About 50 years ago, the area north of Sanganur Paflam (Mountain Rivulet) was a wild area, with a few farms & houses dotting the landscape here and there and during the rainy season unapproachable, all slush a ad mud. But the ever growing dynamics of old Coimbatore bursting on all its seams, with more and more people pouring in seeking a livelihood from the surrounding villages, has changed its face within the last 50 years, with shanty towns and also posh residential areas springing up like musbrooms This upcoming area was part of Gandhipuram Parish. Many old Catholics from the Cathedral Parish (of ancient Kannuvakkarai and Gobichettipalayam area) of the weaver’s area and Vellalas, originating from Madurai, forming the major Catholic population. Till a bridge across the wild mountain stream (also in common parlance, called “Ellennai Pallam Mountain stream of”7 buffaloes” because once it had washed away 7 buffaloes) was built the Catholics of this area found it difficult to go tonp parish for their spiritual needs. Hence, the people approached Bishop Savarimuthu, who with the help of Mr. Paul Raj and others, first bought a piece of land and put up a temporary shed (50 feet x 20 feet) for Sunday Massr As the population increased it was extended. At the same time, a larger plot was acquired towards the east (the present church site) but since there was some problems from the Government who wanted to acquire the site for their own municipal purposes, the Catholics, first erected a Cross and a shed there (where the main Alter now stands) and started the Calvary devotions there. The Capuchins from Gandhipuram were in charge then.
On 6.31983 the area between the Sanganoor Pallam with the Ply line as the Western border and Sathiamangalani Road to the East and Sanganoor-Ganapathy road to the north and the same Pallam to the south was created, as a separate parish (with neither parish church, nor presbytery at that time) by Bishop Ambrose and Fr. John Xavier (Popularly called “Illango”, because of his poetical talents in Tamil) was made the Parish priest. He undertook the strenuous task of making a complete census of the Parish, from a rented house and fought the battle for the church land. Fr. D. Arokiaswamy (popularly known as Fr. Mani) who endeared himself to the Parishioners, worked hard to build up the parish into a cohesive parish family. At the request of the people an English medium Nursery School was started in the temporary shed residing in the same rented house. He was succeeded by the dynamic Fr. M. Aruldas who first extended the shed, with 2 very small rooms and made it his living quarters! For sometime, Fr. A. Manthara was also a ‘Socius’ to him, when Fr. Aruldass started planning for the new church and had to frequently rush to Madras to fight the legal battles. He had earlier constructed the compound wall and a temporary shed equal in size along the compound wall, for the benefit of the people. On 11 .8. 1992, the foundation stone was laid for a new huge church, with many architectural innovative features (one of them is a Crypt chapel for private meditation). To collect funds he travelled upto Bombay, and the new elegant Church was constructed and consecrated by Bishop Ambrose on 16.2.1996. The foundation stone for a new 2 floor presbytery (equally unique, in having an under-ground hall (Parish Hall), was laid on 31.5.1996, and it was blessed on 29.06.1998. The first floor was blessed on 7.12.1996. His successor Fr. B.Ephraem (1997-1999), constructed the ground floor for a new school building and it was blessed on 29.06.1998. An entirely “Sound system” was installed, thus replacing the indistinct and mandible earlier system, by the tireless efforts ol Fr. Paul Antony, Assistant Parish Priest. Earlier a way side Grottc of our Lady of Vellankanni at the school premises was constructed by Fr. Aruldas. The first floor of the school was constructed h) Fr. Kulandal Raj in 2003. As a remembrance of the year of Hol) Rosary, a Grotto was constructed by Fr. Amalraj and it was blesscc by Bishop Thomas Aquinas on 25.03.2003.
The young men, who settled here, had a special devotion t St. Sebastian and formed an Association under his patronage an they took to playing a leading role from its inception. When the question of choosing a Patron for the Parish came, the obvious choice should have been St. Sebastian, whose feast the Association had been celebrating But Bishop Savarimuthu managed to convince them in favour of St. Paul the Apostle, since there is no separate church in his honour in our Diocese and thus St. Paul became the Patron Saint of the Parish.
Sub - station :
Karunanithi Nagar :
It is situated in a peculiar geographic location between the Railway Line, going to Mettupalayam and the new Railway line to Erode, with Sanganur Pallam to the South. There is no approach road to it except through the western part of Gandhipuram Parish. But since it is to the north of the Pallam, the boundary, it is a substation of Rathinapuri. It is a real shanty town with some catholic families. A small chapel was put up in honour of St. Dominic (the reason for the choice is not known St. Dominic is a not a Capuchin Saint). A temporary chapel was put up on a small plot of land bought and latter it was modified into a permanent chapel.
Main Station Distance from the Cathedral Church : 5 K.Ms.
Total No. of Catholic Families both in the Main & Sub Station : 1350
Total No. of Catholic Families in the Main Station : 1300
No. of Catholics in the Main station : 6000
Weekdays : 6.15 a.m & 6.00 p.m
Sundays 5.45 am, 7.30 am, 10.30 a.m & 5.30 p.m
Diocesan Institution :
1. St. Paul’s English Medium School - Nursery & Primary 0422 - 2521985
Lay Association :
1. Vincent De Paul Society
2. Catholic Association
3. St.Sebastian Prayer Association
4. Catholic Youth Movement
5. Altar Boys Association
6. Legion of Mary
1. Women Senior
2. Men Senior
3. Boys Junior
4. Girls Junior
Patronal Feast: First week of July: St. Paul, The Apostal
SUB - STATION
1. Karunanithi Nagar
Distance - 2.5 K.Ms
Families - 50
No. of Catholics - 240
Mass Timings - Sunday 7.30 a.m
Lay Associations - 1. St. Swaminathar Recreation Club
2. Legion of Mary 2
Women Senior 1
Mixed Junior 1
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