Shall we go for a stroll? I have no doubt you will be astonished to see how many shrines, little mountain churches, crosses and enchanting hermitages we will find along the way. Yes, we may be a bit frugal here but we’re also very religious! Before the arrival of the apple in this land the people were very poor and, as you know, poor people will always turn an eye towards the heavens.
It all began way back in 397 AD with the martyring at Sanzeno of three missionaries from Cappadocia, in what is now Turkey, called Sisinio, Martirio and Alessandro. In the huge basilica in the town, you can still read their story and, if you are religious, pray on their ashes. From Sanzeno, Christianity spread across the whole of the Val di Non, weaving its way into the daily life of the peasants, working its way into the walls of the castles, secreting itself in the dense forests and deep canyons.
No doubt you have heard of the famous San Romedio hermitage. It is the envy of the world, with its five little chapels perched on the rock, its bear and breathtaking views. But I would love to take you to discover the church in my village, where even today I seek refuge to enjoy the scent of the candles burning beneath the gaze of Maria.
Come with me!