The church’s history dates back to 1503. I t owes its origin
to the Portuguese Franciscan Friars, who reached Kochi along
with Pedro Alvarez Cabral. The church, made of wood and mud,
was situated in the middle of the fort that had been constructed
by the Portuguese with the permission of the erstwhile Cochin
Raja and it was dedicated to S t Bartholomew. The church
was reconstructed and reopened in 1516 and dedicated
to the patron saint of Portugal, Santo Antonio, hence named
Santo Antonio Church.