Chiesa San Nicola di Bari

Albaneto / Leonessa, Lazio Italy

Roman Catholic

The church, dedicated to Albaneto's patron saint, dates from the 14th-15th centuries and sits at the top of the village. The three 17th century figures represent the three girls who received gold from St. Nicholas. Women bring baskets of "Pani di San Nicola" or "Pagnottelle di San Nicolas" (St. Nicholas loaves) to the church on the first Sunday in December. After they are blessed the women return home and distribute them to passersby. Fishermen also carry the loaves on their ships and toss them into the sea during storms as the loaves are believed to be able to calm the sea.