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St. Francis Xavier Church, Panaji

St. Francis Xavier Church Overview

Address: Old Goa City: Panaji State: Goa Location: South West India Year of Construction: 1884 AD Type of Construction: Medieval Type of Building: Church Religion: Christianity Church of St. Francis Xavier : Behind the gate of St. Paul's college is a Kuchcha road branching off the main road, leading to the chapel of St. Francis Xavier. It is built of laterite plastered with lime mortar, with tiled roof supported by wooden rafters is a plain chapel with only one altar. Architecturally, it is of the Doric order. The Chapel was within the enclosure of the College of St. Paul and was dedicated either to St. Anthony or to St. Jerome. As the chapel was used by St. Francis Xavier, it was re-dedicated to him after his canonization in 1622. The original chapel was in existence in 1545. With the outbreak of the epidemic and the consequent abandoning of the college of St. Paul in 1570, the chapel fell into ruins and the present chapel was built in 1884. The Feast of St. Francis Xavier commemorates the death of St. Francis Xavier, patron saint of Goa. Fondly called the Goincho Saib or the Lord of Goa, St. Xavier was a Spanish Jesuit missionary who preached Christianity in many parts of Asia. After achieving great success in Goa, St Xavier set sail for China but breathed his last at the Sancian Island, about 10-km from the mainland of China, on December 2, 1552. Legend has it that when the body of St. Xavier was transferred to Goa the following year, the body was found as fresh as the day it was buried. When news of this miracle reached the Vatican, the title of 'Saint' was conferred on Xavier. His mausoleum was erected in the Basilica of Bom Jesus church and the mortal remains were kept inside in a silver casket. Fairs & Festivals : The feast of saint Francis Xavier is held on 3rd December every year at Velha Goa or Old Goa which is about 10kms east of Panaji. The mummified body of St. Francis Xavier is enshrined in a silver casket in one of the chapels of Basilica of Born Jesus built in 1605 by the Jesuits. The body of the Saint is exposed to public once every ten years and pilgrims from all over the world came to pay homage.

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