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Database: Santa Maria dei Carmini

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REBECCAC84: If you’d skipped this entry, you’d be on top of that church by now.

Built in the 1300s, Santa Maria dei Carmini (Carmini for short) was founded by a group of women who made their livelihood stitching monastic aprons for the monks in a nearby Carmelite monastery.

Carmelites believed so much in these aprons, or scapulars, that the Carmelite Constitution stated it was a serious fault to sleep without one and saying Mass sans scapular resulted in automatic excommunication. Why? Because in 1251, The Virgin Mary made herself known to Simon Stock of Cambridge, and she told him that those who were a brown scapular would be granted salvation.

So, 200 years later, a group of women still huddle inside Santa Maria dei Carmini, working all their lives to manufacture salvation, distilled in the form of brown aprons.

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