The Church of the Most Holy Virgin of the Rosary was built in the centre of the village of Gorga at the end of the 19th century and was commissioned by the Carpineto Romano Pope, Leo XIII.
A wide staircase runs from the square below into the Church. It has a linear façade, with two plaques, a tribute to the papacy and to Teresa Santucci, the sister of cardinal Vincenzo Santucci, who bequeathed his birthplace, a house annexed to the church, to religious orders as long as they provided education for the local population. The roof is raised on a marble column with a Latin inscription bearing the name of the Church. On the right you can see the bell tower.
The feeling you get when entering the Church is that it is a small temple, with a Greek cross floor plan, a central nave enclosed by three altars, with three canvases, depicting The Holy Family, Adoration of the Virgin and the Crucifixion.
The church incorporates the Palace of Cardinal Vincenzo Santucci, the Cardinal's family residence. This is where he spent his summers, along with many of his collaborators from Rome.
Vincenzo Santucci was born in Gorga in 1796 and studied at the Bishops Seminary in Anagni. Having fulfilled various ecclesiastical roles, he was elected Cardinal on March 8, 1853.
The Veneranda Compagnia del Santissimo Rosario (Venerable Company of the Holy Rosary) operated out of the Church of the Holy Rosary from the mid 1700s, proved by entries in the visitors books held by the Congregation of Good Government during the same period.
The Company was probably introduced by priests linked to the Dominican order, which spread the use of the Rosary, still strongly rooted in the community’s religious practices.
Over time many religious orders were linked to this area, including the Trinitarians, the Passionists and the Vocationists.
As the 19th century drew to a close, the hard work carried out by these fathers enabled the spread of pilgrimages to the sanctuary in Pompei dedicated to the Virgin of the Rosary, to which Pope Leo XIII was particularly devoted.
This Church holds the Venerable Company’s Banner, the only remaining trace of its activities, which features the coat of arms of the Virgin of the Rosary.