St.Thomas Syro Malabar Catholic Church
Considered to be the “oldest Catholic shrine in India” is a church in Kerala known as the St Thomas Syro Malabar Catholic Church. Constructed in the year 52 AD this “Apostolic Church” is located in a small town called Palayoor in the Thrissur district. This church was established by the “St Thomas” one of the twelve apostles of Jesus Christ In general the structure of this beautiful church has been retained, although a few renovations were carried during the 17th century by Reverend Fenichi without eve altering its essence. Furthermore, it is also more commonly referred to as St Thomas Church.
Read more: 10 WORTH VISITING INDIAN CHURCHES
a. Best time to visit St Thomas Church
The best time to visit this temple is during the winter season which begins in December and ends in February when the climate is “mild and pleasant” with the temperature ranging from a maximum of 30 degree Celsius and a minimum of 22 degree Celsius.
b. How to reach St. Thomas Church
St.Thomas Syro Malabar Catholic Church Map
1. By train:
The nearest railway station is located in Thrissur. The Thrissur Railway Station is well connected to major cities in the country.
2. By road:
If you intend to drive to this church then the ideal starting points would be Guruvayur, Thrissur, Ernakulum, and Kochi.
- Via Guruvayur:
There are two routes from Guruvayur to this church, and they are via Mutthuvattoor-Guruvayur Road and Palayur Road, and via EdappullyGandhinagar Road.
- Via Thrissur:
There are three routes from Thrissur to this church, and they are via Poovathur Arnala Nagar Road, via Thrissur, and via Kanjani Road/Thrissur Kanjani/Vedanappally Road-Chavakkad Kanjani Road/ Chavakkad Kangany Peringottukara Road/Chavakkad Mullessery Kanjany Road.
- Via Ernakulam:
There are two routes from Ernakulam to this church, and they are via NH66 and via NH544.
- Via Kochi:
There are two routes from Kochi to this church, and they are via NH66 and via NH544.
3. By air:
The closest airport to this temple is located in Cochin. The Cochin Airport is well connected to cities such as New Delhi, Mumbai, Calicut, Goa, Mangalore etc.
c. Religious significance of the St. Thomas Church
This church was established by one of the twelve apostles of Jesus Christ St Thomas. According to a legend St Thomas passed via places in Kerala such as Kodungallur in the Thrissur district and eventually landed at a small town called Palayoor. During the time St Thomas arrived, this small town most comprised of a mix of mainly the Brahmin and the Jew community. It was then that St Thomas began converting Brahmins and Jews to Christianity. Hence it was in honour of St Thomas that this church was eventually constructed in this small town in the Thrissur district.