The Feast of St. Francis Xavier commemorates the death of St. Francis Xavier, patron saint of Goa. Fondly called the Goincho Saib or the Lord of Goa, St. Xavier was a Spanish Jesuit missionary who preached Christianity in many parts of Asia. After achieving great success in Goa, St Xavier set sail for China but breathed his last at the Sancian Island, about 10-km from the mainland of China, on December 2, 1552.
has it that when the body of St. Xavier was transferred to Goa the
following year, the body was found as fresh as the day it was buried.
When news of this miracle reached the Vatican, the title of 'Saint' was
conferred on Xavier. His mausoleum was erected in the Basilica of Bom
Jesus church and the mortal remains were kept inside in a silver casket.
The Feast of St. Francis Xavier is held on December 3 every year at the
Bom Jesus church in Old Goa. One of the most prestigious Christian
festivals in Goa, the St. Xavier feast draws a large number of pilgrims
from different corners of the world who descend here to participate in
the morning mass. On this occasion the locality reverberates with a
festive ambience and the local vendors set up stalls selling a wide
variety of items.