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Christian Art Museum in Old Goa, India, photo by Frederick Noronha
Christian Art Museum in Old Goa, India, photo by Frederick Noronha


Aug. 16, 2011

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The first museum of Christian art in Mumbai is set to open next month at the St. Pius seminary. The 2,000-square-foot museum plans to display 150 objects, according to the Times of India, including statues of saints, a 200-year-old altar and a pope’s headdress.

India is also home to the Museum of Christian Art at the Convent of St. Monica in Old Goa, but the collection there features many works of art created by Hindu artists during the Portuguese era. But the new museum may highlight an even older Christian heritage, with a timeline of Christianity in western India from 6 A.D. to the present under way.

Fleur d’Souza, a professor and member of the archbishop’s heritage committee, told the paper, "There is a mistaken assumption that Christianity came into western India with the Portuguese in the 16th century." Rather, there were much older Christian “pockets” in Kalyan, Sopara and Thane as a result of early trade routes.

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