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June 26, 2012
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The St. Anthony's Forane Church Parish and Shrine of St. Raphael the Archangel, Ollur, Thrissur District is in the Syro-Malabar Archdiocese of Trichur. Today it forms an important part of the Thrissur City Corporation. The Christian presence in the parish is so strong with its many religious, educational, medical, social-service, and secular organisations and institutions that for the past two centuries it has been called CHINNA ROMA or Little Rome. When the Trichur Vicariate Apostolic was erected in 1887 spreading from the Bharatha River to the Aluva River Ollur was the richest, most populous, and influencial parish, so much so the vicar of the parish and a priest from the parish were included in A.E. Medlycot's four-member diocesan apex council. Although many parishes have been formed from the mother parish of Ollur there are still nearly four thousand Catholic families in the parish whose spiritual needs are met by the Forane Vicar and parish priest assisted by two or three priests in addition to the dozens of Rev. Sisters who work in the parish institutions often along with their separate chaplains. There ar thirteen KURISHUPALLIES in the parish and nearly fifty Family Assemblies (Units) under six regions. The festival of St. Raphael the Archangel is the most important festival falling on October 23rd and 24th of each year. The festival in honour of St. Sebastian in the month of January is the second major festival The parish celebrates some 73 feasts and festivals in the calendar year. The art works and architecture of the church have won national recognition for their antiquity, excellece, use of indigenous materials,talent, and styles .

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