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Rome:  The Basilica of St. Augustine (the Relics of St. Monica and Sculpture of Madonna del Parto)

About the Church of Sant’ Agostino:

Saint Monica’s relics are preserved here in the Church, not far from Piazza Navona and aptly named after her son, Saint Augustine. Despite the rather plain exterior, the interior of the Church is magnificent, with several great works of art by artists such as Rafael and Carvaggio, and the sculpted figure of the Blessed Virgin Mary in the form of Our Lady of Safe Delivery.  The interior offers a great opportunity for a break from the busy sights of Rome and view some magnificent works of art. The church has a beauty that will surprise you if you only judge it from the outside (as is the case of so many old churches).

The life of Saint Monica:

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Saint Monica is one of the most admired saints. Married to a man who was a drunkard and abusive, she is an inspiration to many who pray for their wayward family members. Through her prayers and her patient example, she finally converted her husband from his pagan lifestyle to become a Christian.

One of their sons went on to become Saint Augustine of Hippo, but not before succumbing to the same worldly temptations as his father. Monicas’ prayers and pleading finally resulted in him converting. It is from his writings that we learn of the trials and tribulations that Saint Monica endured during her life.  His tomb can be found in Pavia, Italy.

We celebrate the Feast of Saint Monica on August 27.


The tomb of Saint Monica:

Tomb of Saint Monica in the Basilica of St. Augustine in Rome
Tomb of Saint Monica

Of course the tomb of Saint Monica is the main attraction here, in a chapel to the left of the high altar. Unfortunately, although she is such a popular saint, not many people are aware that her tomb is in this church. As a result, you normally do not have to worry about crowds.

But we highly recommend that you include this church in your Rome travels.


Sculpture of Madonna del Parto in the Church of Sant’ Agostino:

Our Lady of Safe Delivery
Our Lady of Safe Delivery

One of the features of the Church is in a niche by the entrance—the Madonna del Parto, (the Madonna of Safe Delivery) the Blessed Virgin Mary holding the child Jesus, carved by Jacopo Sansovino in 1521. This is considered one of his greatest works.  In this case it shows the Blessed Mother holding the baby Jesus.

Many women offer their prayers here in hopes of ensuring a safe childbirth.  Hundreds of silver ex-votos arrayed around the niche attest to her many interventions deemed miraculous by those who lives were saved. Silver hearts, plaques and baby announcements remind women that their courageous acceptance of motherhood holds a special place in the heart of the Madonna and Child.

Particularly moving are the modern offerings such as the pink and blue bows used to adorn a house where a baby has just been born. Photographs abound, with dozens of radiant faces of beaming mothers and babies tacked to the walls of the shrine.


We celebrate the Feast of Madonna del Parto on October 9; however, the feast of the Madonna of childbirth lasts five days. The first three days consist of preparation, like Advent before Christmas or the months of gestation. Participants attend liturgies, rosaries and penance services while awaiting the big day.

(This image has several other variations:  You will also find a fresco of Madonna del Parto in Monterci, Italy which shows a visibly pregnant Virgin Mary.)


Other saints here in the Church of Saint Augustine in Rome:

In addition, you will find the tombs of Saint Tryphon, to whom the original church was dedicated, along with Saints Respicius and Nymphas also under the high altar. The martyrs Thomas of Villanova, John of Saint Faconda and Claire of Montefalco are here as well.

the interior offers a great opportunity for a break from the busy sights of Rome and view some magnificent works of art. The church has a beauty that will surprise you if you only judge it from the outside.

Groups may be able to celebrate their own Mass here (or their priest can con-celebrate). You will obviously need to have permission in advance.


The Church of Church of Sant’ Agostino is also one of the station churches during Lent; in this case, the week of Ash Wednesday.


Finding the Church of Saint Augustine in Rome:

As mentioned above, it is a short walk from Piazza Navona. For help finding your way around, we suggest the “Little Black Book of Rome”  It is organized by location rather than alphabetically like so many guide books.  And we also suggest you carry a “Streetwise Map of Rome” for easy navigating.


Address: Via della Scrofa, 80, 00186 Roma RM, Italy

Tel:  +39 06 688 01 962.

email:  info@agostiniani.it

Click here for the community website dedicated to the Church of Saint Augustine in Rome.

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2 thoughts on “Rome: The Basilica of St. Augustine (the Relics of St. Monica)”

  1. A Greeting of peace!

    A blessed day to you brothers and sister to the Lord, We would like to request the relic of our Saint to the Lord Santa Monica, in theca with a Certificate attached that it can be publicly venerated at the time of the end of the pandemic. spreading devotion to her in our area, Because she is our Patroness here in our Congregation, Because we want to revive and strengthen the hearts of other people especially to the bedridden now during the pandemic, and to mission such as Santa Monica’s non -surrender to Follow and Serve Our Lord Jesus Christ. Second one is I am a promoter of Living Rosary Group and our Patron is St. Monica, that’s why I decide to write a Request for a relic , I hope you will grant our Request and to our Group here. we promise you that the Relic that you will provide will be preserved as our treasure and his inheritance to us. we will wait for your Fast response about this matter. Thank you very much and may the Lord bless us always.

    Jayson B. Reyes

    Contact Number: 0997-734-0001

    Caveza Street
    Candating, Arayat 2012
    Pampanga, Philippines.

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