Holy Doors, or portae santae, are normally sealed shut from the inside and only opened during Jubilee years, during which pilgrims pass through the doors to gain a plenary indulgence. The doors of the Church "are wide open so that all those who are touched by grace can find the certainty of forgiveness," Pope Francis said. "God never ceases to demonstrate the richness of his mercy over the course of centuries.” God touches people's hearts with His grace, filling them with repentance and a desire to experience His love, he added. “The greater the sin, the greater the love, which the church must express toward those who convert.”

The Jubilee Year of Mercy will be devoted to personal conversion, prayer and apostolic works.

All but two Jubilees are to be held at 3pm EST, at Saint Joseph Co-Cathedral in Burlington - the location of the Holy Door of Mercy. Exceptions are the June 18th Jubilee for Priests and Seminarians to be held at 10a.m. at St. Joseph Co-Cathedral, and the July 17th Jubilee for Families to be held at St. Anne's Shrine, Isle la Motte @ 12:15pm.

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