San Romualdo Abate a Monte Migliore is a later 20th century parish church at Via Nazzareno Strampelli 113, which is a rural location at the settlement of Monte Migliore on the Via Laurentina on the southern edge of the municipal area. The zone is Castel di Decima. A picture of the church on Wikimedia Commons is here.
The church itself is not in the village, but to the south on a country lane surrounded by fields. It is the southernmost of Rome's parish churches, and about as rural as you can get.
The dedication is to St Romuald.
Apparently this was a redundant set of farm buildings when a small community of Suore Dominecane Ancelle del Signore from Pistoia was founded here in 1963. Their chapel provided a Mass centre for what was then a completely rural area. The local parish was Santa Maria Assunta e San Michele a Castel Romano, which covered an enormous area.
However, illegal subdivision of farmland produced distinct and rather isolated suburban settlemets -although not near the convent. In response, a curacy was set up in 1974 and the sisters moved out to one of these suburbs, Monte Migliore on the Via Laurentina at number 1800. There they moved into an unremarkable building and ran an infants' school. This convent is now the Generalate (headquarters) of the small congregation.
The present church is allegedly a conversion of one of the farm buildings, done in 1974. The parish was set up in 1979.
The first priest was one of the Oblati della Madonna del Divono Amore, based at the Santuario della Madonna del Divino Amore. Apart from 1996 to 2011, they have been in charge.
In 2015, there was a restoration of the interior with the provision of artworks by Barbara Femia.
Layout and fabric Edit
This is a very simple single-naved edifice of six bays, in what seems to be brick and with a pitched and tiled roof having overhanging eaves. The walls are rendered in a light yellow, with a grey dado.
Each side wall has six small vertical rectangular windows.
The parish offices and ancillary accommodation is attached to the back of the church, in a two-storey flat-roofed block higher than the church itself. It incorporates the church's little transverse rectangular apse.
The entrance façade has a doorway, with a floating tiled canopy having a single pitch and a little hip at each end. The door is approached by a short flight of three stairs.
Above the door is a round window, containing the dove of the Holy Spirit in stained glass. This has a thin raised yellow frame.
There is a plinth of grey stone blocks, and the corners have long-and-short work in the same stone. Either side of the entrance the stone is laid regularly to give the impression of two thin pilasters.
The wall either side of the entrance is rendered in creamy white and bears a pair of terracotta relief plaques bearing the sacred initials of Jesus and Mary. However, above the entrance and in the gable it is rendered in light grey.
The simple interior is in white, with a high dado in pale brown topped by a wooden plank cornice. The floor is also in pale brown rectangular tiles, except for a central band along the major axis which looks as if it is in red Sicilian jasper.
The sanctuary apse has a large traditional painted crucifix, set before a 2015 mural by Barbara Fenia which converts it into a Calvary. The style is rather naïvely realistic, and the work is the best thing in the church.
The tabernacle is to the right of the altar, and is a cruciform work in copper.
The church has two statues by Barbara Fenia, one of St Romuald and the other of "Our Lady of Farmers" (Madonna dei Coltivatori). The latter is a devotion from the earliest days of the former convent here.
Getting here Edit
Bus number 703 passes the church, starting from Agricoltura in EUR.
According to the Diocese (July 2018), Mass is celebrated:
Weekdays 18:00 (19:00 in summer);
Sundays and Solemnities 9:30, 10:30, 11:30, 18:30 (19:00 in summer).
External Mass centres Edit
San Pietro Martire al Casale della Solfarata (not San Pietro Chanel -this is an error.)
(The Diocese also has a Cappella Tenuta Agricola at Via della Mandriola 10, but this is a gated driveway and there is no sign of public access.)
(The parish website is defunct.)