Saint Maria Goretti


Maria Goretti is an Italian virgin martyr of the Catholic Church, worshipped all over the world.
She was born in Corinaldo on October 16, 1890.
In 1897 her family of farmers, looking for work, moved to the Lazio region where they shared a house with the Serenellis, father and son, Alessandro.
When Maria was almost ten, her father died of malaria and she took her mother’s role in caring for her siblings, supported by her strong faith in God.
In 1902, 20-year-old Alessandro began making advances on Maria, which she always rebuffed.
On July 5, 1902, facing Maria repeating one more time “It is a sin, Alessandro. You will go to hell if you do it.”, he stabbed her repeatedly.
The next day, at Nettuno’s hospital, before dying, Maria told her mother “Yes, for the love of Jesus I forgive him…and I want him with me in Paradise.” After 27 years in prison, Alessandro meets mamma Assunta and they reconcile.
The forgiveness of her assassin, along with the defense of her virtue, led Maria to be proclaimed Saint on June 24, 1950.

Maria Goretti’s places in Corinaldo

Her birthplace

A short distance from the historic centre, in the “Pregiagna” countryside, sits the house where Saint Maria Goretti was born, that can also be reached by bus. It is a small country house with two floors. The ground floor has a room that still contains items from the primitive stall, while in the area that was used for the cellar there is now a simple chapel dedicated to saint Maria Goretti. The upper floor includes the dining room with the central fireplace and two other rooms; on the left the bedroom of Luigi Goretti and Assunta Carlini. This is where “Marietta”, as her family used to call her, was born on October 16, 1890. This room still contains original furniture from the Goretti family, such as the bed and the painting over the bed donated by Mother Assunta.


Saint Maria Goretti Diocesan Sanctuary

The Saint Maria Goretti Diocesan Sanctuary is located at the peak of the historic centre, easily identified by its bell tower above the roofs of Corinaldo. Entering to the left, there is the tomb of Mamma Assunta deceased in Corinaldo in 1954, and to the right the tomb of Allessandro Serenelli. The central altar is in white Carrara marble and near a wooden sculpture of Saint Maria Goretti there is a silver urn containing the bones of the saint’s arm, the same arm that the martyr used to defend herself from her aggressor.


The baptismal font

To the right of the entrance in the church of Saint Francis there is a statue built in Carrara marble dedicated to Saint Maria Goretti, in front of the monument there is also a bust sculpture of Pope Pius XII, the Pope who beatified Maria Goretti on April 27, 1947 and declared her a saint on June 24, 1950. Once past the door, on the
side of the monument it is possible to access the baptistery, where on the right beneath a round glass display case sits the old baptismal font where the saint was baptized on October 17, 1890.


Madonna dell’Incancellata Church

This was the church nearest to the Goretti home and the same where the little girl came to pray, especially during the month of May, which is dedicated to the Holy Virgin. In the first altar on the left the Corinaldo painter Mirco Mariani immortalized the devotional moment.

Sanctuary Official Website