Santa Gemma Galgani a Monte Sacro is a later 20th century parish church at Via Monte Meta in the Monte Sacro quarter. It should not be confused with Santa Gemma Galgani a Casalotti , which is in the Casalotti district and is a parish church of the Porto Santa Rufina diocese. A picture of the church on Wikimedia Commons is here. (Note that this is of a subsidiary building.)

The dedication is to St Gemma Galgani.

History Edit

The parish was erected in 1975, and the church completed in 1988. The architect was Aldo Aloysi.

Exterior of churchEdit

The main church building has a basically square plan, with the major axis from entrance to altar on a diagonal. An ancillary block attaches to the far side of the near left diagonal wall, and this runs perpendicular to the wall towards the Viale Adriatico.

The fabric is in reinforced concrete, with red brick infill.

The roof is flat with deep and overhanging eaves, on two levels and with three zones. The two lower zones are triangular, and their rooflines occupy the rear two walls on either side of the altar and the outer halves of the two front walls, either side of the entrance. At the halfway points of the front walls mentioned, there are two enormous vertical concrete slabs and the central, higher roof section occupies the roofline over the entrance between them. This higher section has an irregular pentagonal shape, and runs back to a point at the corner behind the altar.

The corner of the building at the entrance is truncated, so that the entrance façade is three-sided beneath this higher roof section. It has two storeys, separated by a flat-roofed triangular concrete canopy which occupies the truncated angle and which has a dedicatory inscription on its fascia, either side of the angle. At the angle there is a single support pillar, square with incised corners.

There are two entrance doorways, and above the canopy two corresponding large stained glass windows. There is a pair of thin concrete pilasters at the obtuse angles, and on the outer sides two pairs of thin vertical strip windows with concrete frames. The rest of the entrance façade is infilled with red brick, and the walls on the other side of the concrete slabs is in blank red brickwork.

The walls either side of the altar are treated differently. There are two horizontal zones separated by a concrete string-course, and just either side of the altar the walls are of red brick again and are brought forward by another pair of vertical steps (these ones without concrete slabs). Above the string course on either side of the angle is a concrete-framed vertical slit window, and on the actual angle of the roof above the altar is a stumpy solid concrete flèche bearing a large cross of metal rods with open rings on the three extremities. On the other sides of the steps the walls bear two sets each of five vertical strip windows in concrete frames above the string course, and fire-escape doors below.

Exterior of annexeEdit

The subsidiary building in the Wikimedia photo is actually on the Viale Adriatico, the main street in the area, and presents the public façade of the church. It is the end of the ancillary block running from the near left hand side wall of the church.

There is no entrance in this frontage. It has a horizontal roofline with very deep eaves in grey bearing a dedicatory inscription, and is in red brick with a horizontal grey concrete string course dividing it into two equal storeys. A campanile occupies the centre and rises above the roofline, being two rectangular concrete pilasters facing each other like the sides of a ladder and joined at the top. The bells are hung between these pilasters, which pass through a triangular canopy occupying the central section of the string course. A pair of concrete pilasters runs from ground to eaves on either side of the campanile, and these enclose two windows each, one on each storey. Below the canopy is a mosaic of a bonfire, and in front of this is a bronze statue of St Gemma Galgani. Above the canopy is a mosaic of Christ in glory.


The interior is a single space, with the concrete frame and red brick infill left exposed to match the exterior. The converging beams supporting the central section of the roof are visible in the ceiling, and are supported by a pair of free-standing square concrete piers flanking the sanctuary

There are two modern triptych paintings on the walls to the left and right of these piers, one of the Ascension of Christ and the other showing his Nativity, Baptism and Resurrection.

A shrine to St Gemma is at the near end of the far left diagonal wall, and this has a painting derived from a famous photo of her.

Liturgy Edit

Mass is celebrated:

Weekdays 8:30, 18:30 (a single Mass at 19:00 in July and August);

Sundays and Solemnities 8:30, 10:30, 12:00, 18:30 (8:30, 11:00 and 19:00 in July and August).

There is Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament on Thursdays from 17:30 until Mass.

External linksEdit

Official diocesan web-page

Italian Wikipedia page

Parish website

Info.roma web-page

Beweb web-page

Roman Despatches blog with gallery

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