The original St. Michael's Church is believed to have been built in the early 16th century by a church builder called Antonio do Porto. It is said that during this time, the church was located on the banks of the Mandav and served as a convent. Ever since its construction, the church was frequently rebuilt and restored. Around the 18th century, there was a popular chapel in Bandra known as the 'Our Lady of the Mount'. This building was believed to be destroyed by the Portuguese under British bidding. A famous picture of Virgin Mary, believed to have been rescued from the destroyed chapel, was given refuge at St. Michael's Church. Ever since, the image has remained with the church and is also one of the key attractions at the church.
For a long time after the attack at the chapel, there was growing tension between the Apostolic Vicars and the Padroado Order and eventually, the church was under the apostolic custody for the next 60 years. Following brutal sieges and counterattacks, the custody of the church was finally passed to the Portuguese Padroado Order. One of the only surviving Portuguese buildings, St. Michael's Church serves as a proof of the influence of various colonial powers. The present structure that stands today was rebuilt in 1973.
Legend has it that the church was built in 1565. Ever since its construction there were continuous renovations and overhauls till the 20th century, the latest one being in 1973. Today, in parts and places, one can notice that St. Michael's church has reduced to a deteriorated condition. Initially, glass paintings, arched structures, wooden benches, images of Virgin Mary and Jesus Christ gracefully adorned this beautiful Catholic Church. All remnants of Portuguese architecture have long disappeared since the constant and innumerable renovations of the church over the centuries. Now, the structure is just a beige and red magnificent edifice, standing as one of the oldest Portuguese buildings in the city.
Things To Do
A small flea market situated on the pavement opposite the church is ideal to buy candles, garlands, fresh flowers and accessories either for church or for personal use. The Novena service held at church on Wednesdays is a fantastic opportunity to attend a special mass and also get your wishes granted! It is believed that those who attend the Novena services on 9 successive Wednesdays will have their wishes granted.