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borgo-italia

special report
italiano  english
the ancient church of Sant'Andrea
(Castelletto di Vernasca (PC) - Emilia Romagna)
text by: borgo-italia [only desktop] - photo by: Gianni
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the ancient church of Sant'Andrea
(Castelletto di Vernasca (PC) - Emilia Romagna)

Driving along the provincial road 72, in Castelletto di Vernasca, after a small crossroads, there is a dirt road that leads uphill to the remains of the church of Sant'Andrea, a jewel dating back to the times when pilgrims walked along the steep paths of the Apennines:
This place of great charm can be reached by car or by foot following the "cammino di Santa Franca" (path of Santa Franca), that from Vitalta, a hamlet of Vernasca, leads to the Sanctuary at the S. Franca pass, in the municipality of Morfasso.

The place where the church was built was chosen for its dominant position, from which you can enjoy a splendid view of the Arda valley (and of the lake of Mignano, whose dam was built in the first half of 1900).

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Sant'Andrea of Castelletto
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A bit of history:
The church of Sant'Andrea was built in 1167 by the abbot Alberto, in the moment of the maximum splendor of the abbey of Tolla (today a ruin).
In 1618, being unsafe, it was closed and the parish priest was transferred elsewhere.
Not accepting to have to move to follow the mass the inhabitants of Castelletto began to build about in the same position a new church, consecrated in February 1620.
From 1775 to 1885 it underwent several changes, but they did not alter the original structure.
Absurdly in the hamlet a new church was built in 1947and this little jewel was abandoned to the neglect of time and to a continuous plundering.
Luckily in 1990 the association "Amici dell'antica chiesa di S. Andrea del Castelletto" (Friends of the ancient church of S. Andrea del Castelletto) was founded and started a work of restoration and preservation.

The path of Santa Franca:
edited by the association "Via dei Monasteri Regi", in the image n. 17 an outline of the route; the maps are available at the IAT of Castell'Arquato or at the municipalities of Vernasca and Morfasso, or on the site viamonasteriregi.

For more info:
quadernivaltolla:S.Andrea del Castelletto
viamonasteriregi
valdarda: un gioiello sconosciuto: la chiesa antica di castelletto
valtolla: cammino di Santa Franca

text by: borgo-italia [only desktop]
photo by: Gianni

Emilia 14 - release date: 2021-03-02