October 9, 2009.
In a corner of one of the oldest neighborhoods in all of Rome, Trastevere, is home to a church called San Benedetto in Piscinula.
Because of its small size some may not even know it exists. But inside its walls is a very important piece of the city’s and the church’s history.
P. Eduardo Caballero
Vice President Heralds of the Gospel Association “It’s church that was constructed on the ruins of Domus Anicoirum, that’s why they call it the home of the Aniciii’s. The Aniciii’s were an ancient Roman family of which“Saint Benedict of Nursia” was a member of. The story goes, Saint Benedict himself lived here during a period of about 5 to 7 years while he was studying to be senator.”
This small room was the cell where the Saint lived. Years later, this church was built over the foundation of his home. That’s why this place continues to be one of the most important pilgrimage centers for the Benedictine order.
But San Benedetto in Piscinula is not only a part of the Church’s history, its authentic jewels also make it a part of art history.
Take a look at this image of the Virgin of Mercy, for example. The church also houses the oldest bell tower in all of Rome, which dates back to the 12th century, and has an impressive cosmatesque mosaic floor.
D. Eduardo Caballero
Vice President Heralds of the Gospel Association Italy“It has a very original Cosmatesque, early Cosmatesque art, even with some flaws that give more value. The columns of the aisles are all looting, with different capitals.”
Today the ancient house of Saint Benedict is the home of the Heralds of the Gospel Association. It’s an International Roman Catholic association which was founded in Brazil by father Joao Scognamiglio Cla Dias during the 70’s. The spirituality of the Heralds is centered around three points, the devotion to the Eucharist, the Virgin and the Pope.
The diocese of Rome entrusted this church a few years ago, linking past, present and future history of the Church in this small corner of Rome.