All Saints' Anglican Church, Rome
A growing Christian community in the heart of Rome finding and following Jesus in worship,
fellowship, study and service.
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Listen to some organ music, played by Titular Organist, Gabriele Catalucci Listen to some organ music, played by Titular Organist, Gabriele Catalucci

Walk Round Tour

The Garden

Seen from the windows of the Vestry and the church office, but entered from the side street through a Gothic doorway, there is a long narrow garden which church volunteers recreated in May 1978 out of a wilderness of weeds and nettles.

Here, every Sunday from about mid - May to mid - October, the weekly social gathering after the 10.30 Sunday service moves out of doors. With a little beaker of chilled white wine or a fruit juice in the hand, members of our international church family, resident or present for only an hour, enjoy meeting each other under the shade of mature trees - olive, pomegranate, pear, bay, and Pittosphora. There is a border of flowering plants and small bushes, climbing roses and various things in huge Roman terracotta pots. People gave gravel and park benches, and a departing British Ambassador offered, to have fixed to one of Mr. Street's plain buttresses, a bas relief copy of an 11th century figure of "The Sower" representing the month of November. The original can be seen on the façade of Bologna Cathedral.

We hold summer events in the garden when occasion offers, and there have been memorable suppers there in the dark - even a film show!

In these surroundings, then, or indoors when Rome is not living up to her romantic image, modern Christians from many different traditions, nations and races gather in fellowship in a variety which may well have surprised the founding fathers of our Anglican Home in Rome. It must surely be pleasing to the Founder Himself.


The Canonica

Above them, and between them and the street frontage, rises the Canonica, or "Church House" as it was originally called. It was planned, not by A.E.Street but by a local architect called M.E.Cannizzaro, in about 1908, but not finished until 1915. The property, now a great asset for income, owes its existence to Alfred Chenevix Trench, one of the churchwardens of the day. He saw to the securing of the site when it became available, and lent a large sum of money to get the project started. He did not press for repayment, (and in 1920 he finally made over the house as a gift, to the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel. They already held the deeds of the church.

Ironically, chaplains continued to live in hotels right up to the Second World War (taking very extended summer leave) and the chaplain's apartment

in the Canonica has housed the priest only since 1949. The remainder of the space is let to private and commercial tenants whose rents, after tax is paid to the Municipality, help keep the ministry of All Saints' alive.

Please note, however, that neither the Church Commissioners nor the British Government shoulder any responsibility for All Saints', and its good order and ministry and worship are very much dependent upon regular giving of resident worshippers. They, needless to say, are most grateful for the donations of visitors, in whatever form or currency.


The Vestry

(Entry cannot be promised to visitors but they may ask).

In the Vestry, a monumental brass to Canon Wasse adorns the wall above a former fireplace, showing him in a strange mixture of academic "mortar board", surplice and patterned stole.

He is flanked on the wall by simple, classical medallions in white plaster, depicting the heads of

(a) The first Earl Cairns (1819 - 1885) "the first lawyer of his time", and "an evangelical churchman of great piety", from Northern Ireland.
(b) The Revd. T.T.Carter (1808 - 1901) a noted Tractarian divine, who became Warden of Clewer in 1844.

These plaques were done (it is not known precisely why) by Shakspere Wood, a sculptor who came to Rome in 1851, and whose son and four daughters are recorded as having been baptised between 1861 and 1868. As he died in 1886, it would seem likely that these medallions were donated to the church when it was about to be opened. (These words rescue the portrait heads, and their sculptor, from almost certain total anonymity of more than 100 years).

The vestry and office above were the first portion of the church premises to be roofed and usable - for meetings held from 1885.

The Lighting

The church was first lit by electricity in time for Christmas eve 1909. There is no sign of light fittings of any kind in early photographs: how did they see their prayer books on dark mornings, not to mention at Evensong.

The installation was, however, so time expired in recent years that we, too, found it hard to see our texts except on sunny days. A total rewiring was ordered in 1981, and all the fittings were dismantled. The original design was copied and many extra units made by a craftsman, while subtle modern lights were added in places where there were non before. This work was made possible by a magnificent gift from Dott. Marcello Mininni in memory of his British relations.


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