Madonna di Campoé

A few years ago. while doing an "Ambrosian tour" of sorts, I had the great pleasure of visiting the Santuario della Madonna di Campoé in Caglio -- a quaint and beautiful chapel nestled within the dramatic landscape of Northern Italy. After a pleasant meal nearby -- taken with clerics who informally represented the London Oratory, FSSP, Institut du Bon Pasteur and others -- I had the pleasure of attending a Solemn Mass there in the usus antiquior. It is a memory that I will forever cherish, tied as it is with the combined pleasures of food, fraternity, and the beauties of the natural and liturgical world.

The history of the chapel, while predating the event itself, is particularly tied to a Marian apparition in 1626 wherein a young shepherd girl was miraculously healed of an infirmity. From there, the site became a place of pilgrimage.

From the outside, the chapel is architecturally quite simple and one could be forgiven for missing it.

To give readers a sense of the natural surroundings of the sanctuary, here is a view from the entrance of the chapel:

Moving inside, the humble exterior gives way to an interior which is dramatic, filled with beautiful details and imagery in soft pastel hues.

Looking toward the high altar
Looking back toward the narthex
You can see from these two photos how particularly noteworthy the ceilings are. This work was completed in the late 19th century by the artist, Romeo Rivetta di Melegnano -- who also restored some of the pre-existing frescoes.

Here is a closer look at the beautiful, Marian-themed works:

The high altar includes a beautiful image of the Madonna of the Milk (otherwise also known as the "Nursing Madonna" or Madonna del Latte) which dates from 1508.

If you're wondering about that Solemn Mass I mentioned earlier, I do have a photo of it, though regrettably not of the best quality coming from the earlier days in digital photography:

A worthwhile stop should you find yourself in this part of Italy.

Credits: With the exception of two of my own photos, most of the photos within this piece are taken from here

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