RS prettau ahrntal winter heilig geist heiliggeist kirche bei kasern
RS prettau ahrntal winter heilig geist heiliggeist kirche bei kasern

Holy Spirit Church

At the head of the Valle Aurina, strictly speaking in Casere, there is a cultural jewel dating back to the 15th century.

One of the most beautiful pilgrimage sites of South Tyrol is located at the head of the Valle Aurina in Casere. The Holy Spirit Church originally used to be a chapel for miners of the mine of Predoi and also served as shelter for travellers, walking from the Passo dei Tauri to Salzburg or the Pinzgau area. The exact construction date of this church is still unknown. According to a legend, a bell rang on exactly this place on earth. When people started digging for this bell, they found a picture of the Holy Spirit. Even if it was removed from this place, it was found again and again behind the stone next to which the chapel was built, obviously dedicated to the Holy Spirit.

The first documents date back to 1455, year in which the Arch Bishop of Bressanone, Cardinal Nikolaus Cusanus, consecrated this church and the cemetery. In 1500 the church was enlarged, in the course of these works pieces of art were removed, which have been added again in 1981 to the church, protected by a safe. Further pieces of art that can be admired in the church are the illustration of the Holy Trinity behind the tabernacle as well as wooden statues of St Oswald, St Kilian, St Ursula, St Francis and St Andrew. Due to the large number of frescos, the chapel is also a precious jewel from an artistic viewpoint.

However, the Holy Spirit Church is first of all known for the shot-through cross which, according to a legend, originally was located at the Prastmann farm. A shooter, who intended to walk to Pinzgau in order to take part in a shooting competition, wanted to test his shooting skills once again and shot on the cross in a outrageous manner. Once he reached Pinzgau, he was successful and he won a bull as a prize. When the two passed at the shot cross on their walk home, the bull immediately raged and rioted and killed the shooter. The Via Crucis of Casere takes from the village to this chapel and is lined by roofed wooden pillars with wall reliefs which were realised by youth groups of the valley as well as the wood carving school of San Giacomo, illustrating the life of Jesus.

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