Vatican City

FUN FACT: There are 594 people (2011) who can say that they have Vatican City citizenship. 

  • The site of many Christian martyrs
  • St. Peter was believed to have been crucified upside down here
  • Officially established in 1929 by the Lateran Treaty which made it a sovereign state inside of Rome with 110 acres and about 800 people 
  • Ruled by the pope who has absolute authority 
  • Fully brings together church AND state
  • Brief history of Vatican City here

The Sistine Chapel was AMAZING – I love seeing the history in PERSON. Reading the stories through the pictures and seeing the point of view of how Michelangelo interpreted the Bible was fascinating. 

  • Built between 1508-1512
  • The Last Judgment was Michelangelo’s greatest painting achievement
  • The ceiling shows creation, Adam and Eve, and the flood
  • The frescoes show the life of Jesus, the life of Moses, and Jesus giving the keys to Saint Peter

St. Peter’s Basilica:

  • A late renaissance church inside Vatican City.
  • Has the largest interior of any Christian church in the world. 
  • One of the holiest Catholic sites. 
  • In Catholic tradition it is recognized to be the burial place of St. Peter who was one of the 12 apostles of Jesus and the Bishop of Rome. 
  • There is historical evidence that St. Peter’s tomb is directly below the altar of the basilica and it has sparked interest in popes since the early Christian period.
  • A famous place for pilgrimages, liturgical functions, and historical associations.
  • Associated with papacy, counter-reformation, and numerous artists (mainly Michelangelo)
  • Greatest building of its age
  • Central space is dominated externally and internally by one of the largest domes in the world
  • Has massive gold ceilings 

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