Our Lady of Socorro

Merry Christmas to all readers.

Socorro here refers to the village in Bardez, Goa, not the town in New Mexico, USA (site of the Very Large Array).

The Church of Nossa Senhora do Socorro was built in 1763, and is ensconced in serene, picturesque surroundings. Its annual feast is celebrated every year on November 21. There are 4 altars inside, the main one dedicated to Our Lady of Socorro. Architectural highlights of the edifice are summarized below.

From: The Parish Churches of Goa by José Lourenço (Amazing Goa Publications, 2006)

  • Mannerist Neo-Roman, large, 5 x 3
  • Sequence of Arch-Rectangle-Oculus-Niche
  • Template has angels in relief at base and Franciscan insignia ‘AM’ at top
  • Tri-engaged columns in façade
  • Reduplicated mouldings in ground storey
  • Five quatrefoil openings in 3rd storey
  • Twin towers with stacked-pot finials
  • Oversized bell mounted outside right tower

Photographing the main altar presented a challenge. With natural light filtering in from only one side, the illumination was asymmetric. The artificial lighting in the interior was likewise patchy. I bracketed a set of exposures with the expectation that at least one would be optimal enough to withstand post-processing work to even out the tones.

Without the superb Canon Tilt-Shift 17mm lens, single exposure takes like the first two images below would not have been possible.

Nossa Senhora do Socorro church in Socorro, Goa

Church of Nossa Senhora do Socorro (1763) in Socorro, Goa
5D Mark II, TS-E 17L

Altar at Socorro church

Main altar at Socorro
5D Mark II, TS-E 17L

Shrine to Mary outside Socorro church

Shrine to Mary outside Socorro church
5D Mark II, 24-105L

  • soter - January 23, 2013 - 3:26 pm

    The altar is beautiful.ReplyCancel

  • gaspar almeida - July 12, 2012 - 6:37 am

    Excellent photography, as always Mr. Rajan Parrikar.
    Appreciate your contributions.

    Gaspar Almeida
    Associate, http://www.goa-world.com
    Moderator, Gulf-Goans e-Newsletter (since 1994)

  • B - December 28, 2010 - 9:39 pm

    Church built 1667; rebuilt & enlarged 1763
    History of the Church: http://socorropp0.tripod.com/id1.html
    Perhaps the statue atop the facade was installed in 1962. It is not clear when the the amendments (if any) were made to accommodate the bell-tower that have altered the symmetry near the right tower.ReplyCancel

  • Rajan P. Parrikar - December 24, 2010 - 6:02 pm


    The parish was first established in 1667. The church in the present form was built in the years 1763-1765. I am not sure what 1962 refers to – will find out.ReplyCancel

  • Arun - December 24, 2010 - 5:55 pm

    The years 1667 and 1765 are on the church, along with 13-?-1962 – what do they refer to?ReplyCancel

  • Arun - December 24, 2010 - 5:52 pm

    Gorgeous has already been used 🙁 so some synonymous superlative 🙂ReplyCancel

  • B - December 24, 2010 - 5:38 am

    Our church looks gorgeous in this photo. Just like the countryside around it anytime of the year.ReplyCancel

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