Earthquake shakes Italy and destroys Benedictine cathedral

     Yesterday a 6.6 magnitude earthquake shook Italy which has been the strongest to strike the country in thirty-six years. The quake came after two jarring jolts last week and a large shake that killed nearly three hundred people this past August.

     The country and many of its historical buildings have withstood the previous earthquakes, but it seemed this last one proved to be too much for the ancient buildings. During this disaster, the Benedictine cathedral toppled along with several other historical sites.

     There were no immediate reports of death, but twenty were reported injured. This unusually low number of minor injuries is largely due to the fact that many residents left their homes in the wake of the previous shakes. And some 3,600 people have been relocated after yesterday.

     The Italian government had secured 40 million euros last week in wake of the previous earthquakes that shook the country, and local officials are confident that they will bounce back. “We will rebuild everything,” Premier Matteo Renzi said according to “We are dealing with marvelous territories, territories of beauty.”

     The epicenter of the quake was near the ancient city of Norcia, the birthplace of St. Benedict, who is the father of monasticism. The city housed the Benedictine monastery, which fell to the ground, leaving only a shadow of its former glory in its wake. Norcia was not the only historically important town that the quake affected, as the epicenter was close to a cluster of small mountainous cities that are known for their rich history.

     Although this earthquake is the worst one Italy has experienced in a while, this is not the deadliest by far. In 1980, a quake hit Messina and killed tens of thousands of people, so many officials and residents alike, especially ones who went through the Messina quake, are thanking their lucky stars that there have been no reported casualties.