The St. Mary’s Syro-Malabar Catholic Forane Church in Bharananganam is a 1000 year old ancient church in Kerala, which is located 5 km east of Pala in Kottayam district. The Church is popularly known as the Bharananganam Church and holds the mortal remains of Saint Alphonsa, who is the first woman to be conferred sainthood from the Kerala Church.
Saint Alphonsa was an Indian religious sister and educator and was born on 19th August 1910. She died at a young age of 36 on 28 July 1946 and was buried at the Bharanganam Church. Sister Alphonsa was beatified on 8th February 1986 by Pope John Paul II during his Apostolic Visit to India. She was canonized on 12th October 2008 by Pope Benedict XVI at Saint Peter’s Square in Vatican City.
The St. Mary’s Syro-Malabar Catholic Church in Bharananganam is one of the most popular Christian pilgrimage destinations in Kerala and people from different parts of the world visit this holy shrine while on their trip to Kerala.
The Annual Feast of the St. Alphonsa which is held in the month of July is one of the major festivals of this Church.