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Malayattoor is one of the most prominent Christian pilgrim centers in the Ernakulam district of Kerala, India. St. Thomas the Apostle is said to have established the church here, which has been designated by the Vatican as an International Shrine. The hilltop church is located 10km away from the town of Kalady, near Neeleeswaram.


St. Thomas founded churches in different places in Kerala including Kollam, Kodungalloor, Nilakkal, Niranam, etc. One can easily seek spiritual happiness and satisfaction amidst the calm and serene locales surrounding Malayatoor. In fact, this center is the most popular and largest St. Thomas shrine in India. It is a popular tourist center and many people throng this place to have a look at this magnificent church. It is a must visit while traveling to Cochin.
Every year on the first Sunday after Easter, thousands of pilgrims throng to this shrine to seek holy blessings. The architecture of the church is very interesting and uses a combination of unique styles that are a delight to the eyes. It is a combination of Greco-Roman architecture with a traditional Greek styled altar. The front of the church has been built in the typical Roman Catholic architecture. The church has been decorated with beautiful carvings, designs and paintings that depict the life of Jesus Christ. There are facilities for confession and adoration also in this church. The church also has an ancient pond that was used for baptism purposes and a traditional pulpit that is considered to be of much historical significance.

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Kerala Insights

Malayattoor Church: One of the famous pilgrim centres in Kerala, Malayattoor is located on the slopes of the picturesque Western Ghats, 52 kms from Kochi beside the Periyar River. 'Malayattoor' literally means the meeting place of land, mountain and river. It is the first pilgrim centre in India to be accorded international status by the Holy See, the official seat of the Vatican. It is also the largest pilgrim centre in the name of St. Thomas in India. Thousands of pilgrims of all castes and creed undertake the pilgrimage to St. Thomas church, located on top of the hillock Kurishumudi (hill of the holy cross) during the annual festival -Malayattoor Perunnal held in March/April, 8 days after Easter.

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