Mumbai’s diverse cultural heritage includes several Christian churches associated with the city’s East Indian community and with the legacy of Portuguese colonial rule between 1534 and 1739. This study addresses one such site in the village of Mandapeshwar, which developed from an eighth-century CE Hindu rock-cut cave temple and was transformed during the period of Portuguese rule into a center of Franciscan missionary activity, including through the creation of a Sacro Monte, or series of pilgrimage stations. By reconstructing the activities of the early Franciscan missionaries on Shashti Island north of Mumbai, this investigation reveals that the Sacro Monte functioned as a Marian devotional shrine, with a crowning chapel dedicated to the Holy Spirit. The Sacro Monte, with its grottoes, represents a unique synthesis of rock-cut Hindu cave temples and Christian hermitic traditions.

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