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Pope announces the 'Year of Faith'

On 16th October 2011, Pope Benedict XVI announced the Year of Faith which is to run from Thursday, 11th October 2012, until 24th November 2013, the Solemnity of Christ the King.

To coincide with the announcement, the Holy Father issued an Apostolic Letter motu proprio data (written on his own initiative and signed personally by him) called Porta Fidei ('The Door of Faith') in which he formally proclaimed and explained the Year of Faith.

Pope Benedict has called the Year of Faith to strengthen Catholics who go to church, reach out to those who have left but still yearn for God in their lives, and to offer a response to those who are searching for meaning and help and those who think they do not need God.

'Faith grows when it is lived as an experience of love received, and when it is communicated as an experience of grace and joy,' the Pope wrote.

Full text of the Apostolic Letter on the Vatican's web site


The Year of Faith is associated with:
- the 50th Anniversary of the opening of the Second Vatican Council on 11th October 1962
- the 20th Anniversary of the publication of the Catechism of the Catholic Church
- the start of the XIIIth General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops which opens in October 2012.

The theme for the Synod of Bishops is
The New Evangelization for the Transmission of the Christian Faith

The bishops representing the Bishops' Conference of England and Wales attending the Synod are
Bishop Kieran Conry Arundel and Brighton
Bishop Michael Campbell OSA Lancaster

Synod documents available in English (.pdf):
Lineamenta (outline/summary - a framework for reflection and discussion)
Instrumentum Laboris (working document)

Vatican unveils calendar, logo and hymn for Year of Faith

On Thursday, 21st June 2012, Archbishop Rino Fisichella (left), President of the Pontifical Council for Promoting New Evangelisation, told a press conference that the Holy Father will preside at the opening Mass for the Year of Faith in St Peter's Square on Thursday, 11th October 2012.

The concelebrants will include the presidents of episcopal conferences, those attending the Synod of Bishops and about 35 bishops and theologians who served as members or experts at the Second Vatican Council.

Other events during the year will include:

  • April 28th -the Pope will confer the Sacrament of Confirmation and meet those recently confirmed and those about to be confirmed

  • June 2nd - Corpus Christi - the Pope will preside at Solemn Adoration of the Eucharist and asks every cathedral and church to have an hour of silent contemplation before the Blessed Sacrament at exactly the same hour

  • June 16th - the Pope will preside over a celebration of the Church’s witness to the dignity and value of every human life

  • June 22nd - a 'huge concert' in St Peter's Square with at least two orchestras and three choirs

  • July 7th - the Pope will meet seminarians and novices in religious orders, who will make a pilgrimage to Rome to demonstrate 'the joy of their decision to follow the Lord in serving his Church'

Archbishop Fisichella also revealed the Year of Faith logo and the prayer card.

The boat represents the Church. The main mast of the boat is a cross and its sails are formed from the monogram IHS, the first three letters of the Greek name of Jesus.

The background to the sails is the sun which, associated with the IHS, refers also to the Eucharist.

The prayer card has the mosaic of Jesus from the cathedral in Cefalu, Italy. The Nicene Creed is printed on the back.


There is also an official Year of Faith hymn 'Credo, Domine, Adauge Nobis Fidem', (I believe, Lord, increase our faith). The English translation will be available soon.

Plans from the Bishops' Conference of England and Wales


The Catholic Church in England and Wales News and Media web site has published pages in preparation for the Year of Faith in these countries.

Parishes are being sent free resources to help them participate in this worldwide Catholic celebration of faith. 

Details on the CCEW News and Media web site

Overview of the Year of Faith on the CCEW News and Media web site

Download the Year of Faith Introductory booklet (A4 .pdf 8 pages)

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