stairs

There are some stairs I saw on TV that Christians climb on their knees.. They are believed to be the stairs Jesus climbed the day he was dragged to his trial. Does anyone know what I am talking about?? Michelle Valrico FL

Posted by Rose
NYC
922 posts

You are asking about the Scala Sancta in Rome, located in Piazza San Giovanni in Laterano, across the piazza from the beautiful Archbasilica of St. John Lateran: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scala_Sancta http://www.reidsitaly.com/destinations/lazio/rome/sights/scala_santa.html When I was in Rome in December I heard that the Scala Sancta is only open on certain days. We visited the Archbasilica but didn't have time to go to the Scala Sancta so I didn't find out for sure.

Posted by Rose
NYC
922 posts

It's also famously done by pilgrims at the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Mexico City, where pilgrims crawl on their knees for miles as they approach the Basilica. Because the question was posted on the 'To the Boot' board, I assumed it might be asking about Rome.

Posted by Rose
NYC
922 posts

The Scala Sancta is in Rome. Take Metro Line A (Direction: Anagnina) and get off at San Giovanni, short walk from there. The Vatican is also in Rome but on the other side of the city. Please spend some time with a guidebook and Google Maps to familiarize yourself with Rome and the sites you can see there.

Posted by David
Walnut Creek
68 posts

If you do get to the stairs, there are two ways up to the top. If you want to go up the sacred stairs, you have to do it crawling up on your knees. Having done it, it is not for anyone with weak or arthritic knees. They are hard wooden stairs, people in front of you stop a each step to say a prayer. Knee pads would have definitely helped. There is an alternative stairway on the side that you can walk up. However, if you are going to just walk up, why bother going. It's for the experience of going up the stairs on your knees as a sign of devotion. Just be prepared. Have fun.

Posted by Michelle
Valrico, FL, USA
120 posts

Yes that is exactly what I want to do. is go up the stairs Jesus went up on my knees. Michelle

Posted by Anita
Long Beach, California, USA
547 posts

I have been there...the Scala Sancta in Rome. It's a 15 minute walk or so east of the Colleseum. I believe there is a metro stop that is closer but we wanted to see several other things along the way in the neighborhood. It is open and those who wish to are welcome to ascend the stairs. When we were there in the afternoon it was practically empty. There are small "windows" on the stairs that protect and allow you to see what is said the be drops of Christ's blood. It is a moving place. If I remember correctly you are not allowed to take pictures.

Posted by Barb
Andover, MN, USA
110 posts

Jesus was never in Rome. He was crucified in Jerusalem. It was St. Peter that was martyred in Rome. Barb

Posted by David
Walnut Creek
68 posts

By the way, the stairs are not open all the time. They tend to be open for couple hours in the morning, close for lunch, then reopen for couple hours in the afternoon. So if you go, check for when it is open. There is also no guarantee that it is open every day of the week. I'm not sure where you would find the opening times and days. I just sort went there around lunch time. It was closed. I spent an hour checking out St. John Laterin church. By the time I was done, the steps had reopened.

Posted by Michael
Seattle, WA, USA
5734 posts

Barb, if you had followed that Wikipedia link, you would have read this right at the beginning:
"The stairs were, reputedly, brought to Rome by St. Helena in the 4th century. For centuries, the Scala Santa has attracted Christian pilgrims who wished to honor the Passion of Jesus."

Posted by Michael
Seattle, WA, USA
5734 posts

It certainly is worth it while in the area to check out the Basilica San Giovanni in Laterano. Not only is the main space amazing, but they have a beautiful cloister/courtyard as well. The basilica is free to enter, but the cloister is like 5 euros.