Vailankanni is one of the most visited pilgrim centres in India. It is a town situated on the shores of Bay of Bengal. This renowned shrine Basilica of our Lady of health draws pilgrims from all over the world. Not only Christians but also the people of other faiths come to this Church to pray at the shrine of "Our lady of health".Knowing the importance of this town the Pope in the Vatican city has declared Vailankanni as a "Holy city". This Roman Catholic Church has an extended Basilica, which has two floors where one can find the statue of Jesus Christ. The Gothic style of architecture is a unique feature of the Church. The church itself is an imposing building with inspiring architecture. While the buildings have been painted white roof of the church is made by the tiles with striking red in contrast to the colour of the walls. The environment around the shrine is spick and span. Radiating rays of hope and piety.
There is also a shrine of "our lady of sorrow" where in the sorrowing Mother is depicted carrying infant Jesus in her hand. The museum is situated opposite to the Basilica has a very rich variety of exhibits. The precious offerings made by the devotees are on display here. Biblical incidents are depicted on both sidewalls Timings 6.30am to 8.00pm. Festivals are celebrated here with all pomp and gaiety every year on August 29th the feast of our lady commences with the hoisting. Of the flag the 10th day ends on the 8th September after the dismounting of the flag The pilgrims who come here also follow the Hindu tradition of tonsuring their heads as an offering and also perform ear-boring ceremony, This is a religious centre where Hindus, Muslims and Christian from all over the India congregate in large numbers and worship in harmony.
Vallankanni where the Shrine Basilica of Our Lady of Health gloriously stands, is situated on the East Coast 10 kms to the south of Nagapattinam which is 350 kms to the South of Chennai the Capital of TamilNadu, India.
The history behind the global fame of Our Lady of Health, is founded on three events that took place intermittently since the 16th Century at Vailankanni.