Udupi, May 15, 2017: The just rebuilt Catholic church of Immaculate Conception Church, Gangolli, whose history dates to 16 century (about 387 years), is all set to be inaugurated and rededicated on May 18.
It is stated that Rev Dr Gerald Isaac Lobo Bishop of Udupi Diocese will bless and inaugurate the new Church. Later the Bishop will offer the first Eucharistic service in the new church assisted by Rev Dr Robert Miranda Bishop of Gulbarga, priests, nuns, and thousands of people - Christians as well as non-Christians. A felicitation and honouring function will be held after the Holy Mass.
The Immaculate Conception Church is one of the most loved, revered, spiritual and historical early churches of the recent Mangalore Diocese. It is situated 100kms away from Mangaluru city and is now a part of Diocese of Udupi.
The renovation project’s contract was given to a well-known expert and builder Ronald S A Castelino of Roy Constructions, Mangaluru.
According to parish priest Fr Albert Crasta parish the history of Church dates back to 1629. It is said Portuguese Commander, Dom Miguel Noronha conquered Gangolli and built a fortress dedicated it to St Michael and a church dedicated to the Immaculate Conception. But in 1630, the church was rededicated to Our Lady of Immaculate Conception. Fr George de Concessao and Fr Francis Cordeiro of the Franciscan Order used to offer mass here. In 1757 the Portuguese had to leave Gangolli and the church was destroyed. Chennammaji, the Queen of Keladi might have donated the place where the present church stands, to build a church. Blessed Joseph Vaz, the Vicar of the Canara district (1681-1685) lived here and constructed the chapel, as he is known to have done in coastal areas on his walk through. Fr Joachim Miranda (1759-1762), a Goan missionary known as ’Arkula Guru’ by the Hindus worked here before 1778.
Gangolli is a small peninsular village of Udupi district flanked by the Arabian Sea from the west and a river from the east. The place has been famous since the 16th century. It was a major trading port during the times of Tipu Sultan, Portuguese and also British rulers. Even today it has maintained its popularity and is one of the most famous fishing centers of Karnataka. In spite of the diversities present, Gangolli has been a symbol of unity in diversity and the people here, experience a feeling of oneness among them. A very close and co-operative bond between all sections of residents here is very special.