Major cleaning in the holy halls: In the Vatican, all of St. Peter’s Basilica along with the chambers of Pope Francis and other buildings are disinfected daily with Würth products. This protects the pontiff, the Roman Curia, and religious believers from being infected with the coronavirus.
It is an unusual spectacle in Rome’s St. Peter’s Basilica: Cleaners in white full-body protective suits, armed with disposable rubber gloves, respiratory masks and safety goggles, scour every last inch of the largest Catholic house of God. They spray the floors, stairs, columns, statues, banisters, and altars with disinfectant and then clean them thoroughly and with great care by hand. They repeat the process each day all over again. If Saint Peter’s Basilica is to remain open to the public during the corona pandemic, there is no other option.
The Vatican represents the nucleus of Catholicism, encompassing the incumbent pope in Rome along with the Roman Curia, the highest administrative body of the Catholic Church. However, the name stands for the Vatican City State, the smallest recognized sovereign state on earth. The Vatican is home to several famous works of architecture, including St. Peter’s Basilica with St. Peter’s Square, the Apostolic Palace, and the Vatican Gardens.
After the outbreak of the pandemic, Italy suffered heavily from the consequences of the virus. In the wake of precautionary measures, Saint Peter’s Basilica was closed for several weeks, only reopening its gates in mid-May to believers from around the world. The lockdown lasted for a total of 68 days. Since then, it has been possible to celebrate mass again in the opulent place of worship. Admittedly with safety precautions: Since the onset of the corona crisis in Italy, the Vatican has relied on professional protective workwear, spray pumps, and disinfectants from Würth Italy in order to keep the buildings in the Holy City free of the virus, thus safeguarding the Roman Curia and tourists visiting Rome from being infected with COVID-19.
In addition, the Vatican has developed a hygiene and safety concept. Since the beginning of March, when the lockdown was implemented, each and every accessible surface in the 20,000-square-meter cathedral has been diligently disinfected. Numerous other buildings in the Vatican City, such as the Apostolic Palace, the Domus Sanctae Marthae guest house, various offices, and the private chambers of Pope Francis have been meticulously cleaned and disinfected on a daily basis ever since. The Vatican sends more than 100 specially trained cleaning personnel through the buildings on several shifts in accordance with a strict schedule.
In this multi-phase process, each individual room is tackled with Würth products for approximately four hours. The Papal apartments are even cleaned each time His Holiness enters or exits the rooms. Hand sanitizer, germicidal disinfectant with lemon fragrance, the sanitizing cleaner Ultrasan, and the germicidal disinfectant Polar Ice are all used for this purpose.
“IT IS AN HONOR FOR WÜRTH ITALY TO SUPPORT THE VATICAN IN PROTECTING THE POPE AND IS VISITORS.”
This is not the first time that Würth has worked with the Vatican. We established a business relationship back in 1986. In 2016, contact was resumed on the spur of the moment. “A representative of the Vatican called us to order some screws,” recounted Stefano Brilli, Key Account Manager at Würth Italy. Together with sales representative Marco Barbini, he has been serving the prominent customer ever since. Both of them have continued to serve as indispensable contacts for the representatives in the Vatican during the corona crisis. Stefano Brilli: “Thanks to Würth’s products, it is possible to ensure people safe access to the basilica and the other buildings.” Marco Barbini added: “It is an honor for Würth Italy to support the Vatican in protecting the Pope and its visitors. Our collaboration is based on mutual appreciation. We consider ourselves to be a small member of the Vatican family.”
Würth Italy, founded in 1963, supplies 240,000 customers from the automobile, craft, construction, and industry sectors, including the Vatican. Customers in Italy are served by around 3,500 employees, roughly 2,300 of whom are on the sales force. There are over 170 pick-up shops across the entire country. Würth Italy generated a sales volume of EUR 540 million in 2019. Its core product range contains more than 125,000 items: from screws, screw accessories and anchors to tools, chemical products and personal protective equipment.