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Pope extends special Year of Mercy provisions on confession

Pope Francis signs an apostolic letter, "Misericordia et Misera," (Mercy and Misery) after celebrating the closing Mass of the jubilee Year of Mercy in St. Peter's Square at the Vatican Nov. 20. In the letter the pope called for several special initiatives begun during the Year of Mercy to continue on a permanent basis. (CNS photo/Paul Haring) See POPE-MERCY-LETTER Nov. 21 and POPE-MERCY-CLOSE Nov. 20, 2016.

VATICAN CITY — Acknowledging and sharing God’s mercy is a permanent part of the Christian life, so initiatives undertaken during the special Year of Mercy must continue, Pope Francis said. “Mercy cannot become a mere parenthesis in the life of the church,” the pope wrote in an apostolic letter, “Misericordia et Misera,” (“Mercy and Misery”),…