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Ivrea, Italy (1016)


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

Maria Consolata


In 1016 the Virgin appeared to a Benedictine monk, Arduino (formerly Earl and Marquis of Ivrea, who in 1002 was elected king of Italy from the intolerant principles of the German yoke) as he lay seriously ill in his castle, commanding him to build three churches in his honor: Belmonte (over which the Benedictines had to officiate), Turin (under the title of Consolation) and Monferrato.


The history of Belmonte and its shrine are always closely related to those of the upper-story Canavese. The oldest of the population of this high back to the first millennium BC, when groups of farmers and cattle breeders were ab dwell among the rocks in the southern village of which they found abundant material remains, now exhibited at the Archaeological Museum of Cuorgné .

Even the Romans, who at the foot of the mountain, St. Ponzo, had one of their main settlements, have left no archaeological traces, but especially in the barbaric period that Belmonte is of considerable importance to strategic position: a village-fortress, surrounded by three sets of walls, crowns the summit, to affirm the presence Lombard Upper Canavese.

Abundant and unique finds, especially metal, come to light, while a fibula cross testifies to the advent of the Christian faith. Slowly they illuminate the darkness of history, figures and characters begin to emerge: among all Arduinus, which still partly legendary stories are interwoven with those of Belmonte.

In 1016, towards the end of his life, the Virgin miraculously appeared to him to restore his failing health in exchange for the construction of a church in Belmonte, something done promptly six days later with the assistance of his nephew William Volpiano, abbot of Fruttuaria. Even the most ancient documents confirm that already in the eleventh century there was a Benedictine cell, depending on the monastery of St. Thomas of Busano, under the jurisdiction and protection of that of San Benigno of Fruttuaria.

The first buildings in this era arose near the convent. And again the Madonna appeared miraculously in 1326 to Bishop Guido of Asti, first-rate figure in the history Canavese for his work for peace among the feudal lords; for his involvement with the monastery was settled there goods and noble maidens of origin Asti.

In 1477 the abbey of Fruttuaria, which always depended Belmonte was built in commendam, the monastery has a negative impact and Benedictine, almost abandoned to themselves, were devoid of religious and temporal aid. In 1602, following the decrees of the Council of Trent, which forbade the female convents outside the city walls, the Benedictines were forced to leave Belmonte was their intention to bring the statue miraculous, but the sudden darkness, let it be ' Madonna's intention to remain in Belmonte. Their place was taken by the Friars Minor of St. Francis.

Over the centuries they gradually enlarged the convent, completely rebuilt the church (1620), making it increasingly rich in works of art, larger and more beautiful, encircled the top of the mountain with the chapels of the Stations of the Cross (1712) and, what is More importantly, made ??it the spiritual center of the Canavese. The convent was suppressed in the French Revolution, it also tried to destroy the statue of the Madonna, in Valperga scope for ridicule, but a series of exceptional events prevented the work was brought to completion. Even the buildings were auctioned in 1805 but were purchased by the abbot personally Valperga James Masino them gave back to the Franciscans. Again the law was abolished in 1866 with Ricasoli, was immediately claimed as private property and reopened as early as 1872, fastest-selling destination for pilgrims and a steady stream of faithful.

The brothers remained isolated there but took part in the life of the people, as well as with the exercise of the priesthood, with the help, advice and hospitality granted to those who always wanted. They found refuge in their convent all persecuted during difficult times in our history. Important chapters in the life of the Sanctuary are those of the solemn ceremonies of the coronation of the Virgin: the first is from 1788 and on this occasion, the Vatican Chapter, examined the evidence of miracles, officially recognized the supernatural virtues of the statue housed there. A hundred years later, he saw the coronation church renovated: enlarged and embellished the interior with frescoes of great artistic value on the most important episodes of the life of the Sanctuary, completely rebuilt the facade. It dates back to the same period the construction of the piers with the mysteries of the Rosary along the traditional route of pedestrian Valperga, while more recent memorial to the Hub Pens Canavese and the statue of St. Francis on the highest point of the hill with his arms raised to heaven to sing the praises of God and thanks for asking the inhabitants of the lands below.


The Shrine of Belmonte (Valperga Canavese - Turin)
10087 Valperga Canavese (Turin) - tel.0124/617204


Volumes are available on the Sanctuary and the quarterly magazine "The Echo of the Shrine of Belmonte"


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