(Vatican Radio) Look through any tourist guide and you’ll find the Basilica of San Clemente high up on the list of places to visit in Rome.
Situated just a stone’s throw away from the Colosseum, this archaeological treasure trove which is famous the world over, is a three-tiered complex of buildings which features spectacular mosaics and frescos.
But this Basilica is not just a place of art and history, it’s also a living breathing church where locals and pilgrims alike can come for the celebration of Holy Mass, and avail of the Sacrament of Reconciliation.
The Basilica of San Clemente has been under the care of the Irish Dominican Order since 1667 and over the centuries the community has continued with excavation and restoration projects.
The current Rector of this ancient Basilica is Fr Thomas McCarthy and in this the first in a series of three programmes, he talks to Lydia O’Kane about this very special place in the heart of Rome.
In the next edition Fr Thomas McCarthy takes Lydia O’Kane on a tour of the 12th century level of San Clemente exploring the magnificent mosaics and frescos it contains.