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Mount Figogna, Ceranesi, Italy (1490)

   
History

Traditionally Approved

40 - 999 1400 - 1499
1000 - 1099 1500 - 1599
1100 - 1199 1600 - 1699
1200 - 1299 1700 - 1799
1300 - 1399 1800 - 1899

Vatican Approved
Bishop Approved
Coptic Approved
Approved for Faith Expression
Apparitions to Saints
Unapproved Apparitions

Nostra Signora della Guardia (Our Lady of the Guard)

Nostra Signora della Guardia

Summary

According to tradition, on August 29, 1490 the Virgin Mary appeared to a peasant called Benedetto Pareto and asked him to build a chapel on the mountain. Pareto was surprised and replied that he was only a poor man and would not be able to do that. But the Virgin Mary exhorted him by saying “Do not be afraid!”

Nevertheless, Pareto went home and did not speak with anyone about the apparition. A few days later he felt from a tree and was seriously injured. The Virgin Mary appeared to him again and he was miraculously healed. The event convinced him to speak about the apparition and seek help to build the chapel.

Timeline

Aug 29, 1490

According to tradition the Virgin Mary appeared to a peasant called Benedetto Pareto and asked him to build a chapel on the mountain. Pareto was surprised and replied that he was only a poor man and would not be able to do that. But the Virgin Mary exhorted him by saying “Do not be afraid!” Nevertheless, Pareto went home and did not speak with anyone about the apparition.

July 1, 1490

A few days later he felt from a tree and was seriously injured. The Virgin Mary appeared to him again and he was miraculously healed. The event convinced him to speak about the apparition and seek help to build the chapel.

 

According to tradition, the first chapel was built by Pareto himself in the same place of apparition. This is a small rectangular building with a wooden roof, now included inside a new chapel.

1528-30

Due to the increasing flow of pilgrims a shrine was built (on the top of the mountain), thanks to a donation of the noble family Ghersi.


1889

In the second half of 19th century a new shrine was built. Some troubles rose, both technical and financial, but at last the church was completed in 1889 and inaugurated on May 26 1890.

1903

In the following years the number of pilgrims continued to increase and the old church was demolished to make room for a new "hospice" for the pilgrims and guesthouse.

March 11, 1915

The Genoese Pope Benedict XV assigned to the church the title of Basilica. Then, in 1917, the same pope built in the gardens of Vatican City a small temple, where a statue of N.S. della Guardia (given to the Pope by Genoese people) was arranged.

1929

A characteristic train (the “Autoguidovia”) was constructed, allowing pilgrims to reach the shrine from the bottom of the valley (this was then the only alternative was to go on foot).

1963

A new road for vehicles was constructed (provincial road No 52 from Bolzaneto, 11 km long), and the “Autoguidovia”, considered uneconomic, was closed in 1967.

Sept 22, 1985

The shrine was visited by Pope John Paul II.

May 18, 2008

The shrine was visited by Pope Benedict XVI.

Messages

The Virgin Mary asked Benedetto Pareto to build a chapel on the mountain. Pareto was surprised and replied that he was only a poor man and would not be able to do that. But the Virgin Mary exhorted him by saying “Do not be afraid!”


Miracles, Cures, and Signs


A few days later Pareto felt from a tree and was seriously injured. The Virgin Mary appeared to him again and he was miraculously healed. The event convinced him to speak about the apparition and seek help to build the chapel.


Approval

This apparition receives traditional approval from the Church. On March 11, 1915 the Genoese Pope Benedict XV assigned to the church the title of Basilica. Then, in 1917, the same pope built in the gardens of Vatican City a small temple, where a statue of N.S. della Guardia (given to the Pope by Genoese people) was arranged. On September 22, 1985 the shrine was visited by Pope John Paul II. On May 18, 2008 the shrine was visited by Pope Benedict XVI.


Books and Videos

Giovanni Meriana , Guida ai santuari della Liguria (Guide of shrines in Liguria), Sagep Editrice publisher, Genoa (Italy), 1990


Links

Shrine of N.S. della Guardia Official Website
History of the shrine
Speech of Pope John Paul II when he visited the shrine in 1985 (Italian)

 
   
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