St. Andrew's Church, Palai
St. Andrew's Church, Palai
Date of Consecration
1895 - 11 - 30
Jaffna Archdeaconry
Revd John Athputhamany

Pallai was a small town in the 1860s, 32miles east, away from Jaffna. The sharing of the Good news by the CMS greatly helped the community to come up. Particularly, the role of Revd.John Backus first as catechist from 1868 and later as priest from 1885 to 1903 really facilitated the existence of the Christian community.

In his speech at the dedication of St.Andrew’s Church held on St.Andrew’s day (November 30) 1895, he stated that they had held a Holy Communion service with a handful men 30 years ago in a cadjan shed about 12 feet square. He acknowledged God’s grace and expressed gratitude for the life of 230 persons and the Church. The Church was built at a cost of Rs 11,000. In 1868 he went to Palai and made it as his head quarters for the district ministry. He thanked Mr.W.Koch, Mr.J.J.Patterson, Mr.W.M.S.Twynam, Mr.W.C.Twynam and number of others for their support. In fact the foundation stone laid on October 15, 1889. It is appropriate to state that Pallai Church stands as a glorious monument to the untiring ministry of Revd.J.Backus.

The dedication service itself was arranged in such a way that all were able to experience God and witness. There were 7 CMS clergy who marched in a procession to the decorated Church from the gate. Selected psalms were read till they reached the Church door. On their entering the Church, the hymn ‘All people that on earth do dwell…’ was sung. Revds.C.C.Handy and G. Daniel offered the prayers. Revds.C.J. Williams and S. Morse read lessons. Revds.J.Carter and J.Backus preached in English (Matthew 21:13) and Tamil (Ezekiel 48:35) and Revd. Pickford concluded. The offertory was Rs 1100.78. Records state that the following items filled the church: vessels for Holy Communion, Communion table (teak), 02 damask cloths for Communion table, one ordinary cover, credence table (teak), 02 sanctuary chairs (teak), silver alms dish, credence – paten, Alter rails (teak), 02 candle lamps, 02 globe lamps, almirah for vestry (teak), cathedral glass for window, 12 pews (teak), 02 alms bags, lection (teak), looking glass, kneeling cushions for Alter rails, par of gates (teak).


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Contact Details

Postal Address
St. Andrew's Church, Palai
021 2050011

bishop of colombo rt revd dushantha rodrigo


Daily Bible Verses

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