A commemorative postage stamp on the 425th Anniversary of Basilica of Our Lady of Snows, Thoothukudi, a Catholic pilgrimage center in India dedicated to St. Mary, mother of Jesus :
Issued on Dec 25, 2007
Issued for : India Post is pleased to release a commemorative postage stamp on SNOWS BASILICA.
Stamp : Kamleshwar Singh
FDC & Cancellation : Alka Sharma
Type : Stamp, Mint Condition
Colour : Multi color
Denomination : 500 Paise
Stamps Printed : 0.4 Million
Printing Process : Wet–offset
Printer : Security Press, Hyderabad
- The SNOWS BASILICA is situated in Tuticorin. An ancient structure, it is a striking and significant landmark unfolding the tale of the social history of our country. It is a living symbol of India’s cultural contact with the world, especially the medieval Europe, and is a cornerstone of the multiculturalism of our country.
- The story started when Fr. Pedru Consalves build a church in Tuticorin is 1538 A.D. and dedicated it to St. Peter. Then through the efforts of the priests of Society of Jesus, a church dedicated to our Lady of Mercy was consecrated by the Rev. Monsignor Devoura, on 5th August, 1582 on the feast of Our Lady of Snows.
- The Church underwent changes and came in to present structure when especially Fr. Vigil Mange made efforts to beautify the structure. He faced difficulties from the Dutch. However, he managed to obtain permission from the Dutch Government at Ceylon. The newly constructed Church was consecrated and blessed on the feast of Our Lady of Snows on 5th August, 1713 A.D.
- The statue of Our Lady of Snows was initially kept in a Chapel in a convent of the Augustinian Sisters in Manila, Philippines. St. Francis Xavier wished that it should be sent to Tuticorin. The statue was received at this Church from Philippines on 9th June 1555 A.D.
- From 1857 onwards, the local devotees faced problems because of multiple control of the Dutch, the Portuguese and the French over the diocese and the parish. This matter was resolved in 1923. Accordingly, the Church of Our Lady of the Snows came under the Bishop of Thoothukudi in 1930.
- Pope John Paul–II raised this Church to the status of Basilica on 30th July 1982 on the occasion of its 400th Anniversary.
- Made in a beautiful Portuguese style architecture, the Basilica has, for centuries, drawn the devotees from far and wide. People of all faiths visit in large numbers throughout the year seeking peace, solace and happiness.
- Text : Based on material provided by the proponent.