the 14th century.

In 1610, the residents of that region built a shrine for the relics; next year’s jubilee will celebrate the 400th anniversary of that event.

The granting of this jubilee year of forgiveness and grace gives the faithful who venerate these saints the opportunity to “renew themselves spiritually,” said Bishop Rodríguez Magro.

The prelate also wrote a pastoral letter in which he explains to his faithful the pastoral and historic meaning of this special celebration for their diocese.
In his letter, the bishop says that a Jubilee Year “is a propitious occasion for all of us to orient our life with great intensity toward God, to seek his grace, to renew our hearts in the faith and in conversion and, together, to commit ourselves to a coexistence based on the values of the Gospel. And all this happens, because we become wayfarers; the way is the key of a jubilee year, as it is also of the Christian life.”
“The way of faith, from the moment we receive it, is full of opportunities,” he affirmed. “All of them, of course, are graces of the Lord.”

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