Basilica of Bom Jesus


Situated in Old Goa, the Basilica of Bom Jesus was built in 1605 AD. The Basilica is home to the tomb and mortal remains of St Francis Xavier and is a monument typical of the classic forms of architecture introduced by the Society of Jesus, otherwise known as the Jesuits. It is the only church in Old Goa that is not plastered on the outside. The façade though un-plastered, is a magnificent example of baroque architecture combining elements of Doric, Ionic and Corinthian design, The interior of the church is a study in contrasts. The design in itself is simple, but the floor is laid with the finest marble, and was inlaid with precious stones. The retable of the main altar exhibits a huge statue of Saint Ignatius of Loyola, the founder (along with St. Francis Xavier who was a founding member) of the Society of Jesus and below it, a small image of Bom Jesus (Child Jesus), the patron of the church.
On the southern side of the transept lies the Chapel of St. Francis Xavier. This chapel has carved and gilded columns and wood-carved floral decorations. This is where the relics of the saint are kept.
The Basilica also contains a modern art gallery with paintings depicting various Biblical scenes.