Church of St. Francis of Assisi, Diu

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One of the oldest churches in Diu, the Church of St. Francis of Assisi was built in 1593. The actual name of the saint was Giovanni di Pietro di Bernardone, but his father used to call him Francesco. He was an Italian Catholic preacher, who was later on canonized as a saint by Pope Gregory IX on 16th July, 1228.

Saint Francis was one of the two patron saints of Italy. A great lover of animals and nature, he was regarded as their patron saint. The church is built on a hill top, and its location close to the vast expanse of Arabian Sea lends it a divine and mystical ambience. It is one of the most venerated Christian shrines in the area.

The layout design and construction of the church follows the European tradition in architecture. It can be reached through two flights of step-one running in its eastern side and the other on the northern side. The church still continues to hold prayer meetings, but its cloister has been transformed into a hospital.

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