St. Thomas Cathedral, Pala

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St. Thomas Cathedral, Pala

St Thomas Cathedral[1] Or simply Cathedral of Pala is the name that receives a religious building that belongs to the Catholic Church, follows the Syro-Malabar rite and is located in the town of Pala[2][3] in the state of Kerala in the south of the Asian country of India. It serves as the mother church of the Syro-Malabar Diocese or Eparchy of Palai ( Eparchia Palaiensis) which was created in 1950 through the bull "Quo Ecclesiarum" of Pope Pius XII.

The church was founded in the year 1002 July 3, by four Syrian Christian families. These four Christian families of Palai were Tharayil, Koottumkal (brother of Tharayil Mappila), Erakonni and Vayalakombil. They engaged mainly in agriculture and trade. The traditional written history is that the Pala church founded by these families. Tharayil Thomman Mappila and Vayalakombil Thomman Mappila seek the permission to build a church at Pala. But the local ruler meenachil kartha's (karthavu) asked them to bring two more families. Erakonni family joined with them And still they Were in need of one more family. So Tharayil mappila brought his own brother's son from kaduthuruthy to Pala and their family name turned as Koottumkal family , in order to construct the church. Meenachil Karthas gave land on the banks of meenachil river and the church was constructed. These four families stayed in and around the church and opposite to the church.

Old Cathedral Church Pala

Pala Old church (വലിയ പള്ളി)[edit]

Pala old church ( വലിയ പള്ളി) built by srampickal Ittan mappilai

The Old church was rebuilt three times and the Present old church rebuilt in 1702 by Srampickal Ittan Mappilai who was a chief trader and agriculturist of the land and when a mukalappada from Tamil Nadu set fire to the church during the last decade of the 17th century. Since the land where the church was situated which was owned by Ittan Mappilai, he built the church with his own money and ran out of money when the church was completed, which also left him in debt. According to his last wish He died lying on the Veranda of the church on 30 November 1702, and was buried in the church cemetery.[4]

The new church of Cathedral as seen now was built under the leadership of Mar. Sebastian Vayalil, the first bishop of Palai.


  1. ^ "St. Thomas Cathedral, Pala, Kerala, India (Syro-Malabar)". Retrieved 19 November 2016.
  2. ^ Varghese, Theresa (1 January 2006). Stark World Kerala. Stark World Pub. ISBN 9788190250511.
  3. ^ Reily, Suzel Ana; Dueck, Jonathan (13 April 2016). The Oxford Handbook of Music and World Christianities. Oxford University Press. ISBN 9780199859993.
  4. ^ "ലത്തീന്‍ – സീറോ മലബാര്‍ റീത്ത് വിദ്വേഷം (ചാക്കോ കളരിക്കല്‍)". Malayalam Daily News (in Malayalam). 27 August 2014.