The event dearest to the inhabitants of the Aniene Valley is the Arrival of the Madonna of Quintiliolo which will be celebrated in Tivolithe first Sunday in May. Until the 16th century, the Virgin Mary only left the Sanctuary in Quintiliolo on rare, exceptional circumstances, and on these occasions the icon was housed in the Church of the Madonna del Ponte. Then, later, around the 16th century, the tradition began of taking the icon to the Cathedral of S. Lorenzo on May 1 each year, and then returning it to the sanctuary on the first Sunday in August. Even Pope Gregory XVI attended the procession in May 1834 in the home of the Regnoni family, and it was during his papacy that the Gregorian tunnels through Monte Catillo were created to divert the Aniene River and prevent its disastrous flooding.
The Virgin Mary remains on view for the worship of the faithful from the first Sunday in May to the first Sunday in August, and because farmers prayed to her in continuation to protect their crops, she became worshipped as Our Lady of Abundance. And it was in order to be able to pray to her better, to have her closer, that back in 1679, the farmers succeeded in having this sacred icon housed in the Tivoli cathedral during the summer months, so crucial to a good harvest.
Today, the sacred icon leaves the sanctuary early in the morning on a light processional vehicle made from Lebanon cedar transported by ox drivers and accompanied by Capuchin monks and the faithful, making its way to the Triumphal Arch not far from the entrance to the Villa Gregoriana, welcomed by the traditional May shot from Mount Catillo, announcing the arrival of the Virgin to the population. Awaiting her there is also be the parish priest of the cathedral who must take her into custody from the Capuchin Fathers. The arch welcomes the icon which is transferred to another processional vehicle dating from the 18th century, restored in recent years, and much larger and heavier. On it, the Madonna makes her triumphal entrance into the city of Tivoli. Of special note, the statue's cloak designed by the Marinucci brothers and embroidered in pure gold, according to the tradition of Rome's artisans of sacred objects.
Once the procession starts up again following its rest under the arch, high mass is celebrated in the nearby Piazzale Massimo, in which all ecclesiastical and lay authorities take part, as well as the general public. Then a procession is formed which makes its way along Via Domenico Giuliani, over the flower carpet organized by the Via Maggiore neighborhood. The Madonna’s return to the Sanctuary traditionally takes place once again early in the morning on the first Sunday in August in a less solemn ceremony. According to tradition, the ox drivers who transport the processional vehicle walk quickly because the Virgin Mary is anxious to return home as soon as possible.