Category Archives: Roman churches

Pope St. Gregory the Great

Today is the Feast of Pope St. Gregory the Great, who was pope from 590-604.  He made several changes in the Roman Canon of the Mass: (1) he added the names of seven female saints (Sts. Felicity, Perpetua, Agatha, Lucy, Agnes, Cecilia, and Anastasia), having noted that none had been included; and, (2) he added the phrase: diesque nostros in tua pace disponas (order our days in Your peace), because of the invading barbarians.

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The tomb of Pope St. Gregory the Great in St. Peter’s basilica (Rome).

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The church of San Gregorio on Rome’s Caelian Hill.  It was from this church that Pope St. Gregory sent St. Augustine of Canterbury to evangelize England.

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The interior of the church

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The altar of the Blessed Sacrament

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An inscription in honor of St. Andrew the Apostle

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An inscription in honor of Pope St. Gregory I

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Gregorian Masses are named after Pope St. Gregory.  To the dismay of the monks in the monastery, money was found on a monk who had died.  St. Gregory offered Mass for the repose of his soul for 30 consecutive days, and on the last day saw the soul of the monk ascending to heaven.  This is reputedly the altar which St. Gregory used.

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“St. Gregory freed the soul of his monk by thirty Masses.”

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A close-up of the inscriptions on the altar

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The inscription over the cell where St. Gregory used to repose “by night and by day.”

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The throne of Pope St. Gregory the Great.  Notice the grate on the wall to the right.

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To the right of the throne of Pope St. Gregory is this grate, which protects hundred of relics.

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The church of San Gregorio (in the middle of the photo) seen from the Circus Maximus.  Some ruins on the Palatine Hill are to the left, and you can see the bell tower of San Francesca Romana in the Roman Forum.

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Dedication of St. Mary Major

August 5 is the Feast of the Dedication of St. Mary Major, which happens to be my favorite church in Rome.  Here you can read all about this glorious basilica.

The Borghese Chapel, with the image of Our Lady known as the 'Salus Populi Romani" (Salvation of the Roman people), attributed to St. Luke the Evangelist

The Borghese Chapel, with the image of Our Lady known as the ‘Salus Populi Romani” (Salvation of the Roman people), attributed to St. Luke the Evangelist

The dome of the Borghese Chapel

The dome of the Borghese Chapel

One of the basilica's vestments

One of the basilica’s vestments

Pope St. Pius V in the Blessed Sacrament Chapel of the basilica. The ring on his finger was donated by Napoleon Bonaparte.

Pope St. Pius V in the Blessed Sacrament Chapel of the basilica. The ring on his finger was donated by Napoleon Bonaparte.

The tomb of Gian Lorenzo Bernini in the basilica

The tomb of Gian Lorenzo Bernini in the basilica

The tomb of Pope Clement IX in the basilica. He had been canon and vicar of the basilica, and died on Dec. 9, 1669, in his 69th year, after a pontificate of 2 years, 5 months, and 19 days.

The tomb of Pope Clement IX in the basilica. He had been canon and vicar of the basilica, and died on Dec. 9, 1669, in his 69th year, after a pontificate of 2 years, 5 months, and 19 days.

Statue of Pope Sixtus V in the Blessed Sacrament Chapel

Statue of Pope Sixtus V in the Blessed Sacrament Chapel

From the statue of Pope Sixtus V, just beyond the Blessed Sacrament altar, you can see the tomb of Pope St. Pius V.

From the statue of Pope Sixtus V, just beyond the Blessed Sacrament altar, you can see the tomb of Pope St. Pius V.

The rear of the basilica

The rear of the basilica

The altar in the confessio which contains relics from the crib of Christ.  The reliquary was donated by Napoleon Bonaparte.

The altar in the confessio which contains relics from the crib of Christ. The reliquary was donated by Napoleon Bonaparte.

A close-up of the reliquary

A close-up of the reliquary

The altar in the confessio seen from behind the statue of Bl. Pope Pius IX

The altar in the confessio seen from behind the statue of Bl. Pope Pius IX

The portico of the basilica

The portico of the basilica

Another image from the portico

Another image from the portico

From the portico

From the portico

Statue of Our Lady on the facade of the basilica

Statue of Our Lady on the facade of the basilica

Statue of St. Charles Borromeo on the facade.  He had been archpriest of the basilica.

Statue of St. Charles Borromeo on the facade. He had been archpriest of the basilica.

The facade of the basilica

The facade of the basilica

Another image of the facade with a complete shot of the bell tower

Another image of the facade with a complete shot of the bell tower

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Santa Prassede

Part of the crypt of Santa Prassede (Rome)

Part of the crypt of Santa Prassede (Rome)

Tombs of some holy martyrs

Tombs of some holy martyrs

This inscription is above the tombs of the holy martyrs.  It says that their holy ashes and bones were transferred here by Pope Paschal I.

This inscription is above the tombs of the holy martyrs. It says that their holy ashes and bones were transferred here by Pope Paschal I.

The tomb of St. Prassede and St. Pudentiana

The tomb of St. Prassede and St. Pudentiana

The crypt of the church of St. Prassede where she and St. Pudentiana are buried.

The crypt of the church of St. Prassede where she and St. Pudentiana are buried.

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St. Philip Neri

Today is the Feast of St. Philip of Neri, Apostle of Rome.  He was canonized on March 22, 1622, with St. Ignatius Loyola, St. Francis Xavier, St. Teresa of Jesus of Avila, and St. Isidore the Farmer.  Someone said that Pope Gregory XV canonized four saints and an Italian.

Florence, the birthplace of St. Philip Neri

Florence, the birthplace of St. Philip Neri

The building to the right of the church of Sant'Agostino (where St. Monica is buried) is the Augustinian College where St. Philip Neri studied.  St. Thomas Aquinas was his favorite.

The building to the right of the church of Sant’Agostino (where St. Monica is buried) is the Augustinian College where St. Philip Neri studied. St. Thomas Aquinas was his favorite.

Chiesa di San Tommaso in Parione (Rome) where St. Philip Neri was ordained a priest. http://www.romeartlover.it/Vasi110.htm

Chiesa di San Tommaso in Parione (Rome) where St. Philip Neri was ordained a priest.
http://www.romeartlover.it/Vasi110.htm

Chiesa di San Girolamo della Carità (Rome) where St. Philip Neri spent the first years of his priesthood. http://www.romeartlover.it/Vasi111.htm#S. Girolamo della Carità

Chiesa di San Girolamo della Carità (Rome) where St. Philip Neri spent the first years of his priesthood.
http://www.romeartlover.it/Vasi111.htm#S. Girolamo della Carità

San Giovanni dei Fiorentini, the Florentine church in Rome oh which St. Philip Neri was in charge. He retained charge of San Girolamo while overseeing this church. http://www.romeartlover.it/Vasi87.htm#S. Giovanni dei Fiorentini

San Giovanni dei Fiorentini, the Florentine church in Rome oh which St. Philip Neri was in charge. He retained charge of San Girolamo while overseeing this church.
http://www.romeartlover.it/Vasi87.htm#S. Giovanni dei Fiorentini

Santa Maria Maggiore.  St. Philip Neri used to sit on these steps and pray the Divine Office.

Santa Maria Maggiore. St. Philip Neri used to sit on these steps and pray the Divine Office.

Santa Maria sopra Minerva, the Dominican church in Rome.  St. Philip Neri used to pray Vespers here.

Santa Maria sopra Minerva, the Dominican church in Rome. St. Philip Neri used to pray Vespers here.

Tomb of St. Ignatius Loyola. He and St. Philip Neri were great friends.

Tomb of St. Ignatius Loyola. He and St. Philip Neri were great friends.

Arm relic of St. Francis Xavier.  St. Philip Neri was also friends with him.

Arm relic of St. Francis Xavier. St. Philip Neri was also friends with him.

The heart of St. Charles Borromeo in the church Sant'Ambrogio e Carlo al Corso. The two saints were friends, although at times they were at odds with each other.  St. Charles once called St. Philip 'merciless.'  They used to pray the Office together.

The heart of St. Charles Borromeo in the church Sant’Ambrogio e Carlo al Corso. The two saints were friends, although at times they were at odds with each other. St. Charles once called St. Philip ‘merciless.’ They used to pray the Office together.

Statue of St. Paul at the Basilica St. Paul's outside the Walls. St. Philip Neri had a lifelong devotion to the Apostle of the Gentiles.

Statue of St. Paul at the Basilica St. Paul’s outside the Walls. St. Philip Neri had a lifelong devotion to the Apostle of the Gentiles.

Church of St. Philip Neri in Perugia

Church of St. Philip Neri in Perugia

The armor-clad body of St. Fortunatus in the Church of St. Philip Neri (Perugia)

The armor-clad body of St. Fortunatus in the Church of St. Philip Neri (Perugia)

A section of the heart of St. Philip Neri (Church of St. Philip Neri, Perugia)

A section of the heart of St. Philip Neri (Church of St. Philip Neri, Perugia)

Santa Maria in Vallicella (Chiesa Nuova), the principal church of the Oratorians, founded by St. Philip Neri. http://www.romeartlover.it/Vasi137.html#Today

Santa Maria in Vallicella (Chiesa Nuova), the principal church of the Oratorians, founded by St. Philip Neri.
http://www.romeartlover.it/Vasi137.html#Today

"To the Virgin Mother of God and St. Gregory the Great". Detail from the façade of Santa Maria in Vallicella. Pope St. Gregory the Great built the first church on this site.

“To the Virgin Mother of God and St. Gregory the Great”. Detail from the façade of Santa Maria in Vallicella. Pope St. Gregory the Great built the first church on this site.

The body of St. Philip Neri in the chapel to the left of the sanctuary in the Chiesa Nuova

The body of St. Philip Neri in the chapel to the left of the sanctuary in the Chiesa Nuova

St. Philip Neri, Apostle of Rome.

St. Philip Neri, Apostle of Rome.

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Pope St. Pius V

Today is the Feast of Pope St. Pius V, Pope of the Holy Rosary.

The body of Pope St. Pius V in the Sistine Chapel (Blessed Sacrament Chapel) of Santa Maria Maggiore (Rome)

The body of Pope St. Pius V in the Sistine Chapel (Blessed Sacrament Chapel) of Santa Maria Maggiore (Rome)

The ring on the finger of Pope St. Pius V was donated by none other than Napoleon Bonaparte, who returned to the Church.

The ring on the finger of Pope St. Pius V was donated by none other than Napoleon Bonaparte, who returned to the Church.

The tomb of Pope St. Pius V just beyond the Blessed Sacrament altar in the Sistine Chapel of Santa Maria Maggiore. http://www.vatican.va/various/basiliche/sm_maggiore/en/storia/cappella_sistina.htm

The tomb of Pope St. Pius V just beyond the Blessed Sacrament altar in the Sistine Chapel of Santa Maria Maggiore.
http://www.vatican.va/various/basiliche/sm_maggiore/en/storia/cappella_sistina.htm

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Scourging at the Pillar

This is a large section of the scourging pillar of Our Lord in a side chapel in the church of Santa Prassede. This relic was brought to Rome by Cardinal Giovanni Colonna from Constantinople in 1223.

This is a large section of the scourging pillar of Our Lord in a side chapel in the church of Santa Prassede. This relic was brought to Rome by Cardinal Giovanni Colonna from Constantinople in 1223.

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Relic of San Carlo Borromeo

In this side chapel in the church of Santa Prassede, to the left of the altar, is the faldstool of St. Charles Borromeo.

In this side chapel in the church of Santa Prassede, to the left of the altar, is the faldstool of St. Charles Borromeo.

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