When in Rome (I may have mentioned I was there recently) we found ourselves in the Trastevere quarter of the city and I realised that San Francesco a Ripa (completed 1681-1701), a church I had visited about seven years earlier, was somewhere around where we were having one of those lovely “ordinary” Italian lunches. You know the kind, sitting outside in the October sun eating the most gorgeous pasta and pizza for less than 10 euros (or a few squillion lire if that’s helpful to you). After lunch, and now on a mission, we set off to find the church.
Happiness. I trundled off towards the sacristy, which is just past a chapel containing one of Bernini’s masterpieces, the sculpture Beata Ludovica Albertoni (1671-1675). I did stop to admire it, I promise. I spotted the sacristan coming out of the sacristy and asked if I could have a quick look. He wasn’t unhappy that I wanted to take some photos, just a bit bemused I think. After a while he warmed up a bit and told me that he had been doing the job 21 years. That’s more than a few shifts.
The entrance to the sacristy. Imagine Bernini’s sculpture to the left. I’m not being facetious. No photos allowed.
In we go!
More dark wood.
Um, dark wood.
I love it.
A ‘trough-like’ sacrarium.
Another gold star.
As well as the sacristy, oh, and the Bernini sculpture, the church is historically important because it’s where St Francis of Assisi stayed when he visited Rome. His cell, through the sacristy and then up some stairs, is currently being restored so we couldn’t go in. A good reason to go back again.
This is the door that leads – eventually – to St Francis’ cell.
And this is the view from the back of the sacristy towards the entrance . . . with the helpful sacristan to the left.
The last picture I took? I looked up and saw this lone painting in the centre of the ceiling.
St Francis of Assisi, pray for us