The Door of Mercy sits above the threshold of Our Lady of Mercy Catholic Church on Boca Grande, FL within the Diocese of Venice, Florida. The 1950 chapel and grounds are a very quiet and reflective space, especially before winter season hits this resort barrier island community. What I’m sad about is the walled bougainvillea, which by the time season ends, will be at full glorious bloom, and is only now a little nod of what is yet to come. I’m also sad about the design of the Door of Mercy sign itself, mostly because it covers the original construction material and I think it is a bit incongruous with the overall period and style of the architecture (too modern and manufactured).
However, in doing a little digging I learned a special aspect of this current Year of Mercy is the “Holy Door,” which will be at all the diocesan cathedrals of the world as well as some other Shrines and Parishes. In the Diocese of Venice, two Parishes – Epiphany Cathedral in Venice and Our Lady of Mercy in Boca Grande – will have a door designated as a Holy Door. These doors will be opened on the Third Sunday in Advent, Dec. 13, with a solemn rite. When the Holy Door is opened, Pope Francis noted, it “will become a Door of Mercy through which anyone who enters will experience the love of God who consoles, pardons, and instills hope.”
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