The foundation stone of the International College of Saint Albert in Rome was laid on July 20, 1899 by His Eminence Vincenzo Vannutelli, the Cardinal protector of the Order. The construction of the first two floors was completed in 1901, just in time for the opening of the academic year. Unfortunately Fr. Aloysius Galli, the Prior General of the Carmelite Order who launched the venture in the first place, did not live to see its completion, as he died unexpectedly on May 2, 1900.
It was felt, even during the first ten years, that the college building would have to be extended. And so in 1922 work on the third floor was begun and was completed the following year. The foundation stone of the adjoining chapel was laid in May 1925 and the chapel completed on January 6, 1928.
The initial purpose of the college was to provide a house of studies for Carmelite students in formation. In practice however, much depended on the superiors of the day, and Carmelite students often attended other universities over the years. In 1985 the Council of Provinces defined the college as: "A centre of international unity for the Order, where formation, Carmelite spirituality and other studies are fostered." Initial formation in the college was discontinued and its name was changed to Centro Internazionale Sant'Alberto (CISA)
In 1998, with the Jubilee Year of 2000 in view, the building of St. Albert's International Centre was completely restructured and divided in two independent sections: the "International Centre of St. Albert" for Carmelite students and the "Domus Carmelitana" to welcome pilgrims.
At present the International Centre of St. Albert has a community of about 25 religious coming from different countries and various Provinces of the Carmelite Order. The religious are working in the Carmelite Institute, the Library, in further studies or in the running of the house.
For further information, contact:
Fr. Miceal Oneill, O.Carm, prior
International Centre of St. Albert
Via Sforza Pallavicini, 10; 00193 Rome - Italy.
Tel: +39-06-6810081 Fax: +39-06-68307200
Email: cisa @ ocarm.org