Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Station Churches Begin...

Since lent begin today, so does the Station Church rotation in Rome. Everday during lent they have mass in a different ancient church...and you are supposed to walk there while praying (especially the rosary). The tradition dates back to around Pope St. Gregory the Great in the 6th century. I'll do my best to give you a brief summary of the daily church.

Today's church is Santa Sabina all'Aventino (St. Sabina at the Aventine)

The pope traditionally begins lent by celebrating mass at this church.

Church dedicated to St Sabina, 2nd century martyr.


The church was built in the 5th century, presumably at the site of the original Titulus Sabinae, a church in the home of Sabina who had been martyred c. 114. Tradition holds that Santa Sabina was a widow who was converted to Christianity by her servant. She was martyred during the persecutions by Hadrian (117-138). From the apse mosaic, we know that Celestine I was serving as Pope. The tituli were the first parish churches in Rome.

It was restored in the 8th and 9th centuries.

In 1218, the church was given to the Dominicans by Pope Honorius III, who had approved the foundation of the order. They still serve the church, although since 1370 Santa Maria sopra Minerva has been their main church in Rome. The Pope was of the Savelli family, whose palace was next to the church.

St Dominic lived in the adjacent monastery for a period soon before his death in 1221. Among other residents of the monastery is St Thomas Aquinas. It is believed that St. Thomas wrote much of his Summa Theologica here.

During the Renaissance and Baroque periods, some additions were made. In the 20th century, most of these were removed to restore the church back to its original state. The restorations took place 1914-1919 and 1936-1938, and were led by A. Muzo and P. Berthier.


At 1:08 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Rob! It's been a really long time. I know I'm going against blog protocol here, but I deleted you email that sent me the link to your blog and I wanted to see if you could send me your email address again.

I hope you and the family are going really well. I'm enjoying checking out the blog.



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