As preparations continue in Rome for the 2025 Jubilee year, St Peter’s Basilica has announced two new charity projects aimed at helping refugees and prisoners. Source: Vatican News.
More than 30 million pilgrims are expected to arrive in Rome for the 2025 Jubilee Year.
“Sea Rosaries”, the first of the basilica’s projects for the Jubilee Year, will see individuals with refugee backgrounds work at St Peter’s to build rosaries from the wood of boats used by migrants to reach Europe.
Moreover, some initial work in the construction of these rosaries is being carried out by individuals incarcerated in various prisons throughout Italy.
The second project is a collaboration with the Second Chance Association, a non-profit that works to offer employment opportunities to prisoners and ex-prisoners.
One inmate of Rome’s Rebbibia prison has been employed full-time as an electrician in the Basilica for several months, and inmates in the Mammagialla prison in Viterbo have been tasked with making bags.
At a press conference held at the Vatican yesterday, Cardinal Mauro Gambetti, the Archpriest of St Peter’s Basilica, discussed the relationship between the upcoming Jubilee and the Basilica’s new charity projects.
According to the Mosaic law, he said, jubilees were to be held every 50 years in memory of the Jewish people’s escape from slavery in Egypt. In ancient times, he noted, jubilees involved freeing slaves, forgiving debts and leaving land untilled in order to let it regenerate.
Cardinal Gambetti said these practices, like the Basilica’s new social projects, promoted a spirit of solidarity and the dream of giving everyone a second chance.
St Peter’s Basilica unveils charity projects ahead of 2025 Jubilee (By Joseph Tulloch, Vatican News)