Spring 2024

Dear brothers and sisters, sons and daughters of Romita.

It is with infinite Love that we invite you to celebrate Life on 19 May.

This year, the coincidences of time give us the immense gift of experiencing a triple noble Feast together:

  • Pentecost 2024
  • Anniversary of the heavenly birth of Brother Bernadine (+ 22 May 2022)
  • Birthday of the Romita, which precisely with the Holy Mass of Pentecost on 19 May 1991 saw the beginning of its Sacred Work of Reconstruction.

On Sunday 19 May 2024, at the sacred Franciscan hermitage La Romita di Cesi, starting at 11 a.m. we will sing and celebrate Brother Bernardino, La Romita and the Holy Spirit who has always guided and protected this Project of God.

We await you in great numbers, it will be a great opportunity to meet again in the spirit that Bernardino desired for the continuation of this life project, this Utopia that he managed to realise with so much love, devotion and strength.

What to bring:
Something to share on the lunch table
(savoury pies, cold pasta or rice, sweet cakes, etc.)
Open heart and a great desire to participate!

Those who come by car and have free places let us know, so that we can organise a lift for some friends who are unable to walk up, in the spirit of brotherhood that distinguishes us.

In order to better organise the day, please call the Romita number 0744283006 to confirm your attendance.
This will enable us to prepare a healthy, tasty and sufficient meal for each of you!

With infinite Love and Gratitude,
See you on 19 May at Romita!


Documentary about Fra Bernardino (call for participation)

Hello dear friends of Romita and good afternoon,

We are writing to ask you to take part in the realisation of a great project by Marina Greco, Fra Bernardino’s niece, and her son Cesare.

It is a documentary film about Fra Bernardino and his pioneers of Romita.

In addition to the footage that is already being shot, we are collecting material from the past.

We are looking for significant photographs and videos that can pass on Bernardino’s personality and philosophy (especially with regard to willpower and faith). Willpower and faith, which can be strengthened despite great efforts and doubts and thus transform both experiences and a seemingly predetermined fate.

Please send the image material exclusively with Wetransfer to the following e-mail by 21 November 2023 if possible:

Documentary about Fra Bernardino (call for participation)

Many thanks in advance.

Peace and all the best and endless love

The Romita of Fra Bernardino

Happy Birthday Brother Bernardino

Happy Birthday, Brother Bernardino

Happy Birthday Brother Bernardino

84 years ago was born in Montemesola a man who inspired the lives of many of us.
With his love for Francis and his commitment to restore the most authentic values of Franciscanism, he sanctified his entire life, always living and working for the good and the beautiful. Like a burning candle: luminous and warm!

May each of us carry and keep him today, in the tabernacle of his own heart.

And then, on the eve of his birth into heaven, let us honor and celebrate him together:

Sunday, May 21, 2023 at La Romita di Cesi.

It will be a feast like the one we celebrate in honor of St. Francis, but entirely dedicated to Bernardino. We want it to become an annual gathering to gather all of us in his memory and to honor his great soul.

May he always live in the hearts of the people who met him, knew him and loved him.

God bless you all ✨
See you on May 21! ❤️

🌻Dear friends of La Romita🌻

from Monday 15/08 to Saturday 27/08 we will have the opportunity to experience together a series of meetings dedicated to the spirituality of early Christianity, through in-depth studies on the life and sayings of the Desert Fathers associated with the spirituality of Franco Battiato, whose music and texts often reveal his teachings.

To accompany us in these meetings, we will have the good fortune to have with us Giancarlo Gasser, aggregate and collaborator of F. I. E. S. (Federazione Italiana Esercizi Spirituali), who will guide us through music and insights into the Mysticism of the Christian East.

Furthermore, together with Prof. Gasser we will have the opportunity to meet Susanna, a spagirist and connoisseur of medicinal herbs, who during these days will give us the opportunity to tap into the very Wisdom of Nature and the potential of healing herbs.

You are free to attend these meetings, which will be held every afternoon from 15/8 to 27/8 from 16:00 to 18:00 at the Romita.

We await you with open arms 🌻
Pace e Bene
La Romita

The Church of the Annunciation

The Church of the Annunciation

The Church of the Annunciation was built by the Brothers at the beginning of the 14th century to accommodate the numerous pilgrims who made their way up here in devotion to Our Lady of the Annunciation and to Francis. Organised on the same model as La Porziuncola, the ‘Mother Church’ of the Franciscan churches, but brighter and more spacious, it is the sister church of many other of our early convent churches with that name: the Church of the Annunciation in Amelia, where I first put on the Franciscan habit and did my novitiate year, and those of Bevagna, Gualdo Tadino, Norcia and La Scarzuola. In responding to the call and coming to the Convent of the Annunciation at La Romita I closed a circle. I gave my first “Yes” in the Church of the Annunciation in Amelia when I was 16, and I gave my final “Yes” in the Church of the Annunciation at La Romita. Following Mary’s example, my life has been signalled by “Yes”, a joyous, decisive and committed “Yes” which I have never regretted and which I renew every day, despite my limitations, defects and mistakes. The Church of the Annunciation at La Romita is extremely sober and beautifully proportioned. It is an honour and a pleasure to make our songs ring out in this marvellous space with its perfect acoustic. When we restored the church, we removed the plaster to reveal the form and true colour of the tan stones, rebuilt the altar from Roman stones found scattered in the chapel and the church, remade the choir in elm wood and installed a glass window depicting the Canticle of Creation which illuminates it at sunrise. This welcoming and cosy space is the centre of life at La Romita: here, in silence, in listening to the Word and in singing the psalms, we absorb light, strength and courage.

The Church of the Annunciation takes us back to the story told by Luke the Evangelist (Luke 1, vv 26-38), a page full of charm, beauty and poetry. It is the joyous beginning of the salvation which Christ brings. A narrative that has nourished my faith (“How is it possible…For God nothing is impossible” Luke 1, vv 34-37) and determined my choices in life (“Behold the handmaid of the Lord” v 38). This connection was formed in front of the statue of Our Lady of Fatima at San Girolamo in Gubbio when I was 11 years old and has stayed with me for the rest of my life. In addition to the Magnificat, which is sung every day at Vespers, there are three passages from the Gospels to which I have always returned for reflection: “Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart” (Luke 2, v 19). At the marriage of Cana, at the very beginning of Jesus’s public mission, his mother said to those serving: “Whatever He says to you, do it” (John 2 v 5). These are the last of Mary’s words quoted in the Gospels. She could not have given us more valuable advice. Mary, the Mother of Jesus, has had an important role in the story of salvation: there is no Son without a Mother. And she should also have an important place in the lives of those who follow Jesus. Mary is also to be found under the Cross, the culmination of the mission: “When he saw His Mother and next to her his much-loved disciple, Jesus said to His Mother, ‘Woman, behold your son’. Then he said to the disciple: ‘Behold your mother’” (John 19, vv 26-27). John the Evangelist symbolizes all those who love Jesus and so live in communion and community with Mary. Mary’s presence in the Gospels is a function of her Son’s mission. It is an inestimable, but silent, presence. For this reason, at La Romita devotion to Our Lady is expressed in simplicity and sobriety, in keeping with the architecture of the church, the structure of the choir, the singing of the Magnificat, the Ave Maria and Francis’s greeting: “Hail Lady, Holy Queen…Hail His palace, hail His tabernacle, hail His house. Hail His robe, hail His handmaid, hail His Mother” (FF 259). In the centre of the Church of the Annunciation, in front of the altar, hangs the image of Christ, the Crucifix of San Damiano; in second place an icon of Mary with the baby in her arms; in third place, smaller, Cimabue’s image of Francis.

Excerpt from La Romita: Utopia?, Frate Bernardino, 2020
ISBN: 9788868081560

The Benedictine Chapel

The Benedictine Chapel

The Benedictine Chapel, restored by Francis in 1213, is the oldest building, the original nucleus of the Hermitage. The Saint arrived there from nearby San Gemini where they had told him about a beautiful and solitary spot in the woods suitable for meditation with an old chapel dedicated to Our Lady. On a panel in front of the altar, still visible in 1508, he engraved the words he composed (Exhortatio ad laudem Dei FF 265a) and painted putti, animals, birds and plants. After Francis’s visit, the Brothers constructed huts of branches and clay around the chapel to live in. It was the first Franciscan Community at La Romita. This little Chapel is dear and precious to us because Francis worked, prayed and sang here. It reminds us that he preferred churches that were small, isolated, rustic and hidden. Our little chapel measures only 6 square metres. This is where we came together in the early months, when the church was not yet usable, to hear the Word, pray, sing and draw strength for the restoration. We began our work in that oldest and most cherished spot. It is full of ancient energy, and you feel Francis’s presence there. We redid the roof, the floor, the door and the simple window. Now it is a perfect retreat for souls in need of silence, solitude and comfort. It is in fact the most tucked away and intimate corner of La Romita. For us it is a great honour to spend time in the Chapel that Francis repaired with his own blessed and industrious hands.

Excerpt from La Romita: Utopia?, Frate Bernardino, 2020
ISBN: 9788868081560

10 July – 2022

10 luglio 2022

Immense gratitude for the wonderful cloudless day, which, with a light breeze, welcomed the Ashes of Brother Bernadine for his last journey.
Once again he managed to unite us all in one great embrace of wonder and joy.

Laudato si’, mi’ Signore, per Frate Vento et per Aere et nubilo et sereno et onne tempo, per lo quale a le tue creature dà sustentamento.


Laudate et benedicete mi’ Signore’ et ringratiate et serviateli cum grande humilitate.

Canticle of the Sun, Saint Francis of Assisi