I have visited this holly place with my wife Rita. we know a lot about Saint Rita's life and miracles and we pray here prayers frequently. but being there is something else....you feel the greatness of humbleness and faith...closer to God. Cascia is a small village in a very nice area in Italy and it is almost far from everything. beautiful mountains and valleys. the basilica and the old Monastery are adjacent and located at the top of this hill. expect a lot of walking upwards. there are electrical escalators that makes it much easier to go up... which I suggest that you use it when going up but don't use it in your way down (unless you have personal reasons) in order to enjoy the place and pass through the village and experience the genuine experience, mingle with the villagers and shop souvenirs and buy local food from those beautiful humble small shops.
we visited on a Sunday and were lucky to enjoy some kind of parade done my the youth of the village with drums and other instruments walking behind a big nice picture for Virgin as a tradition of glorifying the Virgin.
you have to check the site to make sure you are there on time for the Monastery tour (it is free) that is done several times a day as per schedule (in Italian). the Basilica is huge and open all day where you can see Saint Rita kept there. don't miss to visit the Basilica inferiori that I s located below the new basilica where you can find another nun Maria Teresa Fasce kept there (looks as if sleeping same like saint Rita). to the left of the entrance to this church there is a small room where you can find the Eucharist, the place is so calm not crowded and perfect for prayer and meditation and opening your heart to God.
Saint Rita visit is a great spiritual experience that one can have... I have visited lots of shrines and holy places in various parts of the world, the only place, in my opinion, one can have a similar experience is Saint Charbel's Hermitage in Annaya Village in Lebanon.
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