Known for the famous Ettu Noyambu as a matter of fact is my congregation. The church’s history is very old and the story behind the construction of the church and the matters that led it to be famous would give each one of you goosebumps.
The desire of ancient fathers for a holy place to take prayers and religious ceremonies for the Pilgrim Christians were the root causes of construction of the church. They started praying for this purpose. On the 8th day of their prayer they had a vision. (Holy fathers compared Virgin Mary with The ‘Sakshipettakam’ which was created by Mossaih according to the order of God. The circumference of this ‘Sakhshipettakam’ was 8 muzhams (around 12 feet). The number connected with the salvation secrets of Virgin Mary and her son Jesus Christ was also considered to be 8). The vision was to built the church in the forest where a calf and cow were lying down, where the fish and deer could be caught and Acacia Instia and canes were scattered around. (Acasia Redhirama, the wood which used to fabricate the ‘Sakshipettakam’ and Acasia Instra which was the Holy Fathers dreamt of were of the same species.) The stone inscriptions found at the church reveal that the church was built more than a 1000 years ago. Archeologists have found out that these stone inscriptions were memorial stones set up at the tombs in 910 A.D. and 920 A.D. and the writing on them are in Malayalam and Tamil scripts prevalent 600 years ago. Afterwards, on several occasions, the church was rebuilt and renewed. In the 16th century there was not a single church in the land which was not re-built in the Portuguese style.
The legend behind the erection of the stone cross is as follows: For the installation of the huge cross made up of stone, the devotees requested the assistance of an elephant to its owner who was staying in Puthupally, which is 6 kms away. Since the elephant was under rest / treatment, the owner refused the request. The devotees returned in desperation. But to their surprise they saw the stone cross was erected and installed properly and the above said elephant was standing beneath the cross.
Traditional lamps were lighted around this cross by the devotees is a peculiarity of the church. The devotees used to move around the cross on their knees after the bath in the pond. Psychic patients as well as the patients having chronic diseases used to pray beneath the cross and they get well, is a common phenomena.
People say if you happen to pray in front of the cross with faith. All prayers would turn into reality.