Friday, January 10, 2014

Churches at Old goa

Prologue :   The idea of discovering Goa from various angles, each time one visits Goa is novel.  We deliberately avoided the beaches of Goa, regular haunts such Dona Paula, Dolphin watch bay, Science Museum, River cruise, etc and concentrated on Forts and Churches of Goa.  I have already penned travelogue on Bom Jesus Bascilica, Se Cathedral, Augustine Tower, St Francis of Assisi Church, but apart from these world heritage churches there are innumerable number of ancient churches wherein some are disbanded for masses while others are retained for their antiquity.  Let us now explore them from the angle of our visit, rest of them i will list out for my next outing in Goa. 

This is the first church one can witness as we enter Old Goa which is close the ferry wharf located nearby to cross the Mondovi river, unfortunately there is no mention of the church name nor any clue anywhere if somebody can identify the church it would serve the purpose.

St Peters Church Sao :  This church is located close to the river bed, it was constructed in 1543 at the expense of Public treasury.  It was one of the 8 old parish in Old Goa.  This church was declared a national monument in 1930.  It is more closer to Panjim and close to a river ferry point.  It caters to a small segment of Catholic family who were believers in St Peter ( prince of Apostles Sao Pedro ) who was one of Apostle’s of Lord Jesus.

There is a small symbol mentioning it is a old monument, whether it was a palace or a mosque is subject to speculation.  But this has been totally demolished and only the barracks remain in its place and its gateway.

There are some ships which are anchored on the banks of this premises which is now used to ferry sand and other commercial activities connected with fishing etc.

 Ferry sets sail to the isle nearby.  It is a lovely area situated in Tiswadi enroute to Old Goa

Gateway of the College of St Paul :  Situated the South OF St Cajetan’s Church on the main road leading to Ponda, is the gateway which formed the enterance to the College of St Paul’s Which was St Francis Xaviers.  The college was completed in 1542 and collegiate Church was consecrated in 1543.  What now remains of the facade in the shape of an arch is the gate.
On either side of the arch is a column of the Corinthian order on a raised plinth.  The structure is built of leterite stones and lime plastered. 
The  college was said to have built on the ruins of a mosque of which nothing remains today.  It was established to impart knowledge of seminary to converts of all religions and nationality.  For some time St Francis Xavier stayed in the college premises.  The outbreak of the an epidemic in 1570            forced the inmates to vacate the premises, leading to abandonment.  However it continued to be principal institution of Jesuits in India.  The govt of Portugal ordered the demolition of ruined building in 1832 and transported tthe materials for construction to Panjim.  The existing ruins of the gateway was constructed in 1542. 
St Paul’s college site is a centrally protected monument situated to the west of St Paul’s Gate in Old Goa.  It was proposed to carry out a small trial of excavation to expose the buried structure to throw light on the layout.  There is plenty of coconut trees grown in the site. 

Chapel of our Lady of the mount Mary :
One has to proceed towards the mount off Se Cathedral up the hill for 2 kms, towards the north of Cross.  The road leading to the hillock on which a commanding panaromic picture is present is the situated the our lady of Mount Mary.  A series of steps leads to the chapel which is built of laterite stones and plastered with lime mortar.  It has three main altars dedicated respectively to our Lady of the Mount, St Anthony and St Andrew.  The Chapel was built under the orders of Afonso de Albuquerque in 1510.  It was re constructed twice and reinforced.  The church is in disuse and no prayers are conducted here.

The view point gives us the exact location of the Augustine tower that is how we landed at the right place.  The entire area with the river the river flowing and coconut gardens gives us a lovely and soothing view.  Though the landscape maybe a little hazy due to humidity it is still a soothing scenario to enjoy.
There are number of other Churches, Convent and Seminaries located in Old Goa, which we just whizzed past maybe liesurely we might be able to cover in our next visit.
a)  Church and Convent of St Monica : 
b)  Church of the Carmelities
c)  Convent and the Church of St John
d)  Royal Chapel of St Anthony
e)  Convent and Church of the Cross of Miracles
f )  The Pillory
g)  Church of St Cajetan


R Niranjan Das said...

Nice post on the lesser known churches of Goa.

Debbi Shah said...

I would definetly recommend this site to my Friends. And, you definetly saved the last snap of the tower for the best.

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Hotel Singh International said...

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Khushi R said...

Informative post of Goa. Its an ultimate place to have an eventful holiday filled with visit to beaches, flea markets, recreation activities and churchess. There are many Portuguese churches in Goa which are famous among visitors for its splendid architecture.


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