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Title: The Great Jubilee and the Purification of Memory
Author(s): LENEHAN, Kevin
Journal: Louvain Studies
Volume: 25    Issue: 4   Date: winter 2000   
Pages: 291-311
DOI: 10.2143/LS.25.4.897

Abstract :
The awareness of the advent of the third millennium in the histor-
ical self-understanding and ministry of Pope John Paul II cannot be
underestimated. The first encyclical of his pontificate made explicit ref-
erence to the impending turn of the millennium, and interpreted the
last years of the twentieth century as ‘a new Advent,' preparing for the
celebration of the Great Jubilee.1In his apostolic letter on the prepara-
tion for the Jubilee of the Year 2000, The Third Millennium (Tertio Mil-
lennio Adveniente), he writes that 'preparing for the Year 2000 has become as it were a hermeneutical key of my pontificate.' Convinced that 'in the Church's history every jubilee is prepared for by Divine Providence,' he affirms that the Second Vatican Council was 'a providential event, whereby the Church began the more immediate preparation for the Jubilee of the Second Millennium.' He notes the importance of the Council in its historical context of 'the profoundly disturbing experiences of the twentieth century, a century scarred by the First and Second World Wars, by the experience of concentration camps and by horrendous massacres.' The richness and new tone of the Council's teaching constituted a 'proclamation of new times,' and leads the Pope to affirm that 'the best preparation for the new millennium, therefore, can only be expressed in a renewed commitment to apply, as faithfully as possible, the teachings of Vatican II to the life of every individual Christian and of the whole Church.'

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