In the ancient hamlet of San Lorenzo, a church with the same name used to exist before the 14th century, as two stone tablets now housed in Verona’s Museo Civico bear witness. After the original was demolished, a replacement was built in the center of Soave in 1303, where it can be admired in all its monumentality.
Torn down in 1744 because it was too small, it was rebuilt in 1758 with the help of the city government and the people. It was enlarged in 1884 under the direction of the abbot-architect Gottardi.
Gottardi also transformed the façade into a Renaissance style, with Ionic columns and a staircase made out of Rosso di Verona marble. The church has one nave, with baroque altars and excellent paintings. The most important altarpiece is the one by Francesco Morone, the most illustrious Veronese painter of the 16th century. Created in 1529, it depicts San Rocco, an enthroned Madonna and Child, San Gioacchino, as well as God, in the lunette. Other paintings of value include works by Farinati (16th cent.), Cignaroli (17th cent.), Ugolini (19th cent.), Nalin’s large “Glory of Saint Lawrence” fresco in the main nave (19th cent.), and Mattielli’s “The Good Shepherd” and “These Are My Treasures” in the ceiling extension towards the altar (both 20th cent.).
The wooden statue representing the Redeemer is of particular note. It was sculpted in 1553 by Venetian Paolo Campsa. The classical style bell tower sports triple windows and was designed by Luigi Trezza. In addition to the artwork, the beautiful organ, built by the Englishman George Trice in 1889, should also be admired. Due to its solemn and powerful sound, sacred music concerts are often held here.