The Basilica di Santa Maria degli Angeli in Porziuncola in Assisi was built in the Renaissance period and houses, among other things, the Porziuncola, the ancient, originally Benedictine chapel, where Saint Francis founded the Order of the Franciscans in 1209, after a meeting in Rome with the then Pope Innocenzo III. Saint Francis would also eventually breathe his last here.
Santa Maria degli Angeli in Porziuncola Church Assisi
Address, opening hours and entrance fee
Address: Piazza della Porziuncola – Santa Maria degli Angeli, Assisi, Italy. Telephone: +39 (0)75812273. Opening Hours: The church is open from 06:15 to 20:00, but tourists can only visit between 07:30 and 18:00. In August it is also open from 21.00 to 23.00. The rose garden is open from 7.30 to 12.30 from 14.30 to 19.00. Closed: Never. Entrance fee: Free.
The Porziuncola is the site where San Francesco spent much of his life and eventually died. The Chapel originally belonged to the Benedictine Monks of Subasio. The name has its origins in the region itself, which was called Portiuncula.
After the Porziuncola had fallen into disrepair, it was restored (1207-8) thanks to Saint Francis himself. The saint also had the San Damiano and the San Pietro alla Spina churches restored.
It was also in the Porziuncola that Chiara di Favarone di Offreduccio received her habit from St. Francis on March 28, 2011, and founded the Order of the Poor Clares.
On August 1st, 1216 San Francesco had a vision here in which Jesus granted him the indulgence of the Perdono d’Assisi. Pope Honorius III confirmed this and believers can now come here on the first two days of August for the indulgence. Initially, this could only be received in the Sant Maria degli Angeli Church, but it is now possible in all Franciscan churches, and all the parish churches in Assisi.
The Porziuncola is now part of the Basilica di Santa Maria degi Angeli and is located right under the dome of this church.
The day St. Francis died is October 3, 1226. Each year, on this date, there is a celebration in his honour.
The Chiesa di Santa Maria degli Angeli is one of the largest churches in the world, with its length of 126 meters, width of 65 and height of 75 meters.
In a glass display case near the Transito, the belt of St. Francis is on display.
The basilica makes an extra beautiful impression because it is located a bit outside the city walls and is therefore not surrounded by other buildings.
Works of art
Domenico Bruschi painted the inside of the Transito. The work is titled “The Death and Burial of Saint Francis.” The exterior is graced by a fresco by Giovanni di Pietro.
At the back of the Porziuncola is a (damaged) fresco depicting the “Crucifixion”.
The terracotta “Saint Francis” was made in 1490 by Andrea della Robbia.
Outside the basilica, where there was a forest in which St. Francis and his followers used to live, there is now a rose garden. According to tradition, this is where the Saint is said to have rolled around naked among the thorns, in order to resist temptation. The Cappella delle Rose is also here.
The Porziuncola Museum is located in a building older than the basilica itself. The collection consists mainly of 13th and 14th century paintings and relics.