Monday, December 29, 2008

St. Paul's Church, Melaka: Our Lady of Hill

Next destination is to climb up St. Paul Hills to reach St. Paul's Church. While on the way, you will pass by the Democratic Government Museum which seems not opening its doors to public.
As mentioned, it is a hill. Thus, you can view the Malacca town at a higher level above the sea. The red colour building is Aldy Hotel which is a 3 stars boutique hotel. There is a restaurant on the rooftop known as Rooftop D’Place where private parties and dinners can be organised. Besides that, there is also a Rooftop Jacuzzi which can accommodate 6-8 persons.
Nice and comfortable despite the hot sun Left top: Hidden cannon guarding at the entrance Left bottom: We believed this is the olden days structure of the stairs which still persists till today Right: Who is this man in the dark? It is a statue of St. Francis Xavier built in 1952. Wow what a windy day! Look at our blown hair.
History time:
The renowned Spanish born Jesuit missionary, St. Francis Xavier was a regular visitor to this church from 1545 to 1552. When he died, his body was interred for nine months before being exhumed and taken to his final resting place in Goa, India. So, this statue was built to commemorate his passing and interrment here. Do yo notice the right arm is missing? Accordingly, on the morning after the consecration ceremony, a large casuarina tree fell on it and broke off the right arm.
This is main entrance of the St. Paul's Church. The white tower is the lighthouse. The St. Paul's Church still remains strong till today
History time:
This church was originally a small chapel built by the Portuguese Captain called Duarto Coelho in 1521 A.D. and called 'Nosa Senhora - Our Lady of the Hill'. The chapel was handed to the 'Society of Jesus' in 1548 and enlarged in 1556 with the addition of a second storey and renamed 'Annunciation'. A tower was then added in 1590. When the Dutch take over from the Portuguese, the changed its name to St. Paul's Church and used it for 112 years until their own church, the Christ Church Melaka was completed in 1753.
When the British take over, the church lost its tower. However, a new feature was added at the front which is the lighthouse. The British did not use the church for worship but instead for storage of gunpowder. They also erected a flagpole and renamed the whole hill as Flagstaff Hill (Bukit Bendera). The name did not last long and the flagpole was later taken down. The church was then become abandoned. The old tombstones found inside marked the resting place of several Dutch and Portuguese nationals.
We spotted these cowboy men Vun on his first visit to Malacca Nicely directed pictures? Hehe.. The giant tombstone We do not understand the language written on the tombstone Photos time Looking to the view of Malacca town facing Mahkota Parade Nice view with the hidden cloud Next, we climbed down the stairs to the A Famosa Fort.
On the way, you will found this Dutch Graveyard. We did not enter as some say 'not good'.
History time: Upon completion of Christ Church Melaka, St. Paul's Church became a Dutch graveyard with monumental tombstones scattered around.


shaun said...

u know why the right arm broke off?? after the death of st Francis Xavier, the Vatican asked for proof of the saints' body being incorruptible... so they cut of his right hand to proof... but that was couldn't be used as proof as the hand could be anyone's hand ... well, the tree felt down and only his right arm broke... twice... another one is on another occasion...
enjoyed ur time in Malacca? my lovely state...lolz

KwOnG FeI said...

icic dats the real story behind..
well, i must say i truly enjoy to the fullest at Malacca..
and you should be proud to be born in melaka..

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