Our Lady of Mondevi, Piedmont (1540)
Our Lady of Mondevi, also known as the Madonna della Mondevi, is located at Vic, in Piedmont, Italy. There a picture was found upon which a tile-maker had painted and placed on a brick pillar which he had erected for that purpose. This pillar has since been enclosed in a church which was built in the year 1645 at the behest of Maria Cristina of France, in memory of the miraculous rescue of a child from the river, which took place in 1644 through the invocation of the image of the Blessed Virgin of the Annunciation, as the image had also come to be known. Since that time there have been many miracles which have been wrought and continue to attract a great concourse of people.
Originally, the image of this Piedmontese shrine is said to have been depicted on a pillar by a charcoal burner of Vicoforte, about the year 1540. The sanctuary of Madonna del Pilone is outside the city and it was completed about 1730.
The charcoal burners formed what was known as the Carbonari; at first an organization similar to the medieval guilds, whose prime purpose was efficiency and spirituality. However, the group ended in becoming a secret organization that was particularly political, while possibly also spreading revolution to Spain, France, and other countries.
The image of Our Lady of Mondevi was drawn on a pillar during the days of great devotion to Our Lady. It contains so much art that painters try to emulate it, but in vain. The peasant folk especially venerated Our Lady at this shrine, and obtained numerous favors from her.
The church was enlarged in 1779 and equipped with a baptistery in 1807. Inside, enriched with precious furnishings donated by the Savoy princes and frescoes by Bartolomeo Guidobono and others, is kept on the altar of the miraculous image of the Annunciation. The original image has been almost completely repainted in twentieth-century restorations.