Hermitages of the pilmrimage
HERMITAGE OF MONTEPAOLO
Historical documents testify that St. Francis’s disciples were in Montepaolo before the year 1220. They lived in a simple hermitage, left by the Monks of Saint Andrew’s Abbey near Dovadola. Owing to the stratification and friability of the ground (“calanco” type) the area suffered from water pounding. Similarly the same happened to the hermitage where St. Anthony lived from the spring 1221 till the autumn 1222.
For more details see Hermitage of Montepaolo
HERMITAGE OF CAMALDOLI
At the beginning of the XI century European society was torn by political struggles. The church was involved in these events and the monastic life itself was conditioned.
Saint Romualdo, a monk of the Sant’Apollinare in Classe’s Abbey in Ravenna, re-proposed the original calling of believers to the radical faithfulness to the Gospel and to the interior freedom, warranted, not by human power or by strict disciplinary rules, but by fidelity to the Spirit of God. He was a great man of Spirit who gave an exemplary evangelic lesson to a society fighting for power.
For more details see Hermitage of Camaldoli
HERMITAGE OF LA VERNA
It is one of the best known cult places in Italy. In 1213 St. Francis received the whole mountain where La Verna is from the count Cattani as a gift. Francis immediately loved this place because it was peaceful and silent, suitable for living in an austere and ascetic solitude. Here, in fact, the Saint received the stigmata on 14 September 1224. The importance of La Verna in the Pilgrimage of Assisi is summed up in the words written on the main door of the Hermitage: “Non est in toto sanctior orbe mons” (“There is not a more sacred mount in the world ”).
For more details see Hermitage of La Verna
HERMITAGE OF CASELLA
The hermitage of Casella was born immersed in the woods of Alpe di Catenaia, between Casentino and Valtiberina. From here Francis greeted La Verna with these touching words: “Farewell mount of God, Farewell Alvernia mount”.
For more details see Hermitage of Casella
HERMITAGE OF CERBAIOLO
The medieval hermitage of Cerbaiolo (861 mts a.s.l.) is situated in a territory rich in natural ravines and springs, not far from the Sinigiola stream and overlooking the mountain precipice. Its position and shape is similar to the one of La Verna: even on Cerbaiolo there is a small tooth of rock, which so reminds us of Penna Mountain in Casentino, that people say “who has seen La Verna and not Cerbaiolo , has seen the mother but not the son”. We do not know if Francis lived here, but for sure Anthony from Padua liked to come here to pray.
For more details see Hermitage of Cerbaiolo
HERMITAGE OF MONTECASALE
The hermitage of Montecasale (706 mts a.s.l.) is situated in Val d’Afra between the Alta Valle of Tiber and Alta Valle of Metauro. According to tradition it was founded by Francis of Assisi in 1213 who received it from the bishop of Città di Castello as a gift. The Franciscan sources tell about the three thieves’ conversion and of the relics transported by St. Francis to be guarded and venerated; the popular tradition adds the story of the cabbages that Francis asked to be planted upside down to verify the obedience of two young aspiring monks.
For more details see Hermitage of Montecasale
HERMITAGE OF BUONRIPOSO
It is not very far from Città di Castello, hidden behind Sant’Angiolino hill, to the right of the Tiber, in the middle of dense woods of chestnut-trees. It has been handed down that in 1213 Francis obtained a little chapel with a surrounding “garden” where the Minorites took place from the devote Cristiano Guelfucci. It is possible to see the room used by Francis in 1213.
For more details see Hermitage of Buonriposo
HERMITAGE OF THE CARCERI
The ancient hermitage of the XIV century, located at about 5 kms from Assisi, going up to Subasio, was built on the site of the small church where St. Francis and his disciples went to pray, withdrawing there in a sort of “mystical” prison. It seems that the name “Eremo delle Carceri” (= prison) is due to the origin of the word “Carcere”: Holy Retreat. At the beginning there was only a small Oratory which Francis liked very much for penitence and contemplation.
For more details see Hermitage of the Carceri
“To my brother Anthony, my bishop, I wish good health. I approve of your teaching theology to the monks, but only on condition that, owing to this study, you will not dampen the spirit of the holy prayer and devotion, as it is ordained in the Rule. Be well” Francis
Link:Anthony's life and works
“Here, on earth, the eye of the soul is Love, the only valid one to overcome any veil. Wherever the intellect stops, love proceeds with its own colour to the union with God” Saint Anthony from Padua, Sermone