by Fr. Devadatta Kamath SJ

History: The Church is also known as the Rosario Cathedral. It is one of the three – if not the – oldest churches in the Diocese, and Pietro delle velle, the Italian traveler who visited Mangalore in 1623 mentions it as the Church of the Holy Rosary at Bolar, the other two being Our Lady of Mercy of Ullal and of  St. Francis of Assisi at Farangipet. Fr. Joseph Vas in 1681 mentions the structure at Bolar serving as a church known at the time as the Factory Church. The church was built by the Portuguese when they landed at Mangalore in 1568. The Portuguese under Diego de Silveira won the battle at Mangalore on January 5, 1568, occupied the town and built the factories and godowns for storage of spices. They built the fort of St. Sebastian as also the church. The Cathedral now stands where the Portuguese church had stood once. The Royal stone emblem of the Portuguese King marking their landing in Mangalore lies at the entrance of the Cathedral. Blessed Joseph Vaz played an important role in the history of this church in 1681.

Rosario Church was desecrated and destroyed by Tipu Sulthan’s forces in 1784. After the faithful returned from their captivity they worked to rebuild the church. The work started in 1813. The English government gave a grant of Rs. 4,000 to rebuild both the churches – here and St. Milagres. On April 16, 1850 the church was raised to the rank of a cathedral by Bishop Ephrem ODC (See Vol I P) Fr. Urban Stein SJ, German, was the first parish priest on the arrival of the Jesuits (1879-1888). The first Episcopal Ordination witnessed in the old church was of Mgr. Nicolas Marie Pagani on October 25, 1885.
It was in 1910 that Fr. Henry I. Buzzoni SJ, Parish priest, demolished the entire structure of the old Cathedral and commenced work on the present day spacious and magnificent edifice worthy of its status as a cathedral. Br. Divo SJ was the architect. This would be the only church in the Diocese with a majestic dome covering the entire sanctuary. In those years the Cross on the dome was lit every night serving as a beacon to the seafarers. Bishop Perini, the third and last Jesuits bishop, too was ordained in the Church on December 4, 1910. The main altar was consecrated by him on April 3, 1924 when he was the Administrator Apostolic. Fr. Buzzoni also erected a belfry tower and installed four bells, imported from Italy.

The original parish has given rise to several parishes in the course of time perhaps Urva is the first, carved out in 1865, Kulur 1888, Bejai 1912, Bendur 1914, Cascia 1935, Derebail 1939 and Thannirbavi 1950.

The schools in the Parish have a history too. Already in 1858 Christian (Della Salle) Brothers started St. Mary’s School, later known as Rosario School, now Management college. The sisters of St. Joseph of Apparition opened a school for girls in 1859 at St. Ann’s grounds. When the Congregation shifted to Cannanore, the Carmelite Tertiaries (later A.C.‘s) took over the School, presently the A.C. ‘s run the colleges of Education as well as Schools for Girls.

Mention must be made of the Minor Seminary Gladsom Home for students preparing themselves to join the seminary mostly for the Diocese of Mangalore.

Year wise History

I century We can trace back the history of christen in India to 1 century AD when St Thomas arrive in India, Rome of the East nicknamed
1526 Franciscan established mission
1568 Portuguese Diego Silveria attached Mangalore, Fort of St Sebastiao, Factory church, Royal stone emblem of Portuguese king insignia of their landing
1570 Jesuit missionaries
1609 Pope Paul V

Italian Pietro Della Valle mentions 3 churches

1681 Fr Joseph Vaz repaired
1568 Oldest church Portuguese
1910 ne church roman architecture, Bishops house 1.5 Km, Old port area
1784 Lent ash Wednesday February 21 9 26-27 churches destroyed)
1813 Rebuild church – British government contributed Rs 4,000
1850 April 16 Church was raised to rank of cathedral
1870 November 5 Bishop Marie Ephrem OCD, vicar apostolic of Mangalore
1873 April 10 Bishop Marie Ephrem died buried
1885 October 25 Nicolas Maria Pagani SJ
1895 April 30 Died
1895 Decemebr 2 Msgr Abundius Cavadini SJ
1910 March 26 Msgr Paul Perini SJ
1923 January 12 Transferred to secular clergy
1910 Fr H. I Busonni SJ demolished old structure
Br Divo SJ architect
1910 December 4 Consecrated Bishop Perini
Only sanctuary existed
Fr Busoni Belfry – 4 Italian bells
1924 April 3 main altar consecrated by Bishop Perini
Only church with magnificent doom crowing the spacious sanctuary
Cross on dome was lit at night served as a beacon to sea farers
Royal stone emblem of port king mark landing in Mangalore
When no electrical system people could listen clearly
Podium pulpit fixed on a pillar good Friday

Rosario school first catholic school in Mangalore
Portico classes balcony school distinguished old student


Christian Brother primary
Role in destiny of 1000studetns


St Mary’s school


High school


I batch of SSLC




97% result 34/35


Gymnasium computer center
Mens Sana in corpore sano

1845-1888 Fr urban Stine SJ German
1888 Founder of cathedral
1999 Cultural hall
2007 New presbyter
2008 I grade college

Home | Parish | Sitemap | Contact

Copyright © 2013 All rights reserved. Powered by eCreators