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Cappella dei Dehoniani is a mid 20th century convent chapel at Via Leone XIII 459 in the Aurelio quarter.

The huge convent now includes an hotel, which has this address. The convent premises now uses the address of the back door, which is Via del Casale di San Pio V 20.

History Edit

The Priests of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, nicknamed the Dehoniani after their founder Léon Dehon, were founded at Saint-Quentin in northern France in 1888.

However, the founder wished for his congregation to have an international missionary charism, and so established the Generalate or headquarters at Rome in 1892. This moved to the present site of the church of Sacro Cuore di Cristo Re in 1927, now a parish which the Dehonians still administer. 

The project for a huge new Generalate was mooted after the Second World War, and completed in 1953. However, in common with other Roman Catholic religious congregations, the boom in vocations that the Dehonians were enjoying back then ceased abruptly in the later 20th century. As a result, the complex became too big and part of it is now an hotel called the Villa Aurelia.

 As well as the Generalate, the complex also houses a house of studies called the Collegio Internazionale "Leone Dehon". 

Appearance Edit

The convent is a huge four-storey red brick edifice, on the plan of three sides of a rectangle. The main entrance is in the middle of the outer face of the long side, and two shorter wings run back from the corners to either side.

The chapel is a full-sized church edifice, on the major axis of the convent so that you enter it by going straight ahead from the main entrance. It has a basilical plan, having a central nave and side aisles of five bays followed by a transept of the same width.

The chapel stands away from the main convent block. However, two enclosed corridors, elevated on arcades, run from the latter down both sides of the nave to access sacristy and ancillary accommodation which abuts the transept at both sides and also runs round the back. These elements mean that the fabric of the chapel proper is mostly concealed.

The aisle roofs are high, and singly pitched and tiled. The low central nave walls are taken up on each side by a row of five large windows. The main roof is gable pitched and tiled, with the ridge-lines forming a Latin cross.

There is an enclosed brick porch having a single round-headed entrance, and above this is a single pitched roof at the same height as the aisle roofs.

External links Edit

Congregation's website

Article on Generalate

Info.roma web-page

Hotel website

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