Luogo - Religious building
SANTUARIO DI SAN GABRIELE DELL'ADDOLORATA
Where Isola del Gran Sasso d'Italia (Teramo)
Millions of pilgrims visit St. Gabriel's shrine in Isola del Gran Sasso each year to see the saint's burial place and the monastic house in which he lived out his final years. The sanctuary, composed of two basilicas, rises upon the remaining of a previous Franciscan convent, built - according to tradition - by Saint Francis himself during his passage through the Abruzzi. The cloister of the ancient convent has recently been restored and brought to light precious frescoes representing the saint's history. The portal of the Franciscan church, dated 1590, was restored at the beginning of the twentieth century. The old basilica was erected in the nineteenth century when the Passionist friars settled in Isola del Gran Sasso. Here in 1859 Saint Gabriel arrived and here he died from tuberculosis three years later at the age of twenty-four. His fame of holiness spread rapidly drawing crowds of devotees and making it necessary to build a new basilica, whose construction started in 1970. The majestic structure is provided with service rooms for pilgrims, such as conference halls, exhibition halls, chapels and a wide porch. The basilica, whose plan resembles a ship, is 90 meters in length and 30 in width and is divided in four naves by elegant pillars. Six entrance door lead to the saint's crypt, which lies below the church.