Description

Basilica of Saint Mary Major is a Papal major basilica and the largest Catholic Marian church. The basilica enshrines the venerated image of Salus Populi Romani, depicting the Blessed Virgin Mary as the help and protectress of the Roman people, which was granted a Canonical coronation by Pope Gregory XVI on 15 August 1838 accompanied by his Papal bull Cælestis Regina. Pursuant to the Lateran Treaty of 1929 between the Holy See and Italy, the Basilica is within Italian territory and not the territory of the Vatican City State. However, the Holy See fully owns the Basilica, and Italy is legally obligated to recognize its full ownership thereof and to concede to it “the immunity granted by International Law to the headquarters of the diplomatic agents of foreign States.”

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