St. Salvator, Church of the Saviour

It was Hieronymus Schüssler, Dean of the San Candido/Innichen monastery, who had this chapel built and consecrated in 1594. A number of records mention the Bagni di San Candido/Wildbad spa bath, whose origins are thought to date back to early Medieval times, as being a very popular destination for many years.

In the year of consecration, Baroness Margareth von Spaur, a regular guest at the spa, donated a winged altarpiece and several church services to allow the spa dwellers to continue fulfilling their religious duties. The altarpiece has now been replaced with an accurate copy, and the original can be found on the northern wall of the transept at the monastery church in San Candido/Innichen. At its centre, Christ is depicted amongst the Princes of the Apostles, Peter and Paul. The chapel takes its name from St. Salvator, i. e. Christ the Saviour. The outside of the altarpiece wings shows Saint Anne, the mother of Mary, and St. Francis of Assisi receiving the stigmata. On the inside: the Visitation, the Baptism of Jesus, the Transfiguration of Jesus and the Fourteen Holy Helpers. On the predella, the altar platform: the Burial of Jesus at the centre, a portrait of Baroness Margareth von Spaur on the right and St. Jerome the Hermit on the left – a reference to the hermitage to which the chapel was linked up until 1786. At the back of this image, an interesting detail shows the spa bath in its late 16th century form.
Up until the onset of WWI, the spa was a first-rate health resort – today, only ruins are left of its former splendour. The medicinal waters of its mineral springs are now a top local export product, and thirsty hikers can sample wholesome water with different mineral content levels from a number of wells near the chapel.
When the spa bath closed in the 1930s, the chapel too fell into disuse. Decades went by and left it in bad shape. It was only quite recently that some work was done to repair and restore it to some extent. For now, it remains a charming stopover for hikers and passers-by offering a welcome place to rest and relax the body and mind.
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