Soaring Spirit: 450 years of Margao’s Espírito Santo Church (1565-2015)

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Soaring Spirit: 450 years of Margao's Espírito Santo Church (1565-2015) | Valmiki Faleiro

Soaring Spirit: 450 years of Margao’s Espírito Santo Church (1565-2015)

Valmiki Faleiro

Goa 1556

April 2015


304 pages

The first church in South Goa was built not in Verna, site of the first Mass on the soil of the district in 1519, nor in Cortalim, which saw the first conversion to Christianity in Salcete in 1560. It was not built in Margao, the principal centre of the district either. The first church was not built by the Franciscans, the first to arrive in India, or by the Jesuits, who evangelized Salcete…. This book offers facts, solves puzzes and throws up colourful details of an institution that shaped Margao’s life for centuries. It walks us through the times of our ancestors, many generations removed. ‘ But while zooming into details, Faleiro does not miss the big picture. Quoting historians and scholars, challenging legends and assumptions, he presents a world of acts. A list of Margao’s priests, and an insightful introduction to the Largo da Igreja, the chruch square, and its people, are what lend further charm to this book.

One of Goa’s homegrown prolific writers, Valmiki Faleiro was active in the media between the mid-1970s and mid-1980s. As a working journalist, he was Staff Reporter with the West Coast Times. He also covered Goa for national publications like The Current Weekly, the Free Press Journal (FPJ, Onlooker, etc.) and the Indian Express. As a freelancer before that, he contributed articles and features to various journals like The Navhind Times, Goa Today, The Sun Weekly, Newstrek, Detective Digest, Mirror and Newsmag. Faleiro was among the one dozen-odd Indians selected for the Workshop for Asian Writers held in March-1977 at the India International Centre, New Delhi (in collaboration with the Authors’ Guild of India and Ministry of Education, Government of India, in association with the Federation of Indian Publishers, New Delhi) and received the certificate of completion from the then acting President of India, B.D. Jatti. Faleiro worked his way through other professions too. He was also, briefly (1985-87), the Municipal President of Margao. On taking to the pen once again, after a gap of two decades, he wrote a couple of chapters for a book on Goa’s print media, In Black and White: Insiders’ stories about the press in Goa, first print version 2008, some parts on Goan music for Greatest Konkani Song Hits-Vol 1 by Francis Rodrigues, Pater Publications Toronto 2009 and for over four years (2005 to 2009), penned an eminently readable regular Sunday column in a local daily newspaper, revealing a style that remained as readable, well-informed and convincingly-argued as ever. His first book, Patriotism in Action: Goans in India s Defence Services, Goa,1556, was published in 2010. Mail: 160 Mons. Ganganelli Rebelo Road, Near Holy Spirit Church, Margao – 403 601, Goa, India Email: Tel.: +91 832 273 0435


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