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Report - Elevation of St. Thomas Forane Church, Thoothoor

This report brings the complete step by step elevation process of St.Thomas Forane Church Thoothoor. This 400 year church underwent renovation in 2008-2010 time period.

Elevation of St. Thomas Forane Church, Thoothoor

24th June 2010:
The newly built St.Thomas Froane church is inaugurated today (24th June 2010) in the rich Eucharistic celebration. His Grace, Most Rev. Dr. Soosa Pakiam M, the metropolitan Archbishop of Trivandrum has presided over the ceremonies. Very Rev. Msgr. John D Bosco, many priests and sisters from Thoothoor forane parishes and from other places have also joined for this very special Eucharistic celebration. Sathyabhama University chancellor Dr. Jeppiaar attended the ceremonies as chief guest. Big mass of people and well wishers were present to witness this great celebration. The ceremonies that started at 4pm has ended at 8.30 pm, and people shared their happiness with each other at the end of the inauguration ceremonies.

The Inauguration Photos:
The Inauguration Video (from Frederic):


3rd Week June 2010:
The church is completely ready for the inauguration. Below are couple of latest photos taken around the church.

Church Top View:
Full View:
The Old Post Office area being demolished:


June 2010:
The church construction is over. The final decorations and touch up works are going in full pace to have the inaugural celebrations on 24th June 2010 at 4pm. His Grace, Most Rev. Dr. Soosa Pakiam M, the metropolitan Archbishop of Trivandrum will preside over the ceremonies. The parishioners are getting ready to have this ceremony in a greatest way.

Altar View & Church inside:
Side View:
Side View from Front side:
Front View


May 2010:
The church construction work (interior work) and the altar glass works will be completed by June 1st week. After that, the decoration and lighting works will happen for the next two weeks. When asked, Fr Andrews (assistant parish priest) mentioned that the inauguration is on 24th June on the day of St.Thomas feast flag hoisting. Trivandrum arch bishop Most Rev.Dr.Soosa Pakiam will offer the holy inaugural mass in the presence of many religious heads. Dr. Jeppiaar will also felicitate the inauguration function. Thus the St. Thomas feast this year will be offered in the new church.

Full View of the Church:
Front & Top view:
Altar View:
Inside & Balcony View
Side View
The open stage besides the church


April 2010:
The altar, marble flooring, painting and other interior works are progressing in fast mode. Talking to Thoothoor.com, Fr. Joseph Prasad mentioned that the church will be inaugurated on 24th June in a grant manner with many bishops and guests. Check the below pictures for the construction status.


Feb 2010:
The church construction works (builder work) are nearing a closure. The alter, marble flooring, painting and other interior works are heading for a kick off soon. White wash is currently going on:


Dec 2009:
The Church building skeleton work is almost completed. The remaining work is expected to happen in a speedy manner as the parish is trying to get the new church ready by June 24th 2009:


Oct 2009:
The concrete work for the roof is completed. All the other works are going in a fast mode to get the Church ready before St.Thomas feast. Below is another front view picture released recently by Fr. Joseph Prasad:


Sept 2009:
The concrete work for the roof is undergoing currently. This is a challenging construction work. Below picture shows the current construction status:


July 2009:
Since there were many changes in the plan, the original elevation design proposal also changed. The builder has released the new elevation designs based on the later plan changes. The new design photos below:

NEW CEMETERY: In conjunction with the church renovation work, the cemetery is getting shifted to a new location to utilize this space for church and public use. An area of 50 cents has been acquired for new cemetery at the east side in Thoothoor. The proposed cemetery plan below:


June 2009:
Now the church is being rebuilt. The progress is happening slowly. People wish to have the church ready before the next St.Thomas feast day. The below photo shows the view:


Dec 2008:
There are further changes to the plan. As per the new plan, the entire building is demolished except the front arch. The plan is to retain the front arch, as people wanted to have it this way in order to secure traditional values. The below photo shows the view:


Oct 2008:
The is a little change in the initial plan, and due to that half of the old church building is demolished. The cost estimate also increases due to that. The below photos give the views of current status:


July 2008:
As decided, the elevation work is now started. The plan is to demolish one side of the church (the alter side) and complete the work. The parish priest of Thoothoor, Fr. Joseph Prasad, told to Thoothoor.com over phone that:
 
  • The committee is targeting to complete this work and have the new church ready by 24th of June 2009, which is the flag hoisting day of St.Thomas feast.
  • The Eucharist box has been shifted to Christ the King Shrine.
  • All church services will be offered from Christ the King Shrine till the completion of this work, for that a temporary shed will be constructed in the Christ the King Shrine.
  • The approximate cost estimation is 1 crore.
  • Increased levy is imposed on parishioners to raise fund for this elevation work. This will be collected in the monthly basis for the next 10 months. The parish priest and the development committee are expecting people's whole hearted support for this.

    The proposed elevation designs are below:


    June 2008:
    The parish priest, the Committee, and Thoothoor Development Committee (a special committee formed for all development activities) together have decided to reconstruct the church to bring more prayerful atmosphere in and around the church.

    When we tried to understand people's view, all have agreed to the fact that a better church is required. People in Thoothoor are very happy about this work, as it is one of their dream having a good church building. There is also some dissatisfaction among people that this is not the right time as the parish is running on debit. But respecting the overall trend, now people have come on the same line to support this elevation venture. Everyone's expectation is that their hard earned money should be managed properly in this activity by not allowing any corruption or any other unfair activities. Hope the parish priest and the development committee would ensure this by enforcing a fair system to manage this venture, especially the money.

    The front view of the old church:

    Another photo of the old church (taken on Dec 2007):

     

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