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November 30, 2021

Minor Basilica (Latin: Basilica minor) is a title given to some Catholic churches. According to canon law, no Catholic church can be honored with the title of "basilica" without a decision of the Holy See. Nevertheless, the term minor basilica emerged to refer to churches of particular architecture. In the 18th century, the term took on a canonical meaning, unrelated to the architectural style to distinguish them from the four major basilicas which are located only in Rome.

Privileges attached to the title of minor basilica

The insignificant title of minor basilica confers on the church all the rights, privileges, prerogatives, honors and preeminence attached to this title. Thus, the faithful making a devotional visit to the basilica and participating there in a sacred rite or reciting at least the Sunday prayer or the symbol of faith can, under the usual conditions (confession, communion and prayer for the intentions of the Supreme Pontiff ) earn a plenary indulgence. The basilica has as emblems the tintinnabule and the half-open ombrellino. The pontifical sign, that is to say the saltire keys, can appear on the banners, the furniture and the seal of the basilica. The "rector" of the basilica has the right, in the exercise of his office, to use his cassock or his religious family clothing and his surplice, the black mosette, with braid, buttonholes and buttons. red in color.

Minor basilicas by continent

As of June 30, 2019, they numbered 1,802 worldwide, including 576 in Italy and 173 in France.

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Notes and references

Portal of Christian architecture Portal of Catholicism

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