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Luz Church

Photos and description

One of the most visited places in the famous city of Chennai is a small but exquisite Catholic Church of Luz, which is officially called the Church of the virgin of Light, and is one of the oldest churches in the city. It was created in 1516, when this area was ruled by Portuguese colonists. They built it in honour of the virgin Mary in thanks for their prosperous voyage. According to legend, eight priests sailed from Lisbon to India on Board a Portuguese nobleman and Explorer Pedro Alvarez Cabral in 1500. They landed in Cochin (present Kochi) and intended to disperse across the country for the preaching of Christianity. Several priests decided to sail further South, but got lost. They're desperate to reach the earth, but did not cease to pray fervently to the virgin Mary and a miracle happened. They then talked to the banks helped them to reach the mysterious bright light that showed them the direction. People were convinced that it is Mary herself appeared to them and literally lit the path to the shore. Therefore, the new Church was named "Luz", which translated from Portuguese means "light".

The architecture of this building has mixed several styles: on the whole, it is built in European classical low-key manner, but it can be seen and the Gothic details, such as, arches, and ornaments of the Baroque. The main altar, where a statue of the virgin Mary, decorated with gilded and silvered leaves, and the ceiling of the hall is covered frescoes and murals, decorated in shades of blue.