Monday, June 16, 2008

Cristo Rei at Assolna

Assolna village in Salcete, South Goa is famed for its magnificent monument to Christ de King or 'Cristo Rei'. Many church compounds in Goa have a Cristo Rei statue alongwith a grotto of Our Lady. But the one in Assolna is large and awesome in its detail. Marble statues of the four apostles of the Bible: John, Luke, Mark and Mathew stand at four corners.

Cherubs, coats of arms, a central Holy Spirit motif and beautifully carved urns at ascending levels finally take us to Christ triumphantly flanked by horn blowing angels.

The Assolna cemetery also has an elaborate Rococo facade, with a large decorative motif in high relief at the center. A parish priest and some parishioners felt the cemetery looked better than the church. So when the fad of putting up a backlit sign bang in the center of the church front hit the Assolna church, the picture put up on the sign was not of the church but of the cemetery!

After some years it was replaced by a picture of the church itself. Priests or parishioners may feel that their church looks plain, but that architectural design may belong to a particular era and style many centuries back. It is a sacrilege of heritage to tamper with this original design by adding incongruous details.

Our Lady, Queen of Martyrs - ASSOLNA, Salcete.
Built in 1616 on the ruins of a fortress on the River Sal bank. The fortress was infamous for the massacre of several village chieftains in retribution for the killing of a group of priests in Cuncolim.



Anonymous said...

Cristo Rei at Assolna was designed by Mr. Alec Correa, brother of the famous musician Mr. Micky Correa.

menopausal_ballerina said...


Is that a fact?

Micky Correa was my grandfather and i'd never heard of that before.