Churches of varying sizes can be seen throughout the islands of Seychelles. They are usually well looked after, often with small manicured gardens. It is, therefore, quite surprising to find an abandoned church in the outskirts of Victoria—even more so, considering that this church is nested in a populated area, next to a school, private houses, and a busy roundabout.
The roots of Christianity in Seychelles can be traced back to 1756, when France claimed the islands. As Seychelles had no Indigenous population, when European settlers arrived aboard the ship Thélemaque in 1770, Captain Leblanc Lecore brought 15 French men, eight enslaved Africans, and five Indians to the island now known as Sainte Anne. After decades of French rule, Seychelles came under British rule in 1810. It was not until 1976 that Seychelles became an independent country.
Christianity remains the most widespread religion in Seychelles, and Roman Catholicism represents the predominant form. Located in Roche Caïman on the island of Mahé, this structure is completely roofless and exposed to the elements. The vegetation is cut back from time to time, but it is clearly visible that medium-size tree trunks have grown through the windows. The vegetation has almost completely reclaimed the walls demarcating the apse and the three lancets. Some moss covers the ground, and weeds creep in between the cracks, but the slabs of rock used to tile the floor are still recognizable.
There are neither fences nor custodians on site. The building is open to whoever happens to be passing by.