A Jubilee Year is celebrated in Santiago de Compostela whenever July 25, the day of Santiago the Elder, falls on a Sunday.
A Jubilee Year is celebrated in Santiago de Compostela whenever July 25, the day of Santiago the Elder, falls on a Sunday. This happens with a time sequence of six, five, six and eleven years. The creation of the Holy Year in Santiago goes back to the XV century. It is believed that the first one in history could have been the Jubilee Year of 1428, or perhaps 1434, both convened by Archbishop Lope de Mendoza.
Celebration of the Fires of the Apostle on the night of July 24
The creation of the Holy Year in Santiago goes back to the XV century. It is believed that the first one in history could have been the Jubilee Year of 1428, or perhaps 1434, both convened by Archbishop Lope de Mendoza. The next Holy Year will be in 2021
However, before the Holy Year of Compostela became official, during the Middle Ages, the pilgrims could obtain numerous indulgences in Santiago, granted by the Church of Compostela in representation of the Apostle, the advocate of his pilgrims before the Supreme Judge. The indulgences are spiritual benefits for the pilgrim himself or for an ill or a deceased person represented by the pilgrim.
As from the creation of the Holy Year, the same grace could be obtained by the pilgrims who, in a normal year, visited the Cathedral on July 25, the feast day of the Passion of Santiago, or on the feast day of the Dedication of the Cathedral, every April 21, or on the feast day of the Transfer of the Body of the Apostle to Galicia, every December 30. This reduced the pressure provoked by the concentration of pilgrims on one day in summer, July 25, by convening the pilgrims in spring and winter too.
The last four Holy Years were 1993, 1999, 2004 and 2010. The next July 25 which will fall on a Sunday will be in 2021.
The Jubilee and how to obtain it
Achieving the Jubilee is obtaining the plenary indulgence or forgiveness for sins granted by the Church.
During all the year, the pilgrims who wish can obtain the plenary indulgence (forgiveness for their sins) during any day of that year. Achieving the plenary indulgence is what is known as the Jubilee. To do so, the pilgrims must comply with a number of precepts laid down by the Church such as visiting the Cathedral of Santiago, praying and receiving the Sacraments of Penance (Confession) and Communion.