Saint Waudru Mons

The Sainte-Waudru collegiate church in Mons is a Catholic religious building in Brabant Gothic style dedicated to Saint Waudru, the patron saint of the city of Mons. Begun in 1450, the work stopped in 1691, without the church ever being completed. It is classified as part of the classified immovable cultural heritage of Wallonia.

St waudru

The Collegiate Church of Sainte-Waudru Mons is a Brabantine Gothic-style church. It was built on the initiative of the canonesses and offers you many treasures: 

  • Jacques Du Broeucq, Le Michel-Ange du Nord.
  • The stained-glass windows: Armorial stained-glass windows from the 16th century.
  • Le car d’Or: The 18th-century processional carriages.
  • The great pipe organs: A masterfully restored instrument.
  • Chapels: 29 decorated chapels.
  • The Treasure: one of the most beautiful collections of religious jewellery in Belgium.

The interior of Sainte-Waudru:

Cross the threshold of the collegiate church and enter another world. All is harmony, elegance, balance and verticality. The incredibly light structures rub shoulders with the limits of the impossible.

The overall impression is both homogeneity and with harmonic rigour. 140 years separated the choir started in 1450 and the last bay of the nave with blind arches, connecting with the tower.

The structure has remained Gothic throughout. The project managers and successive architects acted with modesty. However, they did not have the audacity to mark their passage with a work of their own. They followed step by step the plan of the fifteenth century and, through the Renaissance, Baroque period and Classicism, they persevered in the Gothic method. They have respected the knowledge of the medieval master who had established the plan and the elevation.

Sainte Waudru de Mons

The unique collection of emblazoned stained glass.

The “imperial stained-glass windows”, donated by Emperor Maximilian I, constitute an exceptional collection of 16th century. These stained glass windows are made with great homogeneity are among the oldest preserved in Belgium.

Those of the collegiate church, whatever their style, all interfere with the architecture, enliven it with their multicoloured and qualify the interior volume of the building.
In addition, those of the transept and the high windows of the choir are valued for their aesthetic and historical value. They mainly illustrate the cycle of the Virgin, from the Annunciation to the Assumption. They also portray their illustrious sponsors, represented with their coat of arms: Mary of Burgundy, Maximilian I and Philippe le Beau. The windows date almost all from the first half of the XVIth century and are due to the Mons family of Eve and Nicolas Rombauts, glass painters in the service of Charles Quint.

Jacques Du Broeucq, Le Michel-Ange du Nord.

Jacques Du Broeucq, “master artist” of Charles-Quint was an architect, sculptor and engineer of the Renaissance. The collegiate church has the privilege of conserving most of what remains of its work. Let yourself be surprised by the lightness and the lively character that it gives to this soft stone and so close to human flesh that is alabaster. You will be overwhelmed by the expression of its characters, by the perception of the movement and the shapes of the bodies under the fabrics.

Le Car d’Or.

The collegiate church also houses the Car d´Or, a rare example of an 18th-century processional chariot that still carries the shrine of Saint Waudru every year during the “Car d´Or Procession”, one of the most beautiful processions in the country.

Exceptional pipe organs.

The collegiate church contains a gem of great value: pipe organs from 1694. They were originally built for the abbey of Cambron-Casteau. Restored in 2018, come and visit them or listen to them during services. It is the most complete instrument in Wallonia and the largest 17th-century buffet in Belgium.