Medan, Part 14 - Annai Velangkanni

By jo.yean - March 18, 2014

Annai Velangkanni... Graha Maria Annai Velangkanni. The infamous place in Medan where all would come be it a Catholic or not. Indeed this is one place you should not miss.


This unique Marian shrine dedicated to Our Lady of Good Health is called Graha MAria Annai Velangkanni. Based on the popular devotion to Mary who is said to have appeared in 17th century in a coastal village called Vailankanni in Tamil Nadu, India. She has come to be known as Annai Velangkanni meaning Mother of Velangkanni just as Mary, Our Lady of Lourdes and Our Lady of Fatima. Now she has taken her residence in Medan, for the first time to make it an archdiocesan pilgrimage center in Indonesia.

The Uniqueness of the shrine lies in the originality of its Indo-Mogul architecture, in its ornaments and display of colours done by amatuer hands and above all in its Biblical content.


The whole concept of the shrine was inspired by one of the contemplation on the mystery of Incarnation as suggested in the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius of Layola, the founder of the Jesuit order. The designer, Rev. Fr. James Bharataputra S.J. has treied to five a concrete form to his life long contemplation as a Jesuit.

Picture adapted from http://jnlk.blogspot.com/2012/12/medan-berastagi-lake-toba-family-trip.html




Picture adapted from actual Annai Velangkanni site. 
Black Colour :
If you look at the asphalted entrance, you cannot but notice a human figure in its dark and sinfulness fallen in prostration with its out-stretched arms, before God the Holy Trinity in heaven which is symbolically represented by the seven-stories tower and the three domes of Graha Maria.

Gray Colour (Ash Colour) :
Is considered to be a symbol of repentance in the Bible. You notice that the dominant colour of Graha Maria is GRAY. Hence, Graha Maria is meant to proclaim repentance to all who come to visit her.

White Colour :
The sinful man in prostration pleads for God's mercy in order to become pure and holy (WHITE) like Him. But God tells him that man has to repent of his sins.

Red Colour :
Once man has become holy through repentance and wants to remain in holiness for long he has to sacrifice himself (RED) every day.

Green Colour :
When man looses his life through sacrificing his self for the sake of God and for the sake of others, he will have God's life (GREEN) in him.

Blud Colour :
Once man has God's life in him, he has the right to enter heaven (BLUE).

Yellow-Gold :
And when man enters heaven, God will glorify him in eternal glory (YELLOW-GOLD) as it appears on the top of three domes of the Graha tower.




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