THE CEREMONY MARKING THE BEGINNING OF THE FIRST HOLY YEAR FOR OVER A DECADE WILL BE LIVE STREAMED DIRECT FROM SANTIAGO DE COMPOSTELA
The 31st December 2020 will mark the beginning of the first Compostela Holy Year or Jacobean Year for over a decade with a traditional ceremony that takes place at the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela. A Compostela Holy Year is a year in which the 25th of July falls on a Sunday allowing for the celebration of the martyrdom of St. James. In these years, believers can obtain a plenary indulgence by visiting St. James’ tomb in the cathedral, leaving them completely absolved of all their sins, which highlights everything the Camino de Santiago represents. Holy Years only occur around 14 times a century and date back to the Middle Ages. Xacobeo 2021 (the title for the 2021 Holy Year) has been declared an event of exceptional public interest.
Traditionally, the Compostela Holy Year begins with a ceremony involving the opening of the Holy Door at the Santiago de Compostela Cathedral, located in the Plaza de la Quintana. Archbishop Julián Barrio Barrio will knock a wall that covers the Holy Door with a silver hammer. The wall will then be fully knocked down and removed to allow pilgrims to enter. The Holy Door, also known as the ‘Door of Mercy’, will then remain open until 31st December 2021 in which time thousands of pilgrims will pass through the doorway to seek plenary indulgence from the Apostle’s tomb inside.
The ceremony is often attended by thousands of people however this year, in the interest of safety, the event is being live streamed by Televisión de Galicia (TVG) allowing for viewers from all over the world to take part in the celebrations. The ceremony will begin at 15:30 and run until 20:00, UK time.
If you would like to tune into the live stream to witness this historic spectacle, you can do so via the link below: