St Thomas Church – Aldona

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Aldona is a pleasant village situated in the Bardez taluka. It is well known for the St. Thomas church. The Church of St. Thomas remains an awe inspiring presence in the village of Aldona (estimated population 7000). It was built in 1596 on a high plateau on the banks of the Mapusa River. A flight of broad steps cut into a cliff and lead to an open plain that surrounds the grand white building.

Inside, the Church is ornately decorated by symbolic biblical murals and grand statues. The treasures of the church are the subject of a village legend. At one time, the statues of the church were strung with jewellery by villagers as thanks for prayers answered. But Churches were often robbed of these jewels.

The church commemorates the day of Dia Dos Ladroes in June. It is known that on 12th June 1741 some women in the farm spotted a gang of desperados in wee hours who were trying to attack the church. After alerting the villagers by tolling the church bell in order to avoid any delay these women took some agricultural implements and attacked them. Some of the gang got drowned while others ran for their life. However the Portuguese government was so proud of their bravery that a special event was hoisted.

St. Thomas the Apostle Church, Aldona, Goa is called ‘Sao Tome Igreja em Aldona, Goa’ in Portuguese. The St. Thomas the Apostle Church, Aldona, Goa is popularly called ‘The Aldona Church’ locally in Goa.

Aldona is the seventh parish established by the Franciscans in Bardez. The Franciscans started their ministry in Coimavaddo, where they built the original Aldona Church of the village, in the year 1569. Very soon, the need for a bigger and more centrally located church was felt and a second Church in Aldona was built in 1596, at the present location. As this was a mud structure, a new and strong edifice, which exists till date, was made ready before 1610. The parochial residence and the present sacristy to the Aldona Church were added by 1898 and the tower on the left side of the Aldona Church came up in 1927.

The Number of Catholics based in the parish of St. Thomas the Apostle Church, Aldona, Goa is 8,000+.

The Feast of St. Thomas the Apostle Church, Aldona, Goa is celebrated on the 3rd Sunday after Easter.

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