Friday of Week I of Lent

The Basilica of the Twelve Apostles was first built at this site in the 4th century, and was rebuilt two centuries later, dedicated to St. Philip and St. James Minor. In 866, Pope Stephen VI restored the church and walked barefoot across the city to bring the relics of the 2 apostles here. The basilica was rededicated to the twelve apostles in the 16th century.

Since 1474, the parish church has been administered by Conventual Franciscans, whose Generalate is adjacent to the church. Among its parishioners was Michelangelo (1475-1564), who was at first buried here but later transferred to the Basilica of the Holy Cross in Florence. While still a priest, Pope Sixtus V served here as pastor. Pope Clement XIV is buried in a chapel on the left side of the church.

The present Cardinal-Priest of the Titular Church is Cardinal Angelo Scola, Archbishop of Milan (largest see in Italy) and former Patriarch of Venice. He has been a favourite candidate tipped to be the next pope.

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