Thursday, 8 October 2015

Historical Basilica Holy Redeemer (1800s) of Trichy

Basilica of the Holy Redeemer, Tiruchirapalli. holyredeemersbasilica.org
.Basilica of the Holy Redeemer, Tiruchirapalli,www.indianetzone.com

When the   Jesuit missionaries moved over to Thiruchirapalli also called Trichy, Tamil Nadu, S. India to spread Christianity as far back as 1600s and 1700s,  there were a very small population of Christians living in this area. The  Jesuit  carried on their missionary work through Madurai mission that included Robert de Nobili and Constanzo Beschi. These Jesuits later became scholars
 
Mary-Gagayamatha.Basilica of the Holy Redeemer, .holyredeemersbasilica.org
 
of repute in Tamil, the native language spoken here. The conversion in Trichy took place in 1616. The Hindu  Nayak rulers of Madurai and also Thanjavur (Tanjore) gave ample support to the Jesuits. A small Christian community comprising around 7500 chose to offer their prayer at the St. Mary's Cathedral, Trichy, instead of  at Our Lady of Sorrows because the latter was under the administration of the Portuguese Padroado.

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Basilica of the Holy Redeemer, Tiruchirapalli. holyredeemersbasilica.org
The Basilica of the Holy Redeemer  located in Palakkarai Tiruchirapalli was the old one built by Cato on a huge land  donated by  the local Hindu ruler, Diwan Kanjamalai Medullar. This historical church's first building was built during the  British East India rule. The construction work began in 1846. As part of expansion work to meet the growing Christian community in this area,  Bishop Alexis Canoe, S.J  laid the foundation for a new church on 9 February, 1880 and the Basilica  was consecrated on 29 June 1881 by the Vicar Apostolic of Pondicherry, Msgr. François-Jean-Marie Laouënan, M.E.P. Believe it or not, it was then the largest church in the Indian sub continent.

Basilica of the Holy Redeemer, Tiruchirapalli. holyredeemersbasilica.org
The basilica has excellent and impressive paintings of incidents associated with the life of Christ.  In the year 1881 the 'Big Bell' was  added, a contribution  from British  Judge Woodroofe. It is the second biggest bell in Tamil. In this Church 'Sagayamatha' - Mother of Perpetual Help Basilica is venerated. The high roofed building has a  main, wide, slightly elevated aisle flaked by  sub-aisles. The aim of this kind of design was to allow good passage of light. The high roof design allows better aeration considering topical climate. Cato wanted a temporary church to receive British soldiers who were on the move. Trichy also happened to be a cantonment town. The church could accommodate 2000 people at a time. In the early 1900s with arrival the railways, Trichy was a seat of very large population of Angelo Indians and many of them were employees of SIR --South Indian Railways.

Pope Benedict XVI raised the church of the Most Holy Redeemer to the dignity of a minor basilica on 12 October, 2006 on a request for elevation of the church to a Basilica presented by  the Bishop of Trichy, Most Rev. Antony Devotee, while Rev. A. Gabriel was the parish priest.It is one among the  five Roman Catholic minor basilicas in the southern state of Tamil Nadu, India. Happy feast of John Maria

Vianney, St Xavier's feast and Christmas celebrations are held with devotion.and dedication here.
Ref:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Basilica_of_the_Holy_Redeemer,_Tiruchirappalli

http://holyredeemersbasilica.org/