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“Upon this rock”

One of the most important things about Rome is that it is the city where the tomb of St. Peter is located. While a simple visit to St. Peter's ends with the basilica and crypt, if you book in advance, it is also possible to go inside to see the actual tomb and relics of the first pope, martyred in Rome.

Some seminarians visited the Vatican excavations on Saturday, 20 April. Our guide was professor Caterina Papi, a lecturer in Christian Archaeology. She explained us the historical background, the stages of the excavation process and the historicity of the tomb of Peter. Finally, we reached the actual site of the tomb and venerated the transparent reliquary which contains the bones of St Peter.

After the archaeological visit we entered the crypt of the papal tombs and don Eduardo Baura explained each one of them and the epochal significance of the corresponding popes. Then we proceeded to the Basilica and we made a detailed visit and study of the artworks, the Baldachin and the altars. St Peter’s Basilica is not new for us, but a studied visit and the view of the excavations was indeed inspiring and heart-rending.


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