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Mahe TOURISM

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St. Theresa’s Church

The Shrine of St. Teresa of Avila on the Kozhikode- Kannur Road is one of the oldest shrines in India and probably the oldest in Malabar. Large number of devotees will flow during the main feast days, October 14 and October 15, every year. During the French rule a committee including the Mayor of Mahe, managed the affairs of the church.

The church got damaged during the war between French and British forces in 1960. Then it was re-constructed in 1788. In 1956, the entire church was renovated. According to a historical document Revd. Father Dominic of St. John of the Cross, O.C.D, an Italian, came to Mahe and established the Mahe Mission in 1723. Once, as the legend goes, a ship was sailing through the Arabian Sea in Malabar. When it reached the horizon of Mahe the ship got stuck up.

The shrine of St. Teresa was created in 1736.  A large clock was fixed on it in 1855.  The captain of the ship after a prolonged effort to move it, found to his surprise, a statue of St. Theresa which he brought to the shore where he constructed a place for erecting this statue. Then the crew of the ship thought that the will of St. Teresa of Avila that the statue be enshrined in that place. Thus they have constructed the church. Another legend is that the the small wooden statue was found by the fishermen in the sea.

It is only after this , that as the myth has it, the ship could sail again. In course of time, that place became the famous church. The annual feast of St. Theresa of Avila is celebrated in this church every year from 5 th to 22 nd October. It lies on the main road, the most famous Christian church in Malabar. The church was built during French Reign and it stands as a monument to the legacy of French rule. For the entire people of Mahe consider this church as their own. The people all over Kerala and from neighbouring Districts of Kerala come and visit the church during this festival.

Pondicherry | Karaikal | Mahe | Yanam

   


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