CHURCH OF SAINT NICHOLAS OF BARI

Probably already existing in IX century, the Church of St. Nicholas is one of the oldest buildings in Cetraro.

Chiesa  di San Nicola

 

Initially the building consisted of a single nave, but following the construction of the adjacent Palazzo del Vicario, the church was enlarged to fill the gap between the two structures. So a minor aisle and a sacristy on the side, inside the Palazzo del Vicario, were added to the church.

Subsequently, the church underwent further restoration works that altered its structural setting. In particular, the facade features a stone portal, originally belonging to the Palazzo del Trono and subsequently adapted to the entrance of the small church during the restoration works which took place in the early XX century.

The interior is characterised by a flooring made of Garda pink marble, which was added during the last restoration work, and a high altar raised above the level of the nave. The apse is decorated at the top with a relief of Christ Pantocrator, surmounted by a swag held by two angels. The aedicule, located between twin columns, contains a statue of St. Nicholas.

Chiesa di San Nicola, interno

 

On the left of the altar, there is a shrine containing the statue of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, whose cult is still alive in the local religious tradition. The Virgin was credited for having halted the cholera epidemic that plagued the city in 1837 AD; a century later, as a sign of devotion, the parishioners commissioned the golden crown which still surrounds the head of the Statue.

In the minor aisle there is a second altar dedicated to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, with a group of statues depicting St. Margaret Mary Alacoque in ecstasy in front of the Redeemer.

Chiesa di San Nicola, statua Madonna del Carmelo