Perhaps the best words to use in briefly
describing the relationship to the Reformation of many of the sites you
will be seeing in Italy are preparation and opposition. For example, Milan
is the place of Augustine's conversion in A.D. 386. Several doctrines of
this church father were revived and given new meaning by the reformers.
Many of the places you will see showcase the Italian Renaissance, which
emphasized individual achievement and studies in classical literature,
both factors in laying the foundation of the Reformation. The dazzling
artistic achievements of Renaissance culture, however, hide the moral
degradation of the institutional church exposed by the literature of Dante
and the preaching of Savonarola. The epitome of opposition centers in Rome
itself and the Vatican. Here the papacy launched its multi-faceted
response to the Reformation, the devastating Counter-Reformation.
Day 1: Milan
After a good night's rest in your Milan Hotel, you will begin your
adventure in romantic Italy by visiting Santa Maria delle Grazie. This
Gothic-style church, originally constructed in 1490, and its adjoining
monastery reflect the glory of Renaissance Milan. In the monastery you
will see frescos that Leonardo da Vinci was commissioned to paint by his
patron Ludovico Sforza. The most famous is the ˙Last Supper˙ which
graces the far wall of the Refectory. Next you will see the huge Sforza
family fortress. Constructed in 1450, the Castelle Sforzesco is the site
of a fascinating museum of Renaissance collections. In the afternoon you
will tour Milan's tribute to five centuries of construction, the
magnificent Duomo (Cathedral). From the roof terraces, you may enjoy an
exhilarating view of Milan. Then it˙s on to the much older Church of
Saint Ambrose, followed by a tour of La Scala, the world's most famous
opera house. An evening opera excursion will be in the works if it can be
Day 2: Florence
This morning you will travel from Milan to Florence, the birthplace of the
Renaissance, and stop first at the Galleria dell'Academia to view
Michelangelo's incomparable "David." Close by is the
Convent/Museum of St. Mark, a former Dominican monastery which contains
important frescoes by Angelico and the cells of the fiery 15th century
pre-reformer Savonarola, once prior of St. Mark's. This afternoon you will
view the Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore and the Baptistery featuring
Ghiberti's bronze "Gates of Paradise." You will also see the
Bell Tower and Dante's house. Of course, you will not miss crossing the
first bridge built across the Arno, the famous Ponte Vecchio.
Day 3: Florence / Pisa
Today you will continue your interesting tour of Florence,
birthplace of Da Vinci and burial place of Michelangelo. You will see
where he is buried along with Galileo at the Santa Croce Church. You will
also stroll the Piazza Signoria (site of Savonarola's execution) and the
Piazzale Michelangelo. In the afternoon, you will travel toward the west
coast of Italy to Pisa to observe that "crazy" Tower and site of
the famous Council of Pisa (1409), an attempt to end the Great Schism of
the Catholic papacy. To round out the day, make your way by motorcoach to
Italy's capital, the "eternal city" of Rome. Here, at the final
destination of the tour, you will spend two nights and two days.
Day 4: Rome
There are so many ancient and modern marvels to see in this
grand city! In the morning, you will go directly to the site most people
want to see first: the great Colosseum, the place of Roman entertainment
at the expense of many Christian lives. Situated close by is the Arch of
Constantine, commemorating his defeat of Maxentius at the famous battle of
Milvian Bridge in A.D. 312. You will also see the remains of the hub of
ancient Roman life, the Forum, including Trajan's market and column, the
Arch of Septimus Severus, the first emperor to forbid conversion to
Christianity, and the Mamertine prison, traditional site of Peter's
imprisonment. The Catacombs invite you "underground" to observe
the ancient burial place of Christians, and later, you will visit the 4th
century Basilica of St. Paul Outside the Walls, the traditional site of
Paul's tomb. Time permitting, you will be able to see optional sites of
the Scala Sancta, Spanish Steps, the Trevi Fountain, the Pantheon, Piazza
Venezia and the monument to Victor Emmanuel.
Day 5: Rome
Most of this last day in Rome will actually be taken up with
"the city within the city" the Vatican, ancient site of the
papal residence and stunning works of art at every turn. You will visit
the Basilica of St. Peter, the Sistine Chapel, and the Vatican museums and
various galleries. The final stop will be Castel Sant'Angelo, the great
fortress guarding the Vatican. Leisure time is yours until the flight from
Rome this evening. Have a pleasant return home!
Day 6: Homeward
A morning fight will bring us home by mid-afternoon.
Extension Price Per Person: $1150.00
Attention Group Leader!
Pilgrim will customize this itinerary in any way that you wish. Ask one of
our professional tour planners about specific country "8-12 day"
church history tours of Switzerland, France, Scotland, Germany, or
Anabaptist, Lutheran, Wesleyan, and Covenant historical and doctrinal
study programs are not solely an interest of ours, but our delight.