Thiruvananthapuram, Nov 11: The Vatican has elevated the Palayam St Mary's pro-cathedral of the Syro-Malankara Catholic Church in the city to a basilica.
The annoucement in this regard was made by Papal representative Cardinal Leonardo Sandri, who is also the Prefect of the Congregation for Oriental Churches, at a function held in the Pattom St Mary's cathedral yesterday.
Major-Archbishop Baselios Mar Cleemis Catholicos, hierarchical head of the Syro-Malankara Catholic Church, presided.
Later, the Cardinal visited the shrine and unveiled a plaque raising it to a basilica.
This is the first basilica of the Syro-Malankara Catholic Church and the fourth basilica in Kerala.
It was in this place of worship, situated close to the Palayam Muslim Juma Masjid and a temple, the Syro-Malankara Catholic hierarchy was founded and the late Mar Ivanios consecrated as its first Archbishop in 1933.