Places of the Spirit

Visiting the Nera Valley, you will come across places of spirituality.

If you come to the Sanctuary of Saint Rita of Cascia, you must visit Roccaporena, the birthplace of Saint Rita, 5 minutes from Cascia. Here, you can immerse yourself in the life of Rita, visiting her family home, the house where she lived with her husband and sons, the garden of miracles (reproduction of the garden where the relative of Rita found the rose and two figs in winter), the Lazaretto (hospital for lepers) and the Rock, the Church of St. Montano, where the saint was married at the age of 15 to Paolo Mancini.

There are really very many places to discover, including the church of the Our Lady of Castelvecchio, in Monteleone di Spoleto, which is among the oldest in the area.

One of the most important local Franciscan centres, however, is certainly the church of St. Lawrence in Borgo Cerreto, on the Nera bridge.

From there it is not far to the town of Cerreto di Spoleto, where there is the hermitage of Our Lady of the Star, formerly Hermitage of the Holy Cross.

In the Piedivalle district of Preci lies the austere abbey of St. Eutizio (V century), considered the cradle of Western cenobitic (that is, community) monasticism.

A few minutes away, there is Castelvecchio, where you can find the church of Madonna della Cona (also known as "Madonna de Lu Posatoro"), which dates back to the XVI century. Here, on March 9, citizens and passers-by gather for the Feast of the Icon or Feast of Souls.

It is worthwhile visiting the town of Norcia with its basilica of St. Benedict, patron saint of Europe and patriarch of Western monasticism.

Meanwhile, in the Cascian district of Castel Santa Maria, there is the church of Our Lady of the Snows, built to a project by Bramante (a project that the artist had first presented for St. Peter’s, but which was rejected).

The imposing church of the Madonna Bianca, at Ancarano in Norcia, is situated in one of the most picturesque valleys of the Nera Valley: Valley Castoriana. The original building is from the fourteenth century. At its side, an external shrine niche is decorated with frescoes by painters of the Sparapane workshop.

For more details and learn about all the places to visit, contact the Tourist Service of Valnerina www.lavalnerina.it

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