The Convento Francescano di Santa Maria degli Angeli in Badolato
Slow holidays in Calabria all year long
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The Convento Francescano di Santa Maria degli Angeli – Mondo X community

The Franciscan Convent of Santa Maria degli Angeli stands atop a small hill (Petta Degli Angeli) in front of the town of Badolato. Its foundation extends back to 1603, when Pope Clement VIII granted the title. After many vicissitudes, it was reopened in 1736 by the Franciscans, who added a bell tower. Held within are precious treasures, such as an 18th-century wooden crucifix, an elevated pulpit from the same period and a wooden choir. Here, amongst the wonderful 19th-century porticoes, a breath-taking panorama and frescoed chapels can be admired. Since 1987, it has been home to the Mondo X community, an association founded in the 1960s by Father Eligio Gelmini. Youths who have had a difficult past are welcomed into this community, where they can find their sense of balance and their place in the world.  Their main focus is on managing the garden and vegetable garden, with excellent results – an intense perfume of lemon and bergamot pervades the outdoor areas. The other tasks undertaken involve rearing livestock, such as cows and pigs, but also artisan crafts and carpentry. For the healing processes to be successful, it is necessary that they live mainly in isolation, having occasional contact with their family and to welcome visitors to show them the fruits of their daily labour. It offers a great way to facilitate the process of reintegration for the youths on an exploration of the hidden treasures of Calabria.

 

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