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Today we visit San Sisto Vecchio, Saint Sixtus the Old. Named ‘the old’ because it is the oldest monastery in Rome.
Twice throughout our Lenten Station pilgrimage I’ve mentioned the story of Saint Lawrence meeting up with Pope Saint Sixtus II while the Holy Father was headed towards his martyrdom. This church is built over the spot where the meeting took place.
First built in the fourth century, it was known as Titulus Trigridae Named for the owner of the land. The church was rebuilt by Innocent III, shortly thereafter, it was given to Saint Dominic, who established a Dominican convent here. He lived in the monastery for some time before moving to Santa Sabina, the first church we visited.
The relics of Pope Saint Sixtus II were moved here from the San Callisto Catacombs in the sixth century.