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-Tour of the seven Basilicas-



In 1552 the tradition of pilgrimage was regulated by Saint Philip Neri who, in order to hinder the heathen rites of the Roman Carnival, promotes some days for  devotion to the holy places of the city with meditations on the Passion of Jesus.

It took two or three days to do the long way, in case of two days,  the first day was dedicated to visit Saint Peters Basilica while the other to go to the other churches.

This custom was thought and required by the saint (who took an old custom felt in disuse) to induce the Roman people to devote themselves to religion, it wasn’t a procession but a real journey ( a day trip) with times of prayer and fun.

On last Thursday before Lent, leaving from Saint Peter’s Basilica, where they gathered, the pilgrims went to Saint Paul Outside the Walls, Saint Sebastian Outside the Walls, St. John Lateran, Holy Cross in Jerusalem, Saint Lawrence Outside the Walls, St. Mary Major saying the seven  penitentiary psalms to beg forgiveness for the seven deadly sins and beg the seven contrary  virtues.

The number seven of the churches to visit is related to the seven legs of Jesus during the Passion, to the seven effusions of Christ’s blood, to the seven words of Christ on the on the cross, to the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit, to the seven Sacraments and the seven act of mercy.


The four Major Basilicas

After visiting Saint Peter’s basilica, run across Via della Conciliazione and arrive in front of  Ponte Vittorio Emanuele II (Victor Emmanuel II Bridge), at the bus stop, in front of the hospital Santo Spirito (Holy Ghost), by bus (n 23), after 20 minutes you stay at Saint Paul Outside the Walls, from the Saint Paul’s Basilica, not far there is the Via Ostiense, near here line B of the underground  will take you to Termini Station.

There take the line A of the underground, San Giovanni direction and after a few minutes you will stay at the place in front of the Saint John’s Basilica.

St. Mary Major is the most central of all basilicas. You can arrive at it from the Colosseum or from Termini Station or thanks to the line B of the underground.


The three Minor Basilicas

If you come from St. John Lateran or Holy Cross in Jerusalem, take the tram 3 and you arrive at Saint Lawrence Outside the Walls.
Whenever you are the best way to go to
Saint Sebastian Outside the Walls is by taxi.

From Saint John Lateran it takes 5 minutes on foot, or take the tram 3 and your arrive at Holy Cross in Jerusalem.


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