- Art & Culture
Sanctuary of Our Lady of the Alpini
The Sanctuary dedicated to Our Lady of the Alpini in Chiesa Valmalenco is located in a wonderful mountain setting dominated by the pyramid of Pizzo Scalino.
The church, beside its sacred function, also plays a civil role: the wide square often hosts the representatives of several Italian and foreign military corpses who rally before the monument to the "Alpino of Italy" designed by the local artist Silvio Gaggi and built in 1984 using serpentine from Valmalenco.
At the feet of a rock topped by an eagle and the typical hat, there are a rock and some earth brought from Nikolajewka in 1991 - in memory of the tragic but glorious retreat from Russia.
Under the pronaos, a wooden sculpture portrays Mary with open arms who welcomes the young and old adoring Alpini.
The church hosts a majestic mosaic inside the presbytery. Against a golden background Mary is portrayed enthroned with the Child in her arms. The baby holds an edelweiss, while in Mary's right hand there is a palm - the symbol of the eternal prize destined to those who undertake to protect freedom and get involved in humanitarian missions.
Another touching reference to the Alpini is the precious showcase that houses some small soapstone statuettes portraying the Alpini in several situations.
The liturgical celebration takes place on August 15th - the Assumption of Mary.