Rosalia’s Cave

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Palermo’s patron, Santa Rosalia, is recognized on September 4, the day she died in 1166, with a pilgrimage to her sanctuary at the top of Palermo’s Mount Pellegrino. Pictured is the sanctuary’s chapel that is housed inside the cave where a hunter in 1624 had a vision of the little-known, medieval-era saint. In the vision, she gave him explicit instructions on how she could help Palermo combat a plague that was ravaging the city that spring and summer. He obeyed her wishes, and the city, soon after parading her bones through its streets, found respite. Annually on September 4, pilgrims come from far and wide, processing up Mount Pellegrino in order to pay homage to the young woman who rejected a life of privilege and instead sought a life devoted to prayer and solitude.

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