Santi Simone e Giuda Taddeo a Torre Angela is a late 20th century parish and titular church at Via di Torrenova 162 in the suburb of Torre Angela, which is in between the Via Prenestina and Via Casilina just east of the Grande Raccordo Anulare (Circonvallazione Orientale).
The parish was erected in 1961. However, it had to wait a long time for a permanent church and one result is that it has a surprising number of public Mass centres -there are six subsidiary chapels.
The name was chosen in memory of the lost parish church of Santi Simone e Giuda.
The permanent church was finally begun in 1986, to a design by Loreto Policella and Mario Pochesi. It was completed in 1990 and consecrated in 1992.
The church was made titular in 2014, with the first cardinal priest being Pietro Parolin. He was raised to the dignity of a cardinal bishop in 2018, but without a see.
Layout and fabric Edit
At first glance the plan is based on an oval (that is egg-shaped, not an ellipse), with the pointed end at the entrance. However, it is actually an irregular decaoctagon (eighteen sides).
The fabric is in reinforced concrete, the exterior walls being in white. Each corner is occupied by a doubled concrete pier which helps to support the roof. Each section of wall between the piers has a window strip at the top, and those in the front half of the church each have a rectangular window joining this strip. The back half of the church abuts onto an ancillary block, which wraps around this half.
The pitched pagoda-style roof has eighteen pitches corresponding to the sides of the decaoctagon in the plan, and has a deep overhang over the low exterior walls. Twelve of these are triangular sectors, but those at the cardinal sides are rectangular. They meet at a rectangular lantern, which has a triangular window low down on each side which occupies the full width of the rectangular roof pitch below. Above these triangular windows is a conical cap formed of eight pitches taken from the sloping sides of the triangles. The material for the roof is anodized metal.
The church stands well back from the street, and is approached by a path laid in light grey bricks and with a white pattern involving concentric squares.
The single entrance is surrounded by a border made up of ten square coloured panels, each showing green, ochre and red concentric squares.
The interior is dominated by the open roof, which is in wood. Enormous radial plank-beams on edge delineate the sectors, and are connected by two concentric rings of similar beams. Each sector has thin radial battens laid over panelling planks. The whole is varnished in light brown.
The walls are in white, and the glass in the windows is clear. The floor, however, gives some colour as it is laid in marble tiles which are red, yellow, grey and white.
Despite this shape, this church has its altar at the far end from the entrance and not in the middle. Subsidiary entrances occupy the cardinal points to the sides
The altar is backed by a set of screens mostly in white, with decorative detailing in grey shades and some beading in green marble. These screens conceal the sacristy accommodation. The central panel is an enormous square on one corner, which contains Byzantine-style icons of a Crucifix, Our Lady and St John arranged to form a Calvary. Here also are hung icons of the patron saints, Simon and Jude. They also feature in two statues over a little side altar to the left. Other devotional statues are traditional polychrome plaster works, including that of the Mother and Child further to the left.
To the right of the main altarpiece screen is the tabernacle, set in a smaller lozenge square and made of copper in the form of the Crown of Thorns. By it is kept the paschal candlestick, of white marble with a red marble top.
Further to the right is a set of screen panels depicting a New Testament scene (Cristo Risorto) in bright colours. This is by Paola Ranfi.
BEWARE OF THE RESTRICTED OPENING HOURS FOR THIS CHURCH.
The church is open, according to the Diocese (July 2018):
Weekdays 8:00 to 9:30, 17:15 to 18:45 (17:45 to 19:15 in Daylight Saving Time);
Sundays and Solemnities 8:00 to 13:00, 17:00 to 18:45 (17:30 to 19:15 in Daylight Saving Time).
According to the Diocese, Mass is celebrated:
Weekdays 9:00, 18:30;
Sundays and Solemnities 8:30, 10:00, 11:30 (not summer), 18:00.
There is Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament on First Fridays, from 10:00 to 12:00 and 17:00 to 18:00.
Subsidiary chapels Edit
The parish maintains a total of six subsidiary Mass centres:
(The parish has no website, making do with a Facebook page.)