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2 March Mar 2018 1459 2 months ago

A place for the Pope

Scheduled to take place in Desio next 10 February at Pius XI's birthplace

In 1966 the Veneranda Fabbrica decided to organise a competition for the realisation of a monument in memory of one of the great figures from Ambrosian (and Christian) ecclesiastical life: Achille Ratti, elected to the office of pope in 1922 under the name Pius XI. The competition entailed the creation of a statue which would be positioned in the rear of the choir, next to the door to the southern sacristy, in the empty space shown in this photograph, taken at the time and distributed to those participating in the competition so that they could best evaluate their creation in relation to the context. The competition did not provide the desired outcome, however, after various complications, in February 1970 the statue of the pope, sculpted by Francesco Messina and still visible to worshippers and tourists to this day, was inaugurated. The history behind the Fabbrica's desire to commemorate Pope Ratti will be, among other contributions by important scholars, the subject of the Pio XI e il suo tempo [Pius XI and his time] convention, now in its 10th edition, scheduled to take place in Desio next 10 February at Pius XI's birthplace.