While Cochin's St. Francis Church managed to survive through the different conquests of the city, its Roman Catholic cathedral was not as fortunate. Construction of the earliest church on the site began in 1505 and it was elevated to a cathedral in 1555. The Dutch spared it (along with St. Francis Church), but when the British assumed control of Cochin, they demolished the building. The current basilica, built in a Gothic style, was consecrated in 1905. It stands as a remarkable reminder of the persistence of Christianity (if not individual buildings dedicated to it) in Kerala, where, unusually for India, nearly one-fifth of the population is Christian.