Tese di Pimonte Angel Trail
This itinerary was launched in 2006, thanks to an initiative by Don Catello Malafronte, Rector at the Santuario San Michele, and a number of associations (AGESCI, Gruppo del Rinnovamento, Club Alpino Italiano – Castellammare di Stabia Division and Gruppo Terre Alte, Naples Division), with the intention of reviving the ancient cult of the Archangel Michael on Monte Faito, and to rediscover all of the historical and natural aspects of a mountain that has always been significant to the economic and religious life of the Sorrento Peninsula.
It draws inspiration from the ancient tradition of devotion to the Archangel, which has its roots in the 6th century, when Bishop San Catello and Sant’Antonino, a monk, oversaw the construction of a small wooden oratory dedicated to the Archangel Michael at the top of what was then known as Monte Gauro. The cult of St. Michael at the ancient Shrine atop the peak of Il Molare (1444 metres above sea level), the highest peak of the Lattari Mountains, remained fairly active until 1863, when the Cathedral of Castellammare was forced to transfer the Statue of the Archangel Michael to the Cathedral of Castellammare di Stabia. At that time, the Lattari Mountains were overrun with bandits, who forced open the door of the Temple to use it for shelter.
The mountaintop Shrine soon fell into ruins, with all traces of it more or less lost. In 1937, at the initiative of the then Bishop Mons. Emanuel and thanks to the enthusiasm of numerous benefactors, including Rag. Sciarretta, Comm. Sagliocca and many others, a new Shrine was built on the nearby Monte Cercasole, completed on 24 September 1950 with the consecration of the new Church. On two occasions, in 1558 and 1782, pilgrims witnessed the miraculous event of large amounts of manna flowing from the statue of the Archangel. The cult of the Archangel has very old origins in Southern Italy, and Monte Faito is one of the most ancient sites of them all. It was particularly popular among the Lombard population in the South of Italy, and gave rise to numerous sites of worship dedicated to the Archangel: churches and chapels on mountaintops, high ground and in rocky grottos, and dedications to water springs, often on sites where ancient pagan temples had once stood. Significant among these is the famous Santuario di San Michele al Gargano, dating back to the 7th century. Our pilgrimage to Santuario di San Michele has three separate starting points: Castellammare di Stabia, Vico Equense and Pimonte.
Cooperativa il “Sentiero”
From: Castellammare di Stabia
To: Porta del Faito (Pimonte)
Distance: 7,16 Km