Año Jubilar Mariano de la Virgen del Rocío - Marian Jubilee Year of the Virgin of El Rocío
Huelva, in southern Spain, celebrates the Marian Jubilee Year of the Virgin of El Rocío, which was granted by Pope Benedict XVI in recognition of the famous Pilgrimage of El Rocío.
This year the Pilgrimage of El Rocío is even more significant than usual thanks to its designation as a Marian Jubilee Year. All year long, over one hundred religious associations from all over Spain will make special pilgrimages to Almonte and the village of El Rocío, and there will programmes of talks on the theme of the pilgrimage in addition to a variety of cultural activities including concerts, shows and traditional horse racing with ribbons. A pilgrims' mass will be held every day at midday, and the last Saturday of each month there will be a Sabatina, when the parish church of Almonte remains open the whole night long.
From the religious angle, the Marian Jubilee Year means the possibility of gaining absolution for one's sins through a pilgrimage or a visit to the image of the Virgin of El Rocío, and also coincides with two symbolic dates for the festivity. On the one hand, August 2012 marks the celebration of the bicentenary of the religious event known as the Rocío Chico, commemorating the liberation of the town from the French army; and on the other, this is also the time when the Virgin is carried from El Rocío to Almonte where she will remain for the next nine months, an event which is only repeated every seven years. The pilgrimage to obtain the jubilee must conclude in Almonte, up to 12 May, and in Aldea del Rocío from that day to the end of the Jubilee Year.
From Aug 15, 2012 to Sep 8, 2013
* Information may be subject to modifications
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