The Sanctuary of Martyr Saint Fermo Crusinallo

The Sanctuary of Martyr Saint Fermo

The sanctuary, located in the Crusinallo area – in a beautiful park that enjoys views of Omegna and Lake Orta – dates back to 1670 and is the most important sanctuary dedicated to the martyr in the Piedmont region. What we see today is the result of the evolution of a small 16th-century chapel, built at the behest of some members of the local community. During the 1600s, it became a modest oratory, dedicated to martyrs Fermo and Dorotea. The works to transform it in the church and bell tower we see today were completed in 1773. Inside, the single nave hosts the relics of Saint Fermo, a fresco depicting the martyr – dating back to the 16th century – on the left wall, an imposing 18-century wooden altar dedicated to Our Lady of the Angels and a splendid organ, by Alessandro Mentasti (1888). In the past 50 years, the sanctuary has gradually lost part of its original value but continues to attract many worshippers from the surrounding areas, especially during the celebrations that start on 2 August (in honour of Our Lady of the Angels) and last until 9 August.

The War Memorial dedicated to soldiers from Crusinallo, Cranna and Gattugno located in the apse – on the right wall of the Sanctuary of Saint Fermo – deserves a special mention. Over 200 names of men who gave their lives during the war are inscribed on three slates of marble, watched over by a graceful white-marble Madonna with Baby Jesus. Mutilated and with no arms, like many young men who returned from the war but remained disabled forever, the statue of the Madonna was found among the ruins of a small church on Monte Grappa and was donated to the church by Mario Nobili, major of the Italian alpine troops.