Saturday, June 5, 2010

Kohima Cathedral

The Kohima Cathedral:

The Kohima Catholic Cathedral is an architectural wonder as well as a major tourist attraction in Nagaland. The term ‘cathedra’ in Latin means chair and therefore cathedral is the church where the Bishop of a Diocese resides. The cathedral is situated on one of the highest hills of Kohima and offers a beautiful panoramic view of the state capital.

The cathedral at Kohima in Nagaland.

A beautiful view of the Kohima town from the Cathedral.

A brainchild of Lt. Rt. Rev. Abraham Alangimattathil

Initially, in the year 1973, The Diocese of ‘Kohima & Imphal’ was erected as one Diocese from two states, Nagaland and Manipur. Instead of having the Diocesan headquarters either in Kohima or in Imphal, Dimapur (Nagaland) was chosen as the temporary headquarters for the sake of convenience but with the division of the Diocese in 1980, Imphal became the headquarters for the Diocese of Imphal while Dimapur continued to be the headquarters for the Diocese of Kohima until 1991 when it got shifted to Kohima after the Cathedral was complete.

self, sitting at the lawn

Caught some kids in the Cathedral premises

My Dad, whose memoirs are always connected with this place & his Boss (Lt. Rt. Rev. Abraham Alangimattathil, The 1st Bishop of Nagaland)

The plot, about 9.13 acres, was purchased in 1980 from Mr. Satuo of Kochtu Clan, and the plan of Cathedral was initiated in 1984, followed by the actual work on 1986 and was consecration in 1991. The Lions share of the 3 Crores financial expense came from the Japanese in aid & memory of their fallen WWII soldiers who lay down their lives for their nation in the Kohima soil. Some help was also received from friends in Italy, England, Germany, Ireland, USA etc.

The majestic cathedral holds a seating capacity of 15,000 people.

The natural chamberoulie

The Cathedral is unique in many ways and is an outstanding presentation of the Naga culture in furniture, painting, design etc. Its architectural might and complexity is a surprise. The Cathedral is a semicircular building, its façade is shaped & modeled after Naga tradition & heritage. The Cathedral has a seating & standing capacity of 3000 & 15000, perhaps, one of the largest cathedrals in Asia. The Cathedral has official and residential rooms inside, has a natural light system, has a magnificent 16ft high crucifix of Jesus Christ, etc.

The magnificient wooden 16ft high crucifix.

The bell tower which holds half of the weight of the cathedral

At the back of the Bell Tower, way to LITTLE FLOWER SCHOOL (L.F.S)

Inside the cathedra, one can really feel the piousness & the existence of God.

The tomb of Lt. Rt. Rev. Abraham Alangimattathil, under the 16ft high crufix.


Thanks to Lt. Rt. Rev. Abraham Alangimattathil whose brainchild this cathedral is. He was the first Bishop of Nagaland who dreamt of a common place for all to pray and spend time in solitude and turned his dream into reality in January 1991. He left for the heavenly abodes on Nov. 18th 1997, his tomb remains in the Cathedral quite near under the 16ft high crucifix. Lt. Rt. Rev. Abraham Alangimattathil had lived and extensive missionary life as a priest and as a Bishop in NE, especially in Nagaland. He lived and died for Nagaland. I personally knew him when I was a child through my Dad as he used to run errands for him, he was really an intelligent and a very down-to-earth priest. Now, the present Bishop of Nagaland is Rt.Rev. Jose Mukala ( The 2nd Bishop)


(misc. pix)

Sumi & I, surrounded by pines at the backdrop.

Sumi and Bhab (Bou)

Pine trees in the Cathedral premises.... so calm & serene!

A closer view of the Kohima town from the Cathedral

The Cathedral & the House of the Bishop, together, as seen from a little higher up.

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