The basilica Our Lady of Health, Velankanni - colorful annual festival

Our Lady of Health Basilica at

Basilica Our Lady of Velankanni ,Tamil Nadu.The Indian Economist
The basilica Our Lady of Health located in Velankanni – a small town in Nagapattinam district in Tamil Nadu is one of the famous places of worship in India by the Christians. It is a historical church fdeveloped by the Portuguese centuries ago. The 11 day annual festival is a great event at this church that will attract more than 800,000 people of all faiths from different parts of India, in particular, from Maharashtra, Odisha and other states. On certain days, the number of people will go up to 300,000. This year this famous and Joyous festival starts on August 29 with the hoisting of the church flag and would end on September 8.
Velankanni church festival, 2014. The Hindu

 According to the church officials , special mass will be held in Tamil, English, Telugu, Kannada, Malayalam, Marathi and Konkani. As part of the festival, on the flag-hoisting day, an illuminated chariot (ther or rath) carrying Velankanni Matha or Arokiya Matha will be pulled by the  church organisers. The devotees will pull the car towards sea shore road and Ariya Nattu Street.

In order to hand the sea of humanity converging on this small town, the state police have made security arrangements.  The state-owned transport corporation and Indian Railways have announced special services to handle the additional passenger load to Velankanni from different places.

 The church attributed many apparitions. Every year people in million visit this place of veneration. Roughly 550 years ago Our Lady appeared with the infant Jesus in her arms before a poor and innocent boy andd also appeared before  a cripple boy and cured him. Our Lady of Health was also instrumental in saving the Portuguese sailors who were caught in a severe Storm in the Bay of Bengal off the coast of Velankanni.