We were engrossed in the various sites and the history associated with them. Everything was so fascinating. Patna must have been a place of great knowledge and sanctity. To explore more of the place, we moved further to the next destination that was the Padri ki Haveli of Patna.
Padri Ki Haveli (Priest’s Mansion) is the name of a church which is also called as St. Mary’s Church. This was the first time I heard such an unusual name of a church and was extremely curious to know the reason behind it.
The church is located in the city itself, and thus didn’t require much travelling or time to visit it. Soon we came to know that it is one of the prominent spiritual place of Patna. This is the oldest known church in entire state of Bihar, which was built by followers Roman Catholics in the year 1713 and had gloriously celebrated its 300th years of foundation in the year 2013. The place is a famous tourist’s destination, many of them visit to know the historical significance of the church and many come here because of its association with Mother Teresa.
The church was renovated to a large extent during 1772-1779 under the supervision of a Venetian architect who came all along Calcutta for the work. It was his efforts that gave the church the look it has today. This was done because the church was destructed a few times in 1763 and the records contained in it were burnt by the soldiers of Nawab Mir Qasim who had a squabblewith the English traders. Further, in 1857, communal attacks had their effects on the church also.
When we reached in front of the church, we could see the tally building proudly standing in front of us, as though raising its heads high despite of all the attacks. This holy place of Christians was around fifty feet in height, forty feet in width and seventy feet in length.
The Church was also home to Mother Teresa for three months during the time of the year 1948. She visited for training in Holy Family Hospital. Her then room is still preserved with her things like the cot, table etc, that attracts a lot of tourists. The church is open to all sections of people.