About the Basilica of Santa Maria Monte Berico:
In the early 15th century, Veneto was suffering from a terrible plague that lasted for several years. According to tradition, the Blessed Virgin first appeared on hill near the city to a peasant woman named Vincenza Pasini on March 7, 1426. as she was going to bring lunch to her husband who worked in his vineyard on Monte Berico. The Blessed Virgin Mary told her:
“I am the Virgin Mary, the Mother of Christ who died on the cross for the salvation of men. Please go and tell the people of Vicenza in my name to build a church in this place in my honor if you want to get back your health, otherwise the plague will not stop.”
But no one believed her story, and the plague continued. Two years later, on August 1, 1428, the Blessed Mother appeared to her again in the same place, repeating the invitation to build a church and once again stated the promise to save Vicenza from the plague. The situation continued to worsen and finally the people took it serviusly and began building a church around the end of August. Immediately cases of the plague began to decrease. The church was completed in only three months..
The original basilica has been restored repeatedly during the centuries, sometimes with famous architects such as Palladio, Piovene and Miglioranza.
The church itself is free to visit and contains a number of artworks, including “The Supper of St Gregory the Great”, a mural painting of Paolo Caliari that hangd on the rear wall of the refectory. It’s an extremely large oil painting on canvas measuring 28.8 feet by 14 feet.
There are several Masses daily.
Traveling to Monte Berico:
Vicenza is about 50 miles west of Venice, so it can be an easy day trip if you don’t plan to stay in Vicenza. There is convenient train service from Venice: the trip takes about one hour and 15 minutes. You can get train schedules and buy tickets here.
Address: Viale Dieci Giugno, 87, 36100 Vicenza VI
Tel: +39 0444559411
Click here for the official website of the Basilica of Santa Maria Monte Berico