Chronicles of Nirmalagiri Mary Matha Shrine
From 1978 to 2014 - Diocese of Eluru,
Gowripatnam – 534 313, W. G. Dt., A. P., INDIA
Genesis & Chronicles of Nirmalagiri Shrine
Bifurcation & Formation of ELURU Diocese: 9th Dec, 1976
Consecration of Bishop John Mulagada: 5th May, 1977
Installation: 8th May, 1977
May 14th, 1978
Bishop John had to stop his car for a repair at this very same place of Nirmalagiri. As he had seen the Hill on the roadside; a walk able distance from the Road, a flash inspiration came to his mind “Why not I make this place as Pilgrimage Centre Dedicated to Mother Mary?” He stood and prayed for a moment in the same place where Our Lady of Nirmalagiri stands.
Lands began to be acquired by the Diocese. Fr. Dominic OFM Cap., the parish priest of Annadevarapet began to contact the local leaders and the Formers.
Sep 8th, 1981
Our Lady of Nirmalagiri Statue was blessed by the Most Rev. Joseph Thumma as Bishop John Mulagada was in Europe.
March 25th, 1982
The first feast of Nirmalagiri Matha was celebrated and the Crucifix at the top of the steps was blessed by the Most Rev. S, Arulaiah, Bishop of Cudapah, in the Presence of the Most Rev. P. C. Balaswamy, Bishop of Nellore and Bishop John Mulagada of Eluru.
Sep 8th, 1982
The first building, the present presbytery was constructed and was blessed by the Most Rev. John Mulagada
March 25th, 1983
Hospital and T. B. Sanitorium were blessed by the the Most Rev. Joseph Thumma of Vijayawada and Most Rev. John Mulagada
March 25th, 1984
The Shrine was blessed by the Most Rev. Victor Sanmiguel OCD, the Grotto by the Most Rev. A. Berreta, Bishop of Warangal, the Way of the Cross and Mysteries of the Rosary by the Most Rev. K. Mariadas, by the then Bishop of Guntur. The Shrine, Grotto, Hospital and the convent were built by Rev. Fr. Jose Kaimlett, and Rev. Fr. K. V. Augustine.
March 10th, 1985
TheS isters of the Destitutes from Kerlala were invited and asked to take up the Hospital and Educational activities at Nirmalagiri. The Convent and the Hospital were handed over to them.
1986, 56 acres of land was bought on the hill since 1978.
June 9th, 1986
The School was established was blessed by the Most Rev. John Mulagada
August 25th, 1986
Floods to the River Godavari and Marooned Isalnds in east and west Godavari Districtcts and in particular Konaseema. 50 thousand people were brought to the Hill from the marooned islands; and rescue and relief activities were extended to the flood victims, both from the government and church sides to the affected ones. We had no shelter even to keep food material. Then onwards the Bishop had to have multi-purpose hall for the people and the church for the pilgrims.
May 5th, 1987
Nirmalagiri was erected canonically as Parish with a few villages and Rev. Fr. Michael Guzzula (Late) was appointed as the first parish priest and director of the shrine. During his tenure the road, steps to the hill, Stage for the cultural activities and the pilgrims hall were built.
April 25th, 1992
Rev. Fr. Aaron Dirisina was appointed as the Parish Priest and the Shrine Director.
July 3rd, 1992
On the solemnity of St. Thomas the apostle of India, the Foundation stone for the Church was laid by the Most Rev. John Mulagada and the Most Rev. M. Joji, Bishop of Khammam.
The construction of the Church resumed after a break of three years.
July 3rd, 1995
Prema Seva Ashram was established in Nirmalagiri, by the Rev. Fr. Jesu Rajan. By now we brought 130 acres of land.
May 5th, 1996
The foundation stone was blessed for Nirmala Hrudaya College for Girls by the Most Rev. John Mulagada, the Most Rev. Matthew Cherian Kunnel PIME, the Most Rev. Johnnes Gorantla, Bishop of Kurnool, the Most Rev. M. Joji Bishop of Khammam and Very Rev. Msgr. K. Joji Babu, Vicar General of Visakhapatnam.
December 20th 1997
The blessing of Nirmala Hrudaya College by the Most Rev. John Mulagada
October 7th, 1998
The Most Rev. John Mulagada received the blessing of His Holiness Pope John Paul – II for shrine during his visit to Rome.
October 15th, 1998
Ashram buildings were blessed by the Most Rev. John Mulagada in the Presence of Very Rev. Fr. Bernard Michon, Superior General of Foye de Charite – France.
July 29th, 1999
The Little Apostle of Redemption of Italy (LAR) was given a small Portion of land for starting a community and boarding home at Nirmalagiri.
December 25th, 1999
The Ordinary Blessing of the Church and the opening of the jubilee doors on Christmas day by the Most Rev. K. Mariadas, Bishop of Visakhaptnam (Statues and Santuary)
The Most Rev. A. Innaiah, Bishop of Srikakulam (Way of the Cross)
The Most Rev. M. Joji, Bishop of Vijayawada (Annunciation and Crib Grotto)
The Most Rev. John Mulagada, Eluru (Mysteries of the Rosary, Priests Home and multi-purpose Hall).
February 7th, 2000
Home for the aged was built by the St. Vincent de Paul society and it was blessed by the Most Rev. John Mulagada. National, central, regional council and local presidents were present.
The Magnificient Church,a Tribute to Mother Mary Millennium Jubilee memorial Church was consecrated by His Eminence Most. Rev. Lorenzo Baldisseri, Apostolic Nuncio to India, Very Rev. Msgr. Bernard A. Prince, the General Secretary, Propaganda Fide, Rome. All the Bishops of Andhra Pradesh and some Bishops from the other parts of India were present. From this year onwards the Nirmalagiri Matha feast is being celebrated at Nirmalagiri for four days i.e. from 22nd to 25th March.
B.T. Roads are done at the shrine.
May 8th, 2000
As pilgrims increased in number, Nitya Annadanam(Soup Kitchen) programme was started.
July 6th, 2000
Perpetual Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament was started by the Most Rev. Bishop John Mulagada.
August 15th, 2000
Annadanam Building was blessed by the Most Rev. John Mulagada.
March 13th, 2002
The Ashram Church was blessed.
July 5th, 2004
The Most Rev. John Mulagada Blessed Nirmala Hrudaya College Hostel.
February 12th, 2004
Vatican Ambassador’s Visit 2004: The Most Rev. Pedro Lopez de Quintana, Apostolic Nuncio to India and Nepal visited this Magnificent Nirmalagiri Church & shrine.
February 10th, 2006
Foundation stone laid for the Rosary Gardens in Prema Seva Ashram.
July 14th, 2006
Foundation laid for the Adoration Chapel in Prema Seva Ashram.
Oct 7th, 2006
The foundation stone for the Jesus Tower was blessed and laid on 7th Oct 2006 by Most Rev. Bishop John Mulagada.
December 10th, 2006
Jubilee Memorial Tower construction started.
January 4th, 2007
Two bore wells are done at the Jubilee Tower and the other at the Millennium Church.
March 9th, 2007
B. T. Road via LAR convent way is done.
March 25th, 2007
After three days of celebrations of Nirmalagiri Matha Feast at Gowripatnam from 22nd to 24th. On 25th Sunday at 5:30 pm Solemn welcome is given to our beloved Bishops of Andhra Pradesh at the entrance Grotto.
The Most Rev. Gali Bali Bishop of Guntur Received the Bible Jyothi. The Most Rev. A. Innayya Bishop of Srikakulam blessed the statue of Pieta and the Most Rev. M. Prakash Bishop of Vijayawada blessed the Holy Redeemers Statue in Jubilee memorial Tower. The Most Rev. Govind Joji Bishop of Nalgonda blessed the statue of St. George at shrine steps.
The Most Rev. K. Mariadas Archbishop of Vizag Officiated the Holy Eucharistic Celebration. The Most Rev. Thumma Bala Preached the Homily during the Eucharistic Celebration. The Most Rev. John our beloved Bishop Welcomed and thanked al the Bishops and dignitaries. Rev .Fr. Aaron Dirisina the shrine Director expressed the sentiments of Gratitude to all the Bishops and all those who rendered their service for the great successes of the Feast.
May 5th, 2007
Newly constructed Adoration Chapel, Confession Chapel and the Resurrection statue on the top of the chapel, amidst the Rosary Gardens was Blessed and inaugurated in Prema Seva Ashram by His Excellency Most Rev. John Mulagada as a mark of 30 years of His Episcopal consecration. Msgr. K. Joji Babu and many Priests and Religious were present.
March 25th, 2009
The ‘Jesus Tower’ at the Highway road side was blessed and inaugurated on 25th March 2009 by the Most. Rev. Archbishop Marampudi Joji Adchbishop of Hyderabad, Most. Rev. M. D. Prakasham Bishop of Nellore and Most Rev. Bishop John Mulagada of Eluru.
May 1st, 2009
The work of levelling the ground and filling the valley behind the Millennium Church began on 1st May 2009. The work of levelling was undertaken in view of the construction of St. Thomas Tower. The work is at progress on massive scale even today July 2012.
July 30th, 2013
Bishop Jaya Rao Polimera, as he was Consecrated and appointed as the Second Bishop of Eluru Diocese 25th July by Most. Rev. Salvotore Pennachio, came to Nirmalagiri shrine and celebrated thanksgiving Mass and 5000 pilgrims attended the Holy Mass as it was Sunday.
Nov 15th, 2013
At the end of Annual retreat at Nirmalagiri, the Year of Faith was celebrated at Diocesan level with the clergy, the religious and the faithful and Most. Rev. Jaya Rao Polimera presided over the celebrations along with Most Rev. Udumala Bala and it was grand closing of the celebrations.
Jan 28th, 2014
His Eminence Telesphore Placidus Cardinal Toppo, Archbishop of Ranchi visited Nirmalagiri Shrine and Blessed the Pilgrims and the Parishioners as we had the adoration and the benediction.
March 25th, 2014
Nirmalagiri Festivals were celebrated in grand scale on 22nd to 25th March. On 25th march Bishop Jaya Rao Polimera presided over the celebrations and Most Rev. M. D. Prakasham, the Bishop of Nellore Preached the Homily that was touching to the hearts of the pilgrims.
July 20th, 2014
We had the Nirmalagiri Vicariate meeting at Nirmalagiri Shrine as Rev. Fr. Jacob Pingula presided as Episcopal vicar and all the parish priests of the vicariate participated the meeting.
August 27th, 2014
At this stage Nirmalagiri is growing as a Marian Shrine and pilgrim centre, still we need to provide a lot of facilities to the pilgrims, like Pilgrims cottages, Bathing rooms, Canteens etc..
On our beloved Bishop’s Birthday the foundation was laid for the construction of twenty bathing rooms and toilets for the pilgrims at the Shrine by the Shrine Director Rev. Fr. Aaron.