Today’s station church, the
, is dedicated to the 4th-century St. Nicholas of
(who became the popular Santa Claus). St. Nicholas never came to Rome, but this church was built over the site of a Byzantine-time prison, and St. Nicholas is the patron of
. The bishop-saint who participated in the
is especially popular among Greeks who inhabited this area in Rome.
The church is popular for its Marian devotions, especially Our Lady of Pompeii and Our Lady of Guadalupe. See this panorama of the interior of the basilica. Don’t miss the Basilica of St. Bartholomew across the bridge on the island, where the tomb of the apostle is found.
For the last 11 years, the protector of the Cardinal Title has been the Polish Zenon Grocholewski. He is the Prefect of the Congregation for Catholic Education, in charge of Catholic universities around the world and all Latin-rite seminaries in non-missionary dioceses.