St. Thomas Mount in ChennaiSt. Thomas Mount, the hillock near Guindy is a holy place of international prominence owing to the presence of a church on the hillock.St. Thomas Church has served as lighthouse for the Portuguese and Armenian ships and vessels in the Bay of Bengal. Sailors used to offer prayers for a safe voyage when the sighted the church.
Structure of St Thomas Mount in Chennai:Saint Thomas Mount is one of most famous churches of Chennai. Its architecture is so beautifully designed that people from all across the world come here to view this piece of art.
The act of climbing the 134 granite steps is considered an act of penance. In the year 1726 an ornate arch with an imposing elegance was constructed. The Portuguese were the architects of this place of worship. The granite steps flanked by a double wall were built by Petrus Uscan. Petres even left a sum of money with the Administrator General of Madras for the upkeep of these steps.
Miracle of Cure at Saint Thomas Mount:
Innumerable miracles of cure are
attributed to this sacred stone cross and mere contact with it has roused the conversion of many unbelievers. The natural dampness on its
surface is a perennial factor of surprise and devotion.
According to the sayings innumerable miracles of cure were attributed to the stone. The inscription on the cross was decoded in 1908. The first written account of the painting was made in 1559 when the King of Bisnaga took it to his court in Chandragiri and later returned it in a palanquin to the Mount.
A cross was chiseled on a stone of this hill
by St. Thomas
himself and used by him for his personal prayer. According to ancient records
this cross sweated blood during the holy mass celebrated by Fr. Gasper Coelho
on 18th December 1558. In the early years this cross used to sweat
blood every year.
Other Features of Saint Thomas Mount:
The oil printing of the Madonna of the blessed virgin was painted by St. Luke, an artist. The wear and the warp of this sacred species are explained by efforts of the people down the ages to bury and hide it in order to protect it from the onslaught of the invading enemies.
The shell patterned roof of the chapel is a tunnel of spiritual energy leading thousands of pilgrims in fervent prayer to the cave of their hearts. The minute precision with which the figures are molded is an example of architectural magnificence. The bishop celebrates the annual gathering of people for the Mass on the Palm Sunday evening at the culmination of their Lenten pilgrimage.
The stone inscription on the top
of the outer side wall reads in Portuguese that the frontal extension of the
original chapel and the massive main wooden doors were ordered to be done
by Zacharias in the year 1707.
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