6940 Barvaux-sur-Ourthe (Durbuy)
01 January - 31 December
Wed 9.00 - 12.00
Fri 16.30 - 18.30
Sun 10.30 - 12.00 • 17.30 - 18.30
This is the piece to which the Barvautois are most attached. And for good reason, this 1.84 m high Christ was fished out of the Ourthe at the height of Tilff, several kilometres from the village. The "Sans-Culottes" had in fact taken the statue, placed at the time in the porch of the church, to throw it into the river. Dated hypothetically around 1700, it is attributed, without certainty, to the Mosane school.
The triptych by the contemporary artist Jean-Pol Désirotte, known as Desiro, a native of Barvaux, illustrates on one of its sides the famous story of the "Christ of the Boatmen". Until the 19th century, many Barvautois lived from the waterways. They ensured the transport of goods between Barvaux and Liège. Some of them saw a steep arm emerging from the water. Believing at first to have rescued a drowned man, they then recognised Christ from their church, which they triumphantly brought back to the village.
Above the main entrance door there is a commemorative inscription: "pie IesV, DVLCI CorDI tVo aeDIfICata fVI". It has a chronogram: adding the Roman numerals together gives the number 1876, which corresponds to the end of the construction of the church.
This statue of the Virgin holding the body of Christ in her lap dates from 1520-1530, as is the statue of Christ on Calvary or Christ in the Bonds. Both are well representative of the techniques and know-how of the Mosan school.
For a long time, the bell tower of the church of Barvaux contained only 2 bells. It was a generous donor who financed the casting of these bells to obtain 3 new ones. To everyone's surprise, it was not 3 but 4 bells that were delivered in 1889. Still active, they continue to punctuate the days of the Barvautois. The biggest one gives the F, the 3 others give the G, the A and the C.