The Sanctuary of the Madonna della Carità (Our Lady of Charity) is a place of worship situated in Moschiano, approximately 5 km from the town centre.
Originally built as an ordinary chapel, probably on the ruins of a shrine constructed by the locals in honour of a pagan idol, this religious building is linked to an ancient legend about the apparition of the Virgin Mary before a young shepherd girl from the village. After the girl told the parish priest of her vision, it was decided that the Sanctuary would be built on the exact spot of the encounter with the Mother of God. Tradition also has it that a statue of the Virgin Mary was found at the site of the apparition, and was then taken into the village church. The statue then suddenly disappeared, only to be found again in the same place on the hillside. This was interpreted as the Virgin Mary’s desire to be worshipped at that spot, and is the reason for the construction of the Sanctuary and its naming after Our Lady of Charity.
News of the local people’s devotion attracted large numbers of pilgrims, mainly from the Vallo di Lauro, to the extent that the community of Moschiano proposed the Coronation of the Statue of Our Lady of Mercy, which was solemnly celebrated on 14 June 1886.
The Sanctuary now has a picturesque white stone façade and wooden portal with a relief engraving of the Virgin Mary appearing to the shepherd girl and of the procession climbing to the Church. There are many works of art inside the Church, including a depiction of the Virgin Mary, restored by Salvatore Caliendo in the early 20th century; the ceiling painting depicting the Virgin Mary in glory worshipped by the faithful, and the painting of Saint Michael, which stands on the altar dedicated to the Archangel.
As a site of deep faith and devotion, the Sanctuary of the Madonna della Carità (Our Lady of Charity) is known even today for the traditional beliefs which have been handed down through the generations.
Santuario della Madonna della Carità
Località Cantato, 83020, Moschiano AV, Italia