Sancoale

Sancoale is situated in the Mormugao taluka a little way west of the tiny islet Sao Antonio which is located 1 km further west from the Sao Jacinto Island. It is well known in Goa as a magnificent church facade of the church of Nossa Senhora de Saude or Our Lady of Health is situated here.

In 1560, when the Jesuit missionary priests first reached Goa their landfall lay at the hamlet of Sancoale. The construction of the church of Nossa Senhora de Saude which was completed in 1566 on the site of an earlier Hindu temple commemorated this historic occasion.

The road leading to the church in Sancoale is known as the "Rua Escravo de Maria" road which means "Slave of Mother Mary Road." It was in this church in August 1677 that the Patron of Goa, Blessed Joseph Vaz, wrote his famed "Letter of Bondage" wherein he dedicated his life to Mother Mary.

In 1834 however a fire destroyed the building and only a part of the facade is left standing. This can be seen even from the Agassaim-Cortalim Bridge. It is typical of early Christian-Goan architecture with fancy plasterwork and decorative panels. The church facade is also still venerated as a National Monument and can be visited in the early morning which is the best time to visit the site.

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