The present massive Church of Calangute is the third one built in the village. The first chapel was built of palm leaves (Olas), along the sea-shore, in actual Poriett, in 1576. It was filial to the church of Nagoa. The church was erected, with a cemetery, in 1595 by the Franciscans at the expense of the Ganvkars (village people) in the same place where there was previously the chapel, this is, in Poriett, where there is still a cross, vestige of the church-cemetery. (It is interesting to note that a procession was taken on holy Friday from the actual church to the cross of Poriett till around 1940, remembering the old church site. Today the feast of the holy cross is celebrated in the same place) it was only a simple structure covered with palm leaves. It was set on fire. Soon it was demolished for being too small.
The existing church was built in 1741 by the Communidades (village communities) with the help of donations. The towers were erected in 1765. There is a “cupola falsa” of Indian style. Its main sanctuary “capelamor” was rebuilt on July 16, 1916, and blessed on July 16, 1916. The church was entrusted to the diocesan clergy in the year 1767.
In the churchyard there is a Grotto of Our lady of Lourdes, it was the first grotto dedicated to the Our Lady in entire Goa.
Its pulpit in Rococo style was brought from the Church of Holy Rosary, today misnamed as the church of St. Francis of Assisi. It was described by Prof. Jose Pereira in Marq (Golden Goa) as follows: “Thus happens in the pulpit as Kongotti, a palpitation of volutes, can touches, encincture, canopy, pendants, flounces and tassels, all crested by the figure of the lamb of Apoclypse in the book of Seven Seals – a vision of white-and-gold climaxed by the symbol of an innocent victim god, or of the elegance of the Rococo going up in a flame of mystical flamboyance.
The church has two towers and a magnificent dome (Like that of St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome), with its seven altars, the three main being at the center and two sides, dedicated to our lady of the Mount, Our lady of Perpetual succor, the sacred heart of Jesus &d Mary and the Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception. The church is indeed unique.
Patron of Calangute Church: St. Alexius (extract from the book Saint Companions for each day) St. Alexius was the only son of a rich senator of Rome, Euphemian, and his wife Aglae, born and educated in that capital in the fifth century. From the charitable example of his parents, he learned that the riches which are given away to the poor remain with us forever and that alms-deeds are a treasure transferred to heaven, with the interest of an immense reward. while yet a child he was intent on the relief of all whom he saw in distress, and though himself obliged to those who received his charity and regarded them as his benefactors. Fearing lest the distraction of earthly honors might at length divide or drawn his heart too much from more noble objects, he decided to renounce the world.
On his wedding night, by gods special inspiration he secretly quit Rome, and journeying to Edessa, in the far east, gave away all that he had brought with him, content henceforth to live on alms at the gate of Our lady church in that city. Here he lived for seventeen years until and image of Our lady spoke and revealed his holiness to the people, calling him, “the man of God”, thereupon he fled back to his home, his father did not recognize him, but received him as a beggar and gave him employment, allotting a corner in his house.
For seventeen years he lived here unknown, bearing patiently the mockery and ill-usage of his own slaves, and witnessing daily inconsolable grief of his spouse and parents, at last, when death had ended this cruel martyrdom, they learned too late, from writing in his own hand, who it was that they had unknowingly sheltered. God bore testimony to this servant’s sanctity to many miracles, he died early in the fifth century and is buried in Edessa.
Feasts held at St. Alex church :
|22nd July||Feast of St. Alex – Patron|
|11th February||Feast of Our Lady of Lourdes|
|15th August||Feast of Our lady of Assumption|
|8th September||Feast of Our Lady of Mount|
|8th December||Feast of Our Lady of Immaculate Conception|
Chapels of Calangute:
|1||Chapel of St. Anthony of Lisbon (Meridional) Gaurawaddo|
|2||Chapel of St. Anthony (Setentrional) Gaurawaddo|
|3||Holy Family Chapel Gaurawaddo|
|4||Chapel of St. John the Baptist, Umtawaddo|
|5||Chapel of Our Lady of Piety, Khobrawaddo|
|6||Chapel of Our lady of Purification (Candelaria chapel) Sauntawaddo|
|7||Chapel of the Holy Cross, Porbawaddo (main market)|
|8||Our lady of Boa Viagem (Good Voyage), Dongorpur|
|9||Chapel of St. Anne, Baga|
|10||The small chapel of the Grotto of Our lady of Lourdes, church|
|11||Chapel of Radeemer (Redentor), Gaurawaddo|
|12||Holy cross chapel, Agarwaddo|
|13||St. Joseph Chapel, Tivaiwaddo|
|14||Bom Part Chapel, Maddowaddo|
|15||Chapel of Perpetual Help, Khobrawaddo|
|16||Chapel of Holy cross, Porbawaddo (small chapel)|