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GoaCentral > Sightseeing > Churches of Goa > Churches around Margao

Churches around Margao

Church of Holy spirit, Margao

This church lies at the site of the original Shree Damodar temple that was destroyed by the Portuguese and the deity was moved to Zambaulim. The church was built here in 1565 and soon after was destroyed and the present building was constructed in 1675. Today it stand as one of the finest examples of the Indian Baroque style and period of church building. The outer facade consists of towers on either side with a central dome structure. The church has a beautiful interior replete with a pipe organ. The heavily decorated altars inside are dedicated to St. Peter and St. Michael.

Rachol Seminary

This is a working seminary and is situated at Rachol, about 12  Kms  from   Margao on the banks of the Zuari river. A temple stood on the original site as evidenced by the artifacts excavated in the area. This is a working seminary today. It was originally built as a church by the Portuguese in 1521, it was later a fortress and prison and the seminary was established by an order of King Sebastian of Portugal in 1606 to train Goan  Jesuit priests to propagate Christianity. It subsequently became a great center of learning and one of its most famous alumni is the English Jesuit priest Fr. Thomas Stevens who is credited to have translated the bible to Konkani, "Christa Purana" and  who also wrote the first konkani  grammar  text. Another famous alumni  was Father Ribeirio , who created the first Konkani -Portuguese dictionary in 1626. It was also the site of the third printing press in the Portuguese eastern empire. It became a diocesan seminary in 1726. It survived the ban of religious orders in 1833 through the manipulations of its then rector, Monsignor Rebello. Another famous alumni is the reverend Father Agnelo De Souza , who for a while was its director .  The seminary church is dedicated to St. Ignatius of Loyola, the patron saint of the Society of Jesus, the order of Jesuits. Today it houses the "museum of Christian Art" which chronicles the evolution of Christian /catholic art in Goa with interesting artifacts of the bygone era.

The Rachol parish church, which lies outside the fort is dedicated to Nossa Senhora de Neves, Our Lady of Snows. Buried in the church is one of the notorious "Temple destroyers", Diogo Rodríguez. Resting on the steps to the church is a memorial slab marking the original burial site of the "Martyrs of Cuncolim", who were put to death in 1583. Their relics were subsequently moved to the College of St. Paul  in Old Goa and again to a final resting place at the altar  of St Anne in the Cathedral.

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