Home

 
CHURCH OF ST. MARCELLUS San Marcello (Ch. 38)
Afftyr that this creatur had thus govyn awey hir good and had neyther peny ne halfpeny to helpyn hirself wyth, as sche lay in Seynt Marcellys Chirche in Rome, thynkyng and stodying wher sche schuld han hir levyng inasmech as sche had no sylvir to cheys hir wyththal, owr Lord answeryd to hir mende . . . 
The Church of St. Marcellus (San Marcello) is located on the Quirinal Hill. Most likely this visit, and others unmentioned, were in accordance with the daily assigned Stations, which moved around the city. Kempe has a mental conversation with the Lord, who tells her not to worry, and that night a vision of our Lady, that produces a similar effect. Shortly after she meets up with Dame Margaret Florentine, who had accompanied her to Rome, from Assisi. This kind woman subsequently provides Margery with food and money. 

San Marcello was founded in 418, dedicated to the Pope Marcellus (308-309) who reorganized the Christian community in Rome after the persecutions of the Emperor Diocletian. It is said to be erected on the site of Pope St. Marcellus's residence.  The church that Margery would have visited was built in the 12th century.  Among its important relics were the body of St. Marcellus and the heads of Sts. Cosmas and Damian.  It was also the burial place of Leo III, Hadrian I, and Gregory I  Unfortunately it burned down in May of 1519. Jacopo Sansovino was commissioned to rebuild it, commencing immediately and the present building dates from 1519-92.  In his construction Sansovino reversed the orientation of the church. The travertine facade is an early work of Carlo Fontana. The interior also has Baroque renovations.

The one object in the church that we could connect to Kempeís visit is the Miraculous Crucifix. It is a beautiful wooden crucifix, dating to the 14th century, and the only object that survived the fire of 1519, thus confirming itís miraculous power, and adding to itís devotion. It is traditionally carried in processions, and during Holy Years it is carried to the Vatican Palace, to be venerated by the faithful. The cessation of the plague of 1522 is attributed to its power as well. 

ROSM1: Facade of San Marcello

ROSM2: Interior of San Marcello, Chapel of the Miraculous Crucifix