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Santa Rosa da Viterbo

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Santa Rosa da Viterbo is a late 20th century parish church at Via Santa Giovanna Elisabetta 53 in the suburban area of Tor di Quinto. A picture of the church on Wikimedia Commons is here.

The dedication is to St Rose of Viterbo.

History Edit

The parish was erected in 1962, and entrusted to the Preti del Sacro Cuore di Gesù di Bétharram who are to be found at Santa Maria dei Miracoli.

The parish used part of a convent of the Daughters of the Cross, Sisters of St Andrew (Figlie della Croce, Suore di Sant'Andrea). This it took over at the end of the Eighties, and had remodelled. The church (the former convent chapel) was begun in 1992, and completed in 1995 with the architect being Gianfranco di Loreto.

The parish passed to diocesan clergy in 2006.

The sisters now administer the rest of the convent as a pilgrims' hospice and a small residential care home, at number 25.

Exterior Edit

Layout and fabric Edit

The church has a complicated structure, owing to its conversion from part of a convent. It has a rectangular plan, of five bays. The first two bays form one structural unit, which has a tiled roof in three pitches meeting at a small rectangular flat area over the second bay. The third to fifth bays are part of the original convent complex, which carries on down the street for some distance. This has a domestic storey over the church, and hence its pitched and tiled roof is higher.

The second, third and fourth bays each have a very large round-headed window in each side, which are recessed in zones which reach up to the roofline in the second bay and up to the windows of the second storey in the third and fourth bays. These recesses are in white. The walls are otherwise in three horizontal zones. The lower parts are in cream-coloured bricks, followed by a wide band of grey reinforced concrete and then red bricks up to the rooflines. The roofs have overhanging eaves supported by angled metal struts.

The band of concrete actually supports internal side galleries.

The large windows have stained glass to an abstract design, and the two far bay windows have small rectangular windows above them in the second storey with little balconies formed of quarter-sections of spheres.

The church's sanctuary has an apse, invisible from the outside, and this is flanked by a pair of side chapels which occupy the space only as high as the level of the galleries. Each of these has a pair of rectangular stained glass windows. This ensemble occupies the fifth bay of the church.

Façade Edit

The monumental façade is rather reminiscent of corporate headquarters buildings of the Eighties. The fabric has the same three horizontal zones of contrasting materials as the side walls.

The frontage is topped by a large semi-cylindrical glass canopy inserted into the front pitch of the roof of the first bay to form a skylight. This canopy tops a large window in the actual entrance façade, and either side of this are two protruding longitudinal concrete slab piers which continue up above the roofline and which have a large rectangular aperture each at their tops. They flank an enormous cross finial, placed longitudinally.

The bottoms of these panels form the sides of the porch, which has a flat roof supporting a balcony containing a collection of pot plants. The solid balustrade of the balcony is a continuation of the central concrete stripe in the church walls. The porch is supported by a pair of thin square concrete piers.

The porch is flanked by a pair of longitudinal staircases running up to to a pair of doors near the corners of the façade. These access the church galleries. Above each door is a recessed panel in white, running up to the roofline.

Interior Edit

Nave Edit

The interior is mostly in two shades of pale pink and also white, except for the brightly coloured stained glass in the large windows which is by Eliza Viaggi.

The church has side aisles topped by galleries which have glass panel frontages. The galleries have lunette cut-outs where they cross the large windows, and are supported by square white concrete piers, two on each side. These piers have their bottom halves encased in marble to form high plinths of an irregular hexagonal cross-section (the near and far sides of each are very short). The marble is grey, but the longitudinal face of each plinth has a recessed panel in pale brown. Attached to the pier above the plinth on the near and far sides is a trapezoidal prism in pale grey with a recessed vertical rectangular panel in greenish-grey on each of its three faces.

The piers carry on above the galleries to support the ceiling, and above the gallery frontages are treated in the same way. The frontages bear bronze relief panels of the Stations of the Cross.

The aisle walls have a dado in the pale brown marble.

The ceiling is flat and featureless.

Sanctuary Edit

The sanctuary has a three-sided apse. Into it is fitted a huge ceiling light fitting in the form of a slice of a hexagonal prism, and this contains a hexagonal stained glass luminary featuring the Dove of the Holy Spirit.

The altar has a relief of The Last Supper on its frontal. Behind, the apse has been provided with mosaics. The central mosaic panel is all in silver and backs a traditional large wooden crucifix with a painted corpus. The right hand mosaic also depicts The Last Supper, and the left hand one depicts a grape-vine. Inserted into it is a round illuminated stained glass panel of an abstract design in different shades of yellow, and this surrounds the tabernacle.

Liturgy Edit

According to the Diocese, Mass is celebrated:

Weekdays 8:30, 18:30 (not July to mid September, Monday to Friday);

Sundays and Solemnities 9:00, 10:30, 12:00 (18:30 July to mid September).

The parish has only one priest, so these times are liable to change.

External links Edit

(The parish website is defunct.)

Official diocesan web-page

Italian Wikipedia page

Info.roma web-page

Beweb web-page

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