Basilica of Our Lady Help of Christians, Turin

The Mary Help Basilica ( Italian: Basilica di Mary Help of Christians ) in Turin Valdocco is the Mother House of the Salesians of Don Bosco and was built by Don Bosco.


The Catholic church is incorporated into the sprawling complex of the Oratory of Valdocco, consisting of the actual youth recreational facility, school buildings, the Franz-von- Sales Church, the Provincial of the Province of Piedmont, Pinardi chapel and the Italian Missionsprokur of the Salesians of Don Bosco. The surrounding buildings originate exclusively from the time of second half of the 19th and early 20th century.


After the Pinardi chapel (1846 ) and the Church of St. Francis de Sales ( 1852), the growing number of young people could no longer absorb, Don Bosco began after excavation of the site (Fall 1863) in the spring of 1864, the Mary Help Basilica. construct Its façade is reminiscent of San Giorgio Maggiore in Venice, the great dome wearing a golden statue whose head is surrounded by a circle of stars. The main altarpiece by the painter Loren zone represents Mary, Help of Christians is at her side choirs of angels at her feet, the 12 apostles.

1934, the year of the canonization of Don Bosco, an extension was again necessary, which was planned and executed by the architect Mario Ceradini and the Salesian brother Giulio Valotti. The construction of the second dome with 12 m diameter brought the enlargement of the chancel and the reset of the main altar with him. In addition, two side chapels were built with the associated galleries.


The basilica is the goal of many pilgrims from all over the world. One reason for this is that here the work of Don Bosco had its beginning, and that the church houses the mortal remains of Don Bosco, Maria Mazzarello and Dominic Savio. On Patronatstag (May 24 ) a Mary Help statue is annually conducted in procession through the town, on which several tens of thousands of people participate. This festival is transmitted via television and radio in the world.