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St Michael and all Angels Church
St Michael and all Angels Church
Nickname(s): First Village, City of Refuge
Mudalur is located in Tamil Nadu
Mudalur is located in India
Location in Tamil Nadu, India
Coordinates: 8°24′41″N 77°57′56″E / 8.41139°N 77.96556°E / 8.41139; 77.96556Coordinates: 8°24′41″N 77°57′56″E / 8.41139°N 77.96556°E / 8.41139; 77.96556
Country  India
State Tamil Nadu
District Thoothukudi
Founded by David Sundaranthan
Named for First Christian settlement
 • Member of Parliament J. Jeyasingh Thiyagaraj Natterjee
 • Member of Legislative Assembly S.P Shanmuganathan
 • Panchayat president Meena Murugesan
Elevation 19 m (62 ft)
Population (2010)
 • Total 4,658
 • Official Tamil
Time zone IST (UTC+5:30)
PIN 628702
Telephone code 91 (0) 4639
Vehicle registration TN-69[1]
Coastline 40 kilometres (25 mi)
Lok Sabha constituency Thoothukudi
Legislative Assembly constituency Srivaikuntam

Mudalur is a village in Thoothukudi District, India. It is the first purely Christian settlement formed by missionaries in South India with 28 Christians.[2][3] Today it has a population of more than 4500 people.


Mudalur formation[edit]

Mudular, meaning "first village (முதல்+ஊர்)", was founded in 1799 by a group of recent converts from Palayamkottai on the initiative of the village's first settler, David Sundaranandan,[4] who sought to create a purely Christian settlement modeled on Biblical line "City of Refuge". With the tireless effort of David Sundaranandan and the liberal donation of capt. Everet a rectangular land was purchased in the name of Rev. Jeanaicke in August, 1799.[5] The converted Christians in Mudalur were continuously attacked by non-Christians. To prevent the people, David Sundaranandan joined with the young people of Mudalur learnt "Silambam" and the silambam team was named as "Thadikambu Sena". So, David Sundarandan is known as "Thadikambu David Sundarandan" and "Lion of Mudalur".[4] David Sundaranandan is the first martyr and first seed of Tirunelveli Church.[4]

Mudalur has five straight streets with excellent drainage system. The east-west five streets and the north-south cross streets resemble the village formation in England.

St.Michael and All Angels Church formation[edit]

The first church in the village was built in 1799, out of palm, but was burnt by non-Christians. Four years later, Rev. Sathyanathan built the second church. Third church was built in 1816 with brick and mortar.[6] After David Sundaranandan, Rev. H.B. Norman rendered an excellent service to Mudalur. Since he was an excellent architect, he built a big church in western pattern within two years.[2][7] It has a capacious to hold more than 2000 people. The church was dedicated by Bishop Sargent on St. Andrew’s day 30 November 1883.[8][9] The length of the church is 152 feet and breadth is 63feet. Altar is splendid beauty and is four feet height from the floor with dedicated place for choir.

The church constructed by Rev. H.B. Norman was flat with low stories. So, people of mudalur built 193 feet height tower with seven floors. At the top of the tower a Crown stone with a gold cross was placed. The new church tower was dedicated on 29 September 1929 (St. Michael's Day).[6]

Mudalur church has some unique architectural designs. According to Biblical numerology, number seven implies "totality of perfection" or "completeness". The church tower has seven floors. The inner church has exactly seven pillars with seven arches in each side. The Altar has exactly seven steps. Seven Candlesticks in each side of the Altar Cross, Seven pendant lamps and a glass Heptagon (seven sided polygon) decorate the Altar.

Social Development[edit]

Since from its foundation, Mudalur has acquired a well-developed infrastructure. Education was available from 1803, a postal service started in 1891, public transport in 1940, primary health care in 1965 and the first bank (Canara Bank) in 1970. Telecommunication service was started in 1990. The Mudalur panchayat was constituted in 1955.[10]


Parliamentary constituency[edit]

Mudalur was a part of Thiruchendur Lok Sabha constituency till 2009. Since Thoothukudi was separated from Tirunelveli Lok Sabha constituency Mudalur became the part of Thoothukudi Lok Sabha constituency from 2009. Mr. J.Jeyasingh Thiyagaraj Natterjee is serving as a Member of Parliament in this constituency.

Assembly constituency[edit]

Mudalur was a part of Sathankulam Assembly constituency till 2009. Now it is the part of Srivaikuntam Assembly constituency. Mr. S.P Shanmuganathan is serving as a Member of Legislative Assembly in this constituency.


Mudalur panchayat was constituted in 1955.[10] It is located in Sathankulam Taluk. 18 villages are under Mudalur panchayat. Now, Tmt Meena Murugesan is serving as Panchayat president.


The climate of Mudalur is generally hot and humid. But it will receive heavy rain fall during the monsoon seasons from October to January. This is the time of year where heavy rains can be expected due to the Tropical depression along the Indian Ocean coastlines.


Mudalur has an extensive transport network. It is well-connected to other major villages and towns by road.



Mudalur St.Michael's choir is one of the best male child voice choirs in South Tamil Nadu. Rev H.B Norman formed a choir in 1883 and made wooden furniture with special carvings for the choir members in church. The Reed Organ which was used in the church was bought in Mumbai. Currently, Viscount Vivace 60 Digital Organ (Made in Italy) is being used during church services.


Mudalur has the pride of giving importance to the arts of entertainment and moral life like "Silambaattam", "Kaliyalattam". Silambam art was taught to many youth along with Sundaranantham (1799). Kaliyalattam is an endangered Tamil cultural dance. Mudalur Youths perform Kaliyal during all important events and mainly on New Year. There are many songs written by Annavi’s (Kaliyal poet) which explains the life and culture of Mudalur. The famous songs are "Church song" which explains the architecture of church and "Ooruni song" which explains the flow of water from the river to the pond (Ooruni) in Mudalur.


"Koil Prathistai" is the biggest festival which is celebrated on St. Michael's Day (29 September) every year. "அசனம்" called "Annadhanam" feast, sharing (தானம்) of food (அன்னம்) is another biggest festival which occurs every year on (30 September) or the next day if 29 or 30 September is Sunday. The other religious festivals like Christmas, Easter, Deepavali also celebrated grandly in Mudalur.


Volleyball, Kabaddi and Cricket are the popular games in Mudalur. Mudalur has produced talented Volleyball players who represented Tamil Nadu State Volleyball Team, Indian Volleyball Team and many notable Volleyball clubs like Tamil Nadu Police, Indian Overseas Bank, Indian Coach Factory etc.


Though Mudalur has a majority population following Christianity, it has other religious heritage and has places of worship for the major Indian religion - Hinduism.


Totally 5 schools are there in and around Mudalur.

Nursery schools[edit]

  • Two nursery schools run by reputed group of people.

Primary schools[edit]

  • TDTA St. Michaels Primary School (Boys), Mudalur.[11]
  • TDTA St. Michaels Primary School (Girls), Mudalur.[11]

Higher Secondary schools[edit]

  • TDTA St. Michaels Higher Secondary School, Mudalur.[12]


The main profession of Mudalur people are listed below:

  • Agriculture and Cattle farming
  • Retail trade shops in several parts of Tamil Nadu
  • Palm jaggery production & trade
  • Teaching

Muscoth Halwa Production[edit]

Mudalur muscoth halwa is famous in all over the world. The Indian government award winning halwa shops AJJ Sweets[13] and SJ Sweets[14] are in Mudalur


Tamil language


Adayal Church

Mudalur has the major sub village called Adayal (அடையல்) under its panchayat.[15]


  1. ^ Tamilnadu State Transport Authority Registration Series PDF
  2. ^ a b "Tirunelveli Diocese of Church of South India". Retrieved 2011-12-29. 
  3. ^ L. Emmanuel, Lankadieu (2001). The Pearl of Greatest Price. Leo Books. p. 157. 
  4. ^ a b c O'Connor, Daniel (2000). Three centuries of mission: the United Society for the Propagation of the Gospel 1701-2000. British Library Cataloguing-in-Publication Data. p. 277. ISBN 0-8264-4989-1. 
  5. ^ Caldwell, Robert (1881). A political and general history of the district of Tinnevelly, in the Presidency of Madras, from the earliest period to its cession to the English government in A.D. 1801. Presidency of Madras, Printed by E. Keys. p. 247. ISBN 81-206-0161-0. 
  6. ^ a b "Tirunelveli Diocese". 
  7. ^ "The Unofficial Guide to Mudalur on the Web". Retrieved 2011-12-29. 
  8. ^ The Official Year-book of the Church of England. Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge, London. 1886. p. 196. 
  9. ^ Charles Frederick Pascoe (1901). Two hundred years of the S. P. G. London, Pub. at the Society's Office. p. 542. 
  10. ^ a b Mudalur Thesis PDF
  11. ^ a b TDTA St. Michael's Primary School (Map). WikiMapia. 
  12. ^ "TDTA St Michaels HSS Facebook page". Facebook. December 18, 2011. Retrieved 2011-12-20. 
  13. ^ "AJJ Sweets". Retrieved 2014-06-06. 
  14. ^ "SJ Sweets". Retrieved 2014-06-06. 
  15. ^ அடையல், முதலூர் map (Map). WikiMapia. 

External links[edit]