COMMEMORATIVE COIN 2 EURO - YEAR 2006

COMMEMORATIVE COIN 2 EURO - YEAR 2006  

22 January 1506, marked the official birth date of the Pontifical Swiss Guard. On that day a group of 150 Swiss soldiers passed through the Porta del Popolo gateway and entered the Vatican for the first time. The commemorative coin depicts the solemn swearing-in ceremony which takes place for new recruits each year on 6 May. This historical date of the Swiss Guard is closely tied to the history of the Church when 147 of the guards were killed during the Sack of Rome (6 May 1527). It is a solemn and memorable ceremony when the guards wear the full-dress uniform from the captain down to the newest halberdier. The chaplain of the Guard reads the full text of the oath of loyalty: 'I swear I will faithfully, loyally and honourably serve the Supreme Pontiff Benedict XVI and his legitimate Successors, and also serve them with all my strength, sacrificing my life, if necessary, to defend them. I assume this same commitment with regard to the Sacred College of Cardinals whenever the See is vacant. Furthermore, I promise to the Commanding Captain and my other superiors, respect, fidelity and obedience. This I swear! May God and our Holy Patrons assist me!'. It is worth noting that the Patron Saints of the Swiss Guard with their feast days are: St. Martin (11 November). St. Sebastian (20 January). St. Nicholas of Flue, 'Defensor Pacis et pater patriae' (25 September). The new recruits are then called by name, one by one, when each steps forward and places his left hand on the Guards's flag and raising his right arm with three fingers open, as a symbol of the Trinity. he swears the oath.