"He nurtured a longstanding desire to travel...his fervour grew, thinking he might visit other sanctuaries". We are following in the footsteps of Pope Gregory XIV who travelled through Umbria in 1841 to reach Loreto.
The journey made by his Holiness Pope Gregory XVI in 1841 - The journey made by his Holiness Pope Gregory XVI in 1841
The journey made by his Holiness Pope Gregory XVI in 1841
Arriving in Narni, head to the Cattedrale di San Giovenale, named after the first bishop and patron saint of the town. Enjoy a walk through the town's streets, which at the time of the Pope's journey were filled with silk banners and hand-embroidered tapestries.
Head for Terni and once there, visit the Cattedrale di Santa Maria Assunta which was built on the remains of a building dating back to the mid-6th century, on the wishes of the bishop S. Anastasio. Although you won't have a carriage, head towards the former Augustinian convent of San Pietro where the Holy Father stayed. You can visit the monastero delle "scalze in S. Teresa", just outside the town.
Head towards Spoleto, stopping off first at the church of S. Filippo Neri, building of which began in 1640, following the designs of local architect Loreto Scelli. Reaching the Cattedrale di Santa Maria Assunta, head towards the chapel of the Santissima icona (Chapel of the holy icon), a Byzantine work from the 11th - 12th century, donated in 1185 by the Emperor Frederick Barbarossa as a sign of peace. Leaving the Cathedral, head towards the Arco di Druso, (Arch of Drusus) in the area surrounding Piazza del Mercato, which was erected on the Spoleto senate's initiative, in the year 23 A.D., in honour of the princes Drusus and Germanicus. In the complex of the former caserma Minervio (Minervio Barracks), together with the amphitheatre and the Church of Santi Stefano e Tommaso, visit the former Monastero della Stella, and the remains of its beautiful cloister with a double row of loggias. Returning towards the upper part of the town, take a moment to admire the beautiful Palazzo Pianciani, an aristocratic residence in a neo-classical style, today home to the Banca Popolare di Spoleto that lies in an area that has been urbanised since Roman times.
Nearby, look for the small early medieval church dedicated to S. Agata, which together with its convent, is today home to the Museo Archeologico Nazionale (National Archaeological Museum).