About St Anthony Church
A Brief History Of The Shrine Of Dornahalli
History of Church
In 1886, when His Holiness Pope Leo XIII established the Indian Ecclesiastical Hierarchy by His Papal Bull "Humanae Salutis Auctor", Mysore became a diocese with Bangalore as its Headquarters. The Present Diocese of Mysore comprises the four civil districts of Mysore, Mandya, Kodagu and Chamarajanagara. It is bordering clockwise on the Archdiocese of Bangalore, Ootacamund, Calicut, Mangalore and Chickmagalur. The present St. Anthony Shrine of Dornahalli located in the Diocese of Mysore, Mysore District, K.R. Nagar Taluk. This is one of the oldest shrine in south India.
Appeal therefore to the Miraculous St. Anthony of Dornahalli : To find lost treasures,to find employment,In your sickness and sufferings,in all your domestic needs: and above all, in your spiritual needs..
This Miraculous Statue of St.Anthony has an authentic history now covering a period over two hundred years. A humble Hindu-Peasant, while ploughing his ragi field suddenly came across a small wooden statue; and thinking it for a ‘doll’, he gave it to his children to play with.
Vision and Mandate
Tradition says that one night he had a dream in which a friar wearing the same dress as that of the statue appeared to him and told him that the object turned up by his plough was no more ‘doll’, as he thought; but a statue of a revered catholic saint, known all over the world as Wonder-Worker, that he would like to have a special Shrine in his honour in that place of discovery and that he and his family would be blessed.
The farmer, however, turned a deaf ear to this admonition and his children continued to play with this ‘doll’ as before. In the course of a week his bullocks died and two untimely deaths of his children occurred, which he attributed to his negligence to carry out the instructions received in the dream. He woke up from his lethargy and fearing further calamities, resolved to put into execution the earnest desire of the saint.
In those days, a catholic priest used to come from Pondicherry to visit Bangalore and Mysore once a year. The farmer met the priest in Mysore and invited him to his little village Dornahalli and narrated to him the whole series of events and delivered the miraculous statue. The priest at once recognized the statue about 13 ½” high and without hands as that of St.Anthony of Padua, and urged the farmer to carry out the instructions received in his dream. The farmer erected a little shrine in the field where he had found the statue.
Thereafter the farmer’s affairs began to prosper exceedingly well. He was not slow to ascribe this happy turn of events to the divine influence of the saint, and as the news spread the Shrine became the centre of devotion in spite of various obstacles and hardships. People began to flock to the shrine to seek the saint’s intercession in their distress and sorrows; and the saint was not slow to bestow on them marvelous favours of body and soul. The fame of the Shrine grew fast as devotees advertised the favours received through this Saint Anthony of Dornahalli, and soon a catholic village grew up in the environs of the shrine.
As time went on, the original very crude Shrine was built over with a more impressive edifice. But even this open air Shrine was inadequate. A third chapel was built later on, which now has been turned into a presbytery. A fine church was erected in 1920, thanks to the generosity of a devout client of St.Anthony, the late Mr.T.Dharmaraj Chetty, a former Dewan of Mysore. Rev. Fr.S. D’Silva, the zealous and energetic parish priest of raise this sacred edifice. Thanks to his zeal and energy several improvements were effected.
In the heginning facilities were inadequate for the pilgrims. But now several facilities are available: there is a Railway station-Dornahalli on Mysore-Arsikere line. There is also a good motorable road from Mysore to Krishnarajanagar via Dornahalli. There is a regular bus service on this road for the convenience of the pilgrims.
Rt. Rev. Msgr.I.H.Lobo, the former parish priest of Dornahalli began the construction of a new church in 1964. On 13th June, the same year the foundation, stone of this huge church was laid by His Lordship the Bishop of Mysore. On 13th June, 1969 the new Church was consecrated by His Lordship, the Bishop of Mysore. Rev. Fr. Thomas Paulus built the dome of the Shrine. Rev. Fr. Gilbert D'silva, a zealous and committed worker, was responsible for constructing the interlocks around the church, the Tripti Complex for accomodation, the New shrine with the miracles of St Anthony, St Anthony's PU College and Nursery School.
Innumerable are the favours obtained by the devotees of Dornahalli St. Anthony. Some of the Favours received are published in the Kannada monthly Messenger of the Sacred Heart, published from Dornahalli. Surely St.Anthony of Padua is glorious here in India under the title ‘Miraculous St. Anthony of Dornahalli’. Besides the Miraculous Statue, there is a relic of the Bone of the Saint in the Shrine. Petitions and offerings are being received by the parish priest throughout the year; and when so desired by the devotees, particular favours are published in the monthly messenger.
The present Rector of the Shrine Rev. Fr. Dr. Arogya Swamy the has arrived in the month of August, 2016 and has great plans ahead.