Attractions and Religious Sites Church, Darjeeling, Religious site, and Tourist Point
The St. Andrew’s Church located in the mall road, near Chowrasta is one of the most iconic landmarks in Darjeeling that is a memory of the bygone colonial era. It was named after the patron saint of Scotland and the foundation stone of this Church was laid on November 30th 1843. Later this church was badly damaged by an earthquake and was rebuilt in the year 1873. It is an old Anglican Church and some of the early worshippers of this church included many Scottish soldiers and tea planters living in the Darjeeling Hill area. Inside the church you will find many in lad marble tablets and brass plates which belonged to some of the oldest residents of Darjeeling. One among them is of General Llyod who is considered to be the Discoverer of Darjeeling.
This is an Anglican church which most used to cater to the Scottish residents of Darjeeling who came there from Scotland during the rule of the British. The Anglican Communion is an international association of Churches which consists of the Church of England and of national and regional Anglican churches in full communion with it. This basically means that there is full participation and mutual agreement on essential doctrines among these churches. The Anglican communion considers itself to be a part of the one holy Catholic and Apostolic Church. They also consider themselves to be both catholic and reformed. The church has a provision to seat about 150 members and holds regular mass services for the local Christians every Sunday. The mass timings are 9 am between March and November and 9:30 am from December to February. The holy communion is held on first and third Sunday or every month. The church also holds a Christmas Carol Service which is very popular and attended by many in the area.
The St. Andrew’s Church in Darjeeling holds great significance for the history of Darjeeling. It is one of the oldest buildings to have been constructed in Darjeeling when it was in the process of being ‘developed’ after the British acquired it from the Raja of Sikkim. The church is built in the Gothic Style of architecture which is one of the signature style of British Architecture. This type of architecture flourished during the late medieval period and is believed to have evolved from Romanesque architecture and was succeeded by Renaissance architecture. The origin of this architecture is believed to date back to 12th century AD. Some of its characteristics include the pointed arch, the ribbed vault and the flying buttress, most of which is found in the St. Andrew’s Church. It cost of Rs 9000 to construct the church during that time. The church has a spiritual, ethereal and quiet ambience which welcomes all the visitors with open arms and gives them a taste of the bygone British era.
The St. Andrew’s Church is not just any other place of worship in Darjeeling but it is a piece of history. It stands testimony to the grand transformation of Darjeeling form a forgotten densely forested habitat of few hundred people to one of the most beautiful and popular hill station of the world.
This historical church located near Bhanu Bhavan and on the Mall Road celebrates only one festival that is Christmas. Not much in a grand way, but the only one could make it out is by the illuminating lights and the star shape Christmas light that is hung on the top of the church.
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