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An act of clemency

· The Pope reminds prisoners that hope must not be stifled and he makes an appeal to authorities ·

At the Angelus on Sunday, 6 November, following the Mass for the occasion of the Jubilee for Prisoners, Pope Francis made an appeal “in favour of improving the living conditions” of inmates held in detention centres. 

He then emphasized “the importance of reflecting on the need for a criminal justice system that is not exclusively punitive, but open to the hope and the prospect of reintegrating the offender into society”. Therefore, he asked that “the competent civil authorities of every country” consider “in this Holy Year of Mercy” the possibility that “an act of clemency be carried out for those prisoners who are held to be eligible”.

In the homily for the Jubilee Mass at which he had just presided in the Vatican Basilica, Francis recalled “the ‘breath’ of hope, which cannot be stifled by anyone or anything”, and that “by learning from past mistakes”, people can change their lives and be reintegrated into society. In a tangible sign of his own personal commitment, on Sunday afternoon the Pope met with a group of prisoners in the Santa Marta residence.




St. Peter’s Square

Dec. 14, 2019