Saturday, 23 May 2020

Historical Anglican Christ Church, Kasauli, HP - a legacy of the early rule under the English Company!!

Christ Church Kasauli, HP, tripadvisor.
Christ Church Kasauli, HP. hellotravel.com
The  Christ Church in Kasauli (in Solan district) is an interesting place to visit. It was previously under the organisation of the Church of England when it was known as Anglican Church.  It was in the year 1970,the church management came  under the organisation of the CNI (Churches of North India)  and is presently managed by the diocese of Amritsar. The Cantonment  in Kasauli was established by the British  in 1842  by the East India Company and it is about  77 km from Shimla, 65 km from Chandigarh, and 94 km from Ambala Cantonment (Haryana).  Kasauli has had a deep connection with the Army ever since the town  came up here in 1842. An important cantonment during the British-Raj protecting the summer Capital of Shimla, the town has had a steady presence of Indian Army troops after independence too.   The church is located on the Mall, no body can miss the impressive church. The best time to visit this hill station is the summer time, however, one can also visit it during the winters for gorgeous snow scenery. The months of November-May may be a good bet. 
Christ Church Kasauli, HP, Flicker com
The following are the interesting features of this historical Anglican Church: 

01. The Christ Church in Kasauli hill station of Himachal Pradesh is the oldest church in that state.  

02. The British families  laid the foundation of the little town of Kasauli in 1842. Here, a Cantonment came up in the same year.  In the early stage, about 30 families, belonging to the Protestant sect of Christians, worshiped at the church. 

03. Established on 25th July, 1853  by Chaplain Thomas John Edward Steel,  a post-graduate from Cambridge University,  the church has an impressive  architecture  of the Gothic  of style, a common design across the Europe in those days. 
Christ Church Kasauli, HP, Flicker com
04. The amazing paintings on the wall, the  detailed carvings, etc add beauty to this already wonderful structure. 
05. The Christ Church that is is dedicated to St Francis and St Barnabas has an eye-catching feature in its front that includes an impressive  clock tower with a sundial in the front -  the sundial  which does work even today showing  the time accurately as one stands in front of it and sees the shadow of the sundial falling into the angles of the watch. 

06. Quite impressive are the life-like  statues of Jesus along with Joseph and Mary. They were done with meticulous care and dedication to details. The cruciform flooring is equally impressive. 

07. This old church has many stained glass windows to let enough  light in during days and they are  the major attraction here.  Specially imported from England  they are quite  visibly colorful and inspiring with shades of different colors on the Sunny day.  The depiction of  Christ, Mary, St. Barnabas and St. Francis in the stained glasses is breath-taking.  

08. The stained glasses over the altar  carry the image of  Christ and  the Crucifixion. Here,  Christ is flanked by Joseph and Mary. The church is shaped like  a cross  and it was done by British families  who lived here way back in 1840s  and the foundation of the church was laid in  1842

09. The church  graveyard is  an  historical one with many  tombstones dating  back to 1850s.  This suggests a large settlers from Europe lived in this quiet part of Kasauli. 
Clocktowe, Christ Church, Kasauli, HP> indianexpress.com
10. The nearly 155 year old clock of this  church i began to work in 2015. It was  in a state of disrepair for several decades with no efforts made to restore it.  Thanks to the  commitments and dedicated  efforts of the local Infantry Brigade of the Army and a good Samaritan from Chandigarh.


11. The old timers said that the clock on the imposing tower had worked for more than 50 to 60 years and used to  chime the hour. 
https://www.gosahin.com/places-to-visit/christ-church-kasauli/
https://www.tourmyindia.com/states/himachal/christ-church-kasauli.html
https://www.trekearth.com/gallery/Asia/India/North/Himachal_Pradesh/Kasauli/photo1296947.htm
lhttps://navrangindia.blogspot.com/2019/10/christ-church-kasauli-earliest-anglican.html
https://indianexpress.com/article/india/india-others/army-steps-in-to-restore-150-year-old-christ-church-clock-in-kasauli/