THE PARISH CHURCH OF SAN ROCCO
The origins of this church are recalled by an epigraph in Latin, visible at the base of the bell tower, which shows the date of its consecration, 1614. The entrance portal is in Sarnico sandstone carved with small friezes similar to those we find in the square window, over which dominates the monogram of San Bernardino da Siena: IHS, Jesus the Saviour of Men. The two statues, placed in the top niches, represent Saint Aloysius de Gonzaga and Saint Teresa of Avila.
The most original element of the parish church dedicated to St. Rocco is not in the church, but at the top of the bell tower: here the Patron Saint rotates his position according to the direction of the wind.
In four hundred years the building has been enriched with precious paintings of the Bergamo school and works by the Fantonis, master carvers from the nearby Valle Seriana. Inside are masterpieces by Palma il Giovane and his pupil Domenico Carpinoni (both of whom grew artistically in the cultural context of 17th-century Venice) with the recently restored canvas of St. Francis Receiving the Stigmata and the large high altarpiece. The church furnishings and inlays, on the other hand, are of the Fantoni school, the well-known Fantoni family of Rovetta, who also created the high altar and the splendid confessional of the Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore in Bergamo.
The Church opens to the public according to the mass times and the annual calendar of openings planned by the Municipality of Bianzano. Group visits can be booked with the operators of the Pro Brianzano Cultural and Tourist Association.
Every year, on the third Sunday of July, the statue of the “Signorù”, a large wooden statue of the deposed Christ, is carried in procession through the town starting from the Church of Santa Maria Assunta as far as the Church of San Rocco. It is an evocative, centuries-old event, well worth seeing. We now invite you to reach the Sanctuary of Santa Maria Assunta which is only 15 minutes away.
As we walk towards our destination, let us tell you the story of the wooden statue of the Signorù, made from a single piece of wood, dating back to the 17th century, and depicting Christ deposed from the cross, usually placed in the niche of the church. The statue, which is over two metres long, originally belonged to a large crucifix and, according to tradition, its appearance frightened the faithful so much that they decided to take off its arms and bury it. This gesture, as strange as it was sacrilegious, generated, according to the inhabitants, a chain of misfortunes and natural disasters that struck the town. To interrupt this chain of tragedies the statue was exhumed and its arms were reattached, this time resting along the torso and no longer opened wide. Today, devotion for the statue is total and every year it is carried in procession through the town.
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