Structure of the Penitentiary

On the left, before entering, you can admire the Source of Life by Armando Marrocco. It is a large split rock, where water flows along the cracks, while some bronze pigeons quench their thirst. This fountain represents the true source of life, which is the Love of God, living and active in the Sacraments of salvation.

The entrance door leaves show the four cardinal virtues: Prudence, Justice, Temperance and Courage.

Once inside, you find yourself in the Welcoming Room, and you can see the sculpture of the merciful father embracing the prodigal son, and a mosaic rainbow, a reminder of the covenant made by God with Noah and humanity.

Next, there is the Room of Preparation for Confession. On the wall, marble panels with drawings and phrases that encourage reflection. Here you can watch a video of about 10 minutes.

The confessionals, which are small simple and comfortable rooms, are situated in two chapels.

In the middle of the first chapel are the Crucifix and the ambo, while in the second there is a bright display showing some phrases from the Holy Scripture at regular intervals. Here there are confessional priests who, besides Italian, speak the most common languages.

Continuing the pathway, you come to a niche where the cloak, stick, saddle bags, and shoes of the prodigal son are abandoned. In this way, the artist Marrocco wanted to represent the son's decision to abandon evil and become a new creature. Similarly, the pilgrim who confesses and finds reconciliation returns renewed to the embrace of the Father.

The last act of the pathway of penance is the joy and gratitude for forgiveness received. Entering the Room of Thanksgiving, you can see the statue of the Risen Christ by Armando Marrocco, and a wonderful group of seagulls in flight.

The writing on the wall reads: In heaven, there will be more rejoicing in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who do not need to repent (Luke 15.7).

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