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Last updated Tue, Jul 29, 2014 01:59 AM IST
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Festival at Manarcad cathedral
 Story Dated: Tuesday, July 29, 2014 1:59 hrs IST 
Manarcad St. Mary’s cathedral is located at a distance of nine kilometers from  Kottayam town. The church is famous for the annual practice of eight day fasting observed in honor of Virgin Mary. This ritual, referred to as ’Ettunombu Perunnal,’ is religiously observed at the cathedral between September 1st and 8th of every year.

During the days of the fasting, pious devotees from different parts of the world reach Manarcad to seek blessings of St. Mary. The devotees usually stay at the church from morning till night on these days. During the last three days of the festival, processions carrying golden crosses and decorated parasols, are held.

The ancient church has archeological prominence as well. As deciphered from the stone inscriptions at the church, its origin dates back to thousand years. Archeological studies in this regard has revealed that these inscriptions were actually memorial stones that were built in 910 A.D. and 920 A.D. The script inscribed on these stones relates to the language that was prevalent about 600 years ago. Later, the church has undergone many structural changes.

How to reach
The nearest railway station is Kottayam and airport is Nedumbassery.
 
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