Friday, February 06, 2009

The Santhome Cathedral Basilica Church in Chennai is a sacred place especially for the Catholic Christians.The cathedral at Santhome was built by the Portuguese between 14th and 15th century A.D. The cathedral has been built in a typical neo Gothic style. The shrines included in the cathedral is a small hand bone and the lance that was used to end the life of the apostle in this world. The 50 metres high building has been constantly renovated, following the ravages made by the time. An important fact regarding the cathedral is that, it is the second only church in the world that has been erected over the burial place of an apostle. The cathedral holds a 3 feet high statue of Virgin Mary, believed to be imported from Portugal in the year 1543 A.D. The reaching spire goes as high as 50 metres and the width of the nave is about 10 metres. The cathedral is provided with stained glass and 14 wood plaques that depict St. Thomas' encountered with the resurrected Christ. The cathedral, which was blessed in 1896 A.D. and raised to the dignity of a basilica by Pope Pius XII, in the year 1956 gathers pilgrims from far off places. The renovation works from last decade has restored the damages caused to the monument. The cathedral walls might have been weakened but the the glory is still there.

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