Cappella delle Suore di Betania dello Spirito Santo is a mid 20th century convent chapel at Via Achille Mauri 14 in the Della Vittoria suburban district.

History Edit

The literature describes this convent as originally belonging to the Suore Betania dello Spirito Santo, which may be a mistake. No such congregation exists nowadays.

The complex was built in 1959, and consecrated in 1960. Its importance is because it was the first full commission for an ecclesiastical building in Rome awarded to Silvo Galizia. This important and innovative architect had already been involved in the completion of Santa Monica degli Agostiniani, but had not being involved in its original design.

Apparently the convent began life as a Generalate and a retirement home (casa di riposo).

Nowadays it is a hall of residence for university students (Collegio Sacra Famiglia) run by the Suore Collegine della Sacra Famiglia which is a congregation based in Sicily.

Appearance Edit

The chapel is an integral part of the convent edifice, which is L-shaped. The wing nearest the road has three main storeys with an additional attic storey, but the site slopes down steeply at the back and the far wing has two hidden bottom storeys below the chapel. The latter is at the level of the ground floor of the near wing.

The chapel occupies eight bays of the third storey of the far wing, which runs parallel to the street. From the Via della Rimessola to the east, the aspect is of a very straightforward and rather ugly modernist building of the era, with the reinforced concrete framework left exposed. The chapel bays are distinguished by red brick infill, with a small horizontal rectangular tucked into the top left hand corner of each bay.

However, round the other side, facing the Via Achille Mauri, the architect gave a hint of the playfulness with forms and angles that he was to develop. The chapel wall here is in stone, with small vertical slit windows arranged in four horizontal rows. The wall is actually at a very slight angle to the main wall above, and diverges towards the end of the wing on the right. There, a floating canopy in the shape of a very thin right angle covers an external entrance, accessed by a flight of stairs.

External links Edit

Official diocesan web-page

Info.roma web-page

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