The Molisano Cercemaggiore – Castelpetroso path

The Molisano Cercemaggiore - Castelpetroso path

The itinerary starts from CERCEMAGGIORE and passes through SEPINO, BOIANO and then reaches CASTELPETROSO.

The origins of the cult of the Madonna of Cercemaggiore date back to the discovery of a wooden statue of the Virgin by a farmer in 1412. The statue, now venerated in the sanctuary, is 1.33 m high. and depicts the Madonna standing in a prayerful attitude, her body adorned with a long blue dress.

Locals say the statue was later hidden during the iconoclastic period.

The church, destroyed several times by fortuitous events, was rebuilt in 1500, as can be seen from the inscription on the main door. Inside it is structured in three naves with a cross vault and a false dome. On the sides of the naves there are a total of twelve chapels, an altar from the Baroque era acts as the throne of the statue of the Virgin.

Also inside, note the numerous paintings in the church and those in the convent and refectories, dating back to the 16th century.

SEPINO is a characteristic village, with a beautiful square with a fountain in the centre, from where the streets of the historic center project out in a radial pattern. The Church dedicated to Santa Cristina preserves the relics of the Saint, whose moments of life and martyrdom can be admired and known in the crypt of the sanctuary.

It is possible to admire a real Roman city, with the typical structure that develops on the two main roads, the Cardo and the Decumano, with the unique feature of rising on the Pescasseroli-Candela cattle track. The visit includes the fortified walls, the baths, the theatre, the forum and the basilica.

BOIANO is an important town in the Matese area of ​​Molise, crossed by the Biferno river. We recommend a visit to the ceramics workshops and a stop in the square which is the meeting place and the market that takes place on Saturdays.

CASTELPETROSO. The Sanctuary of Castelpetroso, place of the Apparition is in French Gothic style and houses in the central chapel the statue of Our Lady of Sorrows and the Dead Jesus. Another 6 chapels are each dedicated to a pain of the Virgin Mary, with paintings by the Molise master Amedeo Trivisonno.

The bell towers are equipped with a beautiful concert of bells created by the Pontifical Foundry of Bells Marinelli of Agnone, in the province of Isernia, the pride of the ancient artistic traditions of Molise (Agnone is a recommended stop to visit the Historical Museum of Bells and learn more about the art of fusion).

Along the itinerary, we also recommend visiting one of the dairies to assist in the production of the renowned dairy products and visiting one of the many typical restaurants for tasting products of the ancient gastronomic tradition and the DOC wine of Molise: the Tintilia .

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