As legend goes, the oldest place of worship in Caorle
Little is accurately known about the construction of the Church of the Blessed Virgin of the Angel. The story goes it was built at the initiative of peasants fleeing from the barbarians who ravaged Concordia Sagittaria back in the 9th century. They dedicated the church to Archangel Michael.
Several centuries after, the church gained a new patron saint: Virgin Mary. Legend sheds light on this particular tradition too: seeing a light afar on the see, several fishermen head for the sign and discover the floating statue of Mary with Child on a heavy marble block. After carrying it ashore, much to the surprise of all locals, no one manages to carry it further inland, not even the clergy of the place. Upon the call of the bishop, of group of young lads achieve what the old couldn’t, due to their unspoiled spirits. Since then, the name of the church has been Madonna (or Blessed Virgin) of the Angel.
The church is said to contain two chief proofs of the latter legend: a block of stone (allegedly, the one on which the statue was found) and a copy of the original Mary with Child Jesus (the original, carved in wood, was destroyed in a fire in 1923; the replica was made after a pictorial representation of the original). Locals are very fond of this small place of worship located by the sea. Not only the church, but the cult of the Virgin is of great importance: every five years the so-called feast of the Virgin of the Angel is held in Caorle. On top of that, the yearly agenda sees the coming of Feast of Coronation, the highlight of which is a fireworks show (referred to by the locals as the "fire of the bell tower").
Speaking of the bell tower, this one was built no sooner than the 13th century to military purposes (used to signalize the danger of invasion). It overtops the modest church with its sturdy prismatic shape and conic cusp.
Inside, you can stroll around and admire the several artistic achievements that ornate the church. One of the oldest, an Archangel Michael in high relief, work of Andrea Dell'Aquila dating back to 1595, embellishes the central wall of the High Chapel. Figures of Venetian patriarchs can be seen painted on walls, e.g. Pope Pius X (work of M. Bressanin, executed in 1956) on the left wall. Another work of art of a more recent date is Gino Filippi di Portogruaro’s fresco depicting the Virgin emerging from the sea accompanied by the four Evangelists (completed in 1948).
As a plus, the church is located conveniently close to Spiaggia di Levante (the east beach of Caorle), so you won’t have to sacrifice too much of your time dedicated to sunbathing by engaging into a trip further inland, if the church were to be located anywhere else.
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Locals of Caorle maintain an active Marian cult. Festa della Madonna dell'Angelo, held every five years, is one of the most important religious events
Attend the so-called Festa della Madonna dell'Angelo of Caorle to see locals’ ways of expressing their dedication and gratitude to the Virgin.
Have fun, keep fit and dominate your opponent: play tennis if you love the game and enjoy the tourist opportunities of Caorle to the full.