There is never a dearth of interesting sights and experiences when you travel to coastal Karnataka, especially the South Canara region. Mangalore and Udupi are replete with interesting experiences spanning art, culture, history and nature making them perfect gems for the immersive traveller. The St. Lawrence Shrine Basilica located in Attur is one such place that forms for a truly insightful visit. Located about 40 km from Udupi and 350 km from the capital city of Bangalore, the St. Lawrence church is believed to be a highly auspicious site and attracts devotees from all over.
Built way back in 1759, the church is dedicated to St Lawrence who was born in the 3rd century. An extremely virtuous young man, St Lawrence was the first among the seven deacons who served in the Roman Church. Known to be the saviour of the poor and helper of the needy, St. Lawrence became the Pope’s Archdeacon. He was sadly martyred in 258 and the present Papal Basilica of Saint Lawrence in Rome is built over his grave.
It is believed that the shrine of St Lawrence existed in Attur much before 1759 and was patronised by a number of Christians back then. It soon developed into a place of pilgrimage with more and more people experiencing the powerful intercession of St. Lawrence. The last 30 years have seen tremendous development in the infrastructure of the shrine including the addition of the 100 feet high tower adorned with religious art of various regions, the renovation of the ‘Miracle-Pond’ (Pushkarni), the construction of the twin gates and the extension of church building.
The annual feast which happens in January each year is a highlight of the shrine. Purported to be the site of many miracles, make sure you visit this shrine on your next visit to Udupi.