He took his church to task in an interview published Wednesday in Credere, a Catholic magazine reporting on the Holy Year
of Mercy, called for by Francis and starting December 8.
It was a jubilee year, a holy year
. Debts were forgiven, slaves freed and people returned to their roots.
"In a year's time, we will already be in the holy year
and numerous pilgrims will be starting to arrive from every corner of the earth," he said.
presidential candidates advocated opening our national doors to only Christian refugees and closing our borders to all Muslims, Pope Francis began his Holy Year
of Mercy by driving into a Muslim neighborhood in Bangui, Central African Republic, so racked by sectarian violence that armed U.N.
The tree, which will be decorated in time for the start of the Vatican's Holy Year
on December 8, will be festooned with ornaments made by children from cancer wards in hospitals across Italy.
"What better opportunity for this Holy Year
?" the Pope said.
The Pope will inaugurate the freshly scrubbed facade on September 30 - presenting the face that St Peter's will show the world during the Roman Catholic Church's Holy Year
celebrations for the new Millennium.
Earlier, Vatican spokesman Federico Lombardi addressed concerns about safety for pilgrims heading to Rome for the "Holy Year
of Mercy," designated by the Pope, which is due to start on November 8.
8, the opening day of the upcoming Jubilee Holy Year
for Mercy and the 50th anniversary of the closing of the Second Vatican Council.
He urged them to celebrate the Holy Year
by "breaking down all barriers in order to overcome every possible cause of division." "You too have heard the proclamation of the 'great joy prepared for all peoples': the love and mercy of the Father, the Redemption accomplished in Christ."
After a private performance for Pope John Paul II, best-selling tenor Andrea Bocelli is a favourite to win selection to perform the hymn of the 2000 Holy Year
The unforgiving assessment of Ignazio Marino -- a man the Italian media love to hate -- further heightened tensions between the pope and the mayor in the run-up to the start of the Holy Year
of Mercy in December, with the Vatican fearful the Italian capital is ill-prepared for the millions of extra pilgrims.