SAINT EUTIZIO’S CHURCH AND CATACOMBS
It is located near the catacombs dug on Saint Eutizio’s express will; a priest from Ferento, evangeliser in Soriano and the neighbouring villages, he was almost certainly martyred during Diocletian’s persecution between 303 and 305 a.d.. The first oratory, dedicated to the Martyr was built – next to the catacombs where he had been buried – immediately after Constantine’s Edict of Milan dating 313. Raised to basilica, subsequently collapsed, the sanctuary was then rebuilt towards the end of the 15th century. In was finally in 1740 that under the direction of the Alban family – Lords of Soriano – the Church was rebuilt and the imposing bell tower preserved. Notwithstanding the modifications it has underwent eversince, the construction looks substantially unchanged. The interior shows an octagonal plan and the high altar stands over a large crypt treasuring the remains of the Saint. To the left of the presbytery, is located an eighteenth century round painting portraying the Virgin with Child, attributed to Sebastiano Conca. Within the crypt – walled into the current structure – pillars and portions of bare stone belonging to the original sanctuary are still visible, together with a small votive painting, probably tracing back to the 14th century. A small antiquarium is cherished in a room adjacent to the Church. The catacombs can be accessed from the right hand of the crypt, in the portion of the building remained unchanged where the so called “S. Eutizio’s stone” has been placed. Next to the sanctuary is a convent run by the Passionists – initially guided by their founder S. Paul of the Cross – since 1744.