Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Pilgrimage to San Gabriele

Another stop of ours while in Abruzzo is the Sanctuary of San Gabriele, patron saint of Abruzzo and of Catholic youth. Not a far drive, a little over an hour from Anthony's family, but a very scenic route even on the autostrade passing by small towns high on the hills and with the Gran Sasso always in view.

Our trip usually includes a stop into the original sanctuary, lighting a candle and saying a prayer. Then we walk over to the modern building next door which is the new sanctuary built in the early 1970s that can accommodate about 10,000 visitors. The original church has always been more appealing to both Anthony and I with its high ceilings, gorgeous frescoes and marble fixtures. We hope to continue with our annual pilgrimage to San Gabriele and that it is something Sofia looks forward to as well.

Anthony and Sofia outside the sanctuary

The gorgeous paintings above the altar

Sofia and I outside the original sanctuary of San Gabriele

Teetering around on the cobblestone

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