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Living Stones Group Firenze 
Contact: Cristina Caravello – [email protected]  


Free Guided Tours 

Chiesa di San Salvatore a Ognissanti

March 25, 2017
April 29, 2017
May 20, 2017
June 10, 2017


Santissima Annunziata 

By appointment only


For further information see Calendar and Facebook


The Living Stones group Firenze meets every Monday at 8:30 pm at Chiesa di San Salvatore a Ognissanti, Via Borgognissanti 42, Firenze. Download the program of the next meetings.


Our Community

The idea of a Living Stones presence in Florence was born in occasion of the Taizé New Year’s Eve 2012 in Rome, along with the dream of starting a new community in our city, ready to welcome the many visitors who daily cross its streets!

Renowned for being one of the most important capital of Arts worldwide, Florence treasures of spirituality are often forgotten, hidden or locked in museums, and this has been the challenge as complex as exciting for our group!
Our desire was to let people experiencing an “encounter” when they visit our masterpieces because they can discover, beyond the artwork, the spirit which animates it and brought it to life. This urged us to start a path of formation and prayer which at once bore much fruit!

We started in June 2013 by organizing, together with the monastic order of Jerusalem based on the church of the Badia of Florence, an international camp of formation which involved a hundred young people from all over Europe who went through a full-immersion of study and sharing about art and faith.
As a result of this experience, a small group of young people living in Florence began to take their first steps, praying together and looking for a place which could correspond to their wish to prove themselves as Living Stones.

And that is how we approached one of the most significant sites of the city: the Basilica della Santissima Annunziata (Basilica of the Most Holy Annunciation).

Currently our community is formed by 6 people, students and workers, including an art historian who takes care especially of the formation about art and history, a dominican nun and a Jesuit who leads our path of spiritual growth and the theological aspects of our formation. Every 2 weeks we meet to pray together according to Ignatian spirituality starting from sacred texts concerning the artworks of our churches of service, we take inspiration from short thoughts and reflections and spend some time in personal meditation, and we finish with a group sharing.
This is the richest moment of community life, which allows us to undertake a real path of growth, both human and spiritual, and which nurture in us a desire of announcing and sharing what we experienced in our intimacy.
One Sunday a month we meet from the morning for a time of specific formation on issues of art and spirituality, we have lunch together and in the afternoon we are on service providing free guided tours in the church, where we welcome tourists passers-by, parish people and visitors, to inform them about the wonders which, with surprise, we have first discovered and experienced!
The visits are concluded by a moment of sharing and common prayer.


Brief Description of the Monument

Founded on the 25th of March in 1250 by the Servi di Maria (Servite Order), pretty Florence-bounded religious order, the Basilica of the Most Holy Annunciation has been a symbol of Catholic orthodoxy under the dedication to the Mother of God, growing alongside Faith contents and civic values, even before it became a famous shrine hosting the image of the Virgin on Annunciation, which was venerated here since 1252. According to tradition the artist-friar Bartolomeo, about to complete the fresco, found out that the face of Mary was already been painted, and it was since then believed a miraculous intervention!
This place encloses a wealth of spiritual and artistic works, witnessing the many graces that were asked and received here.

Each century left a token of renowned artists such as Perugino, Andrea del Castagno, Alessio Baldovinetti in the 15th, and in the following century the church became the first seat of the The Accademia delle Arti del Disegno (Academy of the Arts of Drawing), under the direction of the great Michelangelo, whose meetings used to take place in the nowadays Chapel of Saint Luke. Masterpieces are displayed, then, painted by Andrea del Sarto, Pontormo, Rossellino, Vasari, Michelozzo and Leon Battista Alberti, but also later artworks and much rare in the context of Florence, such as the baroque chapel of the Feroni’s family, designed by Giovan Battista Foggini, and the wooden intarsia roof by Ciro Ferri.

In 2016 we started a new formation concerning another jewel-church of the city: the Basilica of San Miniato al Monte! This is one of the oldest churches in Florence and is frequently called the finest Romanesque basilica in all of Italy. The construction of the church as we know it today was started around 1018 and took over one hundred years to complete. It is in a wonderful state of preservation and there are several important works inside, including a tabernacle attributed to Rossellino, the tomb of the Cardinal of Portugal with works by Rossellino, Della Robbia and others, frescoes by Agnolo Gaddi, and an amazing fresco cycle of the life of St. Benedict by Spinello Aretino, to name just some of them.