Sony RX1, 35mm f2 Carl Zeiss
ISO1250, f/2.8, 1/80, raw
After the Habemus Papam and the subsequent inauguration of the pontiff, the new Pope pays a visit to the four papal basilicas: Saint Paul Outside the Walls, St. Mary Major, St. Peter’s, St. John Lateran. I’m all but an expert on Catholic symbolisms and clerical traditions, but for what I understood what makes unique the three papal basilicas is that they have a (huge) “holy door”, which gets opened only during Jubilee so that the pilgrims can walk through it and benefit of the “plenary indulgence” (which should have all their sins forgiven), plus the papal basilicas are the only ones to have a papal altar, that is, a (huge) altar from which solely the Pope (or a designated delegate) may celebrate mass.
This one is Saint Paul Outside the Walls (San Paolo Fuori le Mura), and it is my favorite among the four. It’s really ancient and has a very long history (it was founded in the 370s, can you believe that?), the apostle Saint Paul is buried beneath it, and it is breathtakingly beautiful. Also, the basilica is decorated with the mosaic portraits of all the popes, but Pope Francesco’s portrait is still missing…