Canale d’Agordo, birthplace of Albino Luciani, is a typical mountain village that has become a pilgrimage and religious tourism destination. Simplicity, humility, and a straightforward and authentic personality are the qualities that made the Smiling Pope so beloved, which you will find on the streets, in nature, and in authentic local people.
It was here that Pope John Paul I grew up and developed his vocation. Albino Luciani forged his values in this valley, surrounded by the Dolomites in Belluno, where life was simple and hard at times. The search for a real and true approach to people was a constant goal throughout his life, from the time he became a priest, then bishop, then Patriarch of Venice and Cardinal until he became the Pope.
By visiting Canale d’Agordo you can retrace the most significant places of the “33-day Pope.”
The Church of St. John the Baptist where he took the sacraments and where he began his spiritual journey. The house where he was born, a symbol of the Luciani Family’s affections and humble origins. The museum gives us an in-depth look at the teachings and life of John Paul I and the historical and environmental context in which he grew up. The Way of the Cross is dedicated to him. He played as a child and worked as a youth in the forests and valleys, lending a hand to his humble family.
Curiosities and suggestions
- On 4th September 2022, Albino Luciani was proclaimed Blessed by Pope Francis. A day of celebration, emotion and pride for the whole country gathered in John Paul I Square
- A lover of cinema, as vicar in Belluno, Albino Luciani pioneered the diocese’s movie forum
- In Canale d’Agordo (at the time Forno d’Agordo), Italy’s first cooperative dairy was founded in 1872. This was thanks to the insight of Father Antonio Della Lucia, a priest and advocate of the importance of cooperation between workers and farmers. To overcome distrust, Father Antonio became a dairyman buy buying milk and processing it in the rectory. With the results he convinced everyone that it was a good idea.
- As a child, “You couldn’t get him to sit still, he loved to jump on the desks, like he did with the hay, he used to pull the little girls’ braids” causing his teacher to give him a grade of 8/10 several times for his behaviour
- For the first time, the pope was using the first person singular and not using the first person plural. He did not want the papal tiara and celebrated mass with the mitre of bishops. He turned the Papal Coronation ceremony into a “celebration of the beginning of the ministry of universal Pastor”. These are the small, but extremely significant, gestures that Pope John Paul I made that spearheaded a substantial change in the conception of the figure of the Pope.