The origins of the site are very ancient even if there is no definite information until 1223, when it appears to be under the jurisdiction of the Municipality of Bologna and the Counts of Campeggio. In 1784, after having been governed by the Pieve di Barbarolo, it passed to the parish of Monghidoro.
It is named after Our Lady of Lourdes because of the Lourdes Massabielle chapel is reproduced a side chapel to the right of the church dedicated to Saint Prosper.
The work is by Guelfo Ravasio, a talented craftsman from Bergamo, who depicted the Immaculate Mary with Bernardette at her feet and the brook inspired by the miraculous spring of Lourdes.
Through a passageway behind the rock, it is possible to approach the statue of the Virgin Mary and this detail, as well as the numerous testimonies of graces bestowed here made Campeggio so popular that it earned the name of the “Little Lourdes of Bologna”.
The bell tower dates to the early 1700s and the current place of worship dates to the late 1800s.
The large legacy of artworks and precious artefacts found here are the merit of Father Augusto Bonafè, who donated much of his own property to enhance the church.
The work of this archpriest was extraordinarily effective, beginning in 1919 and lasting twenty-five years. In 1923, returning from one of his pilgrimages to Lourdes, he decided to work on an authentic reconstruction of the grotto.
Campeggio has always been a place of great devotion to Mary that has grown progressively stronger in neighbouring communities.
During the First World War, from 1915 to 1918, it became a destination for daily pilgrimages arriving from both Bologna and Florence.
Inspired by his devotion to the Virgin Mary, in a very short time Father Bonafè was able to fund the construction of various works outside the shrine, including statues, a Via Crucis leading to Mount Calvario built in 1936, Viale dei Parroci in 1924, Viale delle Rimembranze the following year, and last but not least, the construction of an aqueduct.
All his parishioners supported him in this undertaking, which made Campeggio one of the leading pilgrimage destinations from the two cities.
VIA MATER DEI The Camino of the Marian Sanctuaries of the Bolognese Apennines
Foiatonda Cooperativa di comunità
Via della Libertà, 2 - Madonna dei Fornelli
40048 San Benedetto Val di Sambro (BO)