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Santa Teresa del Bambin Gesù in Panfilo

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Santa Teresa del Bambin Gesù in Panfilo is a modern parish church at Via Gaspare Spontini 17 in the Pinciano district, just north-east of the Villa Borghese and near the zoo. It is dedicated to St Teresa of the Child Jesus, often known as Thérèse of Lisieux, who was a Carmelite mystic and is a Doctor of the Church . Picture of the church at Wikimedia Commons. [1]

The parish was administered by the Discalced Carmelites.


The church was designed by Gugliemo Palombi, and built in 1932 over the catacombs of San Panfilo which give their name to the district. In 1952 the parish was established, and about the same time the church became the centre of devotion in Rome to St Teresa. This is because her former pilgrimage shrine church of Santa Teresa del Bambin Gesù al Gianicolo (now deconsecrated) was abandoned by the Discalced Carmelites for a new Generalate at Santa Teresa d'Avila, which is nearby.

St Teresa has not been fortunate with her Roman churches, because the parish here was suppressed in 2011.


It is a rectangular building with a vaulted crypt, nave, side aisles, a segmental apse and two segmental side apses in place of transepts. The fabric is of stone throughout, with a tiled roof. Because of the crypt the entrance is approached by a flight of stairs, and the nave extends one bay further forward beyond the aisles at the entrance end. The exterior of the church is of two storeys throughout, these being separated by an entablature running all the way round (except on the apses, where it changes to a mere string course). The entrance façade has a simple doorway with a raised lintel supported by a pair of double volutes on top of ribbed pilasters slightly sunk, and on either side are panels enclosing large blocks of stone laid so as to give a ladder effect. This decoration is repeated on the sides of the entrance bay, and over the aisle entrance doors. The first storey of the façade has a pair of Corinthian pilasters flanking each corner, and in the centre is a large rectangular window with a segmental pediment, its own pair of Corinthian pilasters and a little balustrade as a balcony. The roofline has a full entablature with architrave, blank frieze and cornice, the last projecting with corbels. The triangular pediment contains a coat-of-arms. The aisle rooflines are horizontal with balustrades and an urn on each outer corner. There is a bellcote attached to the other end of the left hand aisle, this having a triangular pediment as well.


Over the main altar is a painting of St Teresa scattering roses by Ballerini, above which in the apse is a fresco of the same saint by Morgante. The side apses are chapels, dedicated to Our Lady of Carmel and the Sacred Heart. The former has a shrine containing the mantella worn by St Teresa aged fifteen before she entered the convent, when she tried to persuade the Pope to agree to her becoming a nun before the canonical lower age limit. The altars in these chapels were rescued from the church of Santa Maria in Macello Martyrum when it was demolished.

External linksEdit

Official diocesan web-page

Italian Wikipedia page

Info.roma web-page

Carmelite web-page

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