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The First Ecclesiastical Structure Was Built By Hindus – By Rosario F. Rodrigues
Tuesday - Nov 29, 2022
The First Ecclesiastical Structure Was Built By Hindus – By Rosario F. Rodrigues
The Chapel of St. Catherine of Alexandria stands where once stood a Mosque. Immediately after the handing over the keys of the City of Goa to Afonso de Albuquerque by Bammon Mhalpe and Timoza, and as per the order of the Portuguese Commander to the soldiers without wasting time very first, this chapel was constructed by Hindus with mud walls and palm fronds with their own hands to gratify Portuguese Commander Afonso de Albuquerque and his military men for their prayer services.
 
Afonso de Albuquerque commemorated his victorious entry into the city of Goa against the Muslim forces of Adil Shah on November 25, 1510 as it was happened to be on the feast day of St. Catherine of Alexandria and dedicated the Chapel to the Saint. In 1534, Pope Paul III granted status of ‘Cathedral’ to this chapel and it was rebuilt then. It was commissioned by the Governor George Cabral to be enlarged in 1552 on the remains of an earlier structure. The construction of the present Cathedral church began in 1562, and was completed in 1619.
 
This chapel is the first ecclesiastical structure was built by Hindus of Goa with the immediate available building material of that time, and it is of historical significance. The then building of the chapel built by Hindus MARKED THE ADVENT OF CATHOLICISM, not only in Goa, but in Sri Lanka, Indonesia, and other places in the East.

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