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Basilica of the Holy Cross in Jerusalem

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Basilica of the Holy Cross in Jerusalem is situated about 1 Km East of the Lateran, as it was here that the Palaces of Empress Elena, mother of Costantino, were to be found.

It is one of the seven churches of Rome that had to be visited in one day by pilgrims who travelled on foot.

The church underwent several restorations starting from the XII century and during the Renaissance and Baroque periods. More attention was given to the Baroque-era restrructuring, under the rule of Benedetto XIV,and work was carried out by Pietro Passalacqua and Domenico Gregoriani, authors of the facade and the oval hall.

Nowadays, part of the original fresco's are kept in the Museum.

Until the XVI century, the church was connected to a Carthusian monastery.

In 1476, Pope Sisto IV had the Oratorio di Santa Maria del Buonaiuto built.

The modifications to the Palace were carried out so as to host the reliques relative to the Crucifixion of Christ, which arrived here thanks to Empress Elena who bought them back after a journey to the Holy Land, even though their authenticity cannot be guaranteed.

In the medieval ages the pilgrims considered this Chapel so Holy that entrance was not allowed to women.

It was the restructuring carried out in the XVIII century that bought about a total renewal of the internal areas which were decorated by three large paintings by the artist from Molfetta, Corrado Giaquinto. Another treasure is the mosaic from the XIV century which nowadays is to be found in the Basilica's museum, probably built by Pope Gregorio Magno after having had a vision of Christ.

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