The Origins of the ‘Pieve’ (old Italian parish)
The parish church of St. John the Baptist in Canale d’Agordo is also called Church of the "Pieve", where the word "Pieve" stands for "an old italian parish". This is the place where Albino Luciani completed his baptismal rituals, after he was given baptism at home by the hands of Maria Fiocco, his midwife. On 19 October 1912 he was taken to the holy font where Achille Ronzon, the chaplain, completed the service by proxy of Giovanni Battista Zanetti, the archpriest of Canale d’Agordo. In this church, little Albino grew up and took part into catechism. He was an altar boy from the age of five.
He got the sacraments of First Confession, First Communion and Confirmation in here. Besides, he celebrated his first mass on 8 July 1935 in this church, too. When he was named chaplain in Canale d’Agordo from July to December 1935, he regularly taught catechism, confessed children, celebrated masses at the high altar and at the side altar of the Blessed Virgin of Lourdes and he even played the organ when the organist was absent. He very often came back to this church in his life until 1978. He got there to celebrate his ordination as a bishop in January 1959. When he was ordained Patriarch of Venice in February 1970, he returned to the Pieve church for the Lent Sermon in March 1978.