La Piguière, village on the Causse de Sauveterre between Le Massegros and La Canourgue. Fully restored 19th-century church.La Piguière, village on the Causse de Sauveterre between Le Massegros and La Canourgue. Fully restored 19th-century church.
©La Piguière, village on the Causse de Sauveterre between Le Massegros and La Canourgue. Fully restored 19th-century church.

Churches of the Grands Causses

... to discover an exceptional religious heritage!
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Come and discover the religious heritage of the Grands Causses, a rural territory with a culture of faith marked by the presence of various religious buildings decorating these vast plateaux.

The small heritage of the Grands Causses

As is often the case in the Grands Causses, religion has bequeathed us traces of the past, through an exceptional religious heritage: how can we fail to mention thechurch of Saint-Martin in La Capelle, listed as a historic monument?

There are many modest churches whose bells still ring out across the countryside: the church of La Piguière, of Hures-la-Parade, Saint-Pierre in Saint-Pierre-les-Tripiers … of all ages and styles, they watch over the villages and hamlets of the Causses from the top of their steeples.


La Piguière church

The church at La Piguière was built in 1867 on the initiative ofAbbé Albaret. Its recent construction can be explained by the building fever of the 19th century, when several hundred churches were built all over France. In 1968, the parish was abolished, a consequence of the rural exodus that affected all French countryside.

The church is built of limestone, with a lauze roof. The façade is a porch bell tower with a polygonal spire. The interior features a barrel-vaulted nave with stencilled arabesque decorations and a choir featuring a starry sky motif.

Stop by to admire the paintings through the ever-open gates, or come and discover it on one of the many guided tours organized by members of the association throughout the year.


Saint Martin de La Capelle church

Situated in the heart of the Causse de Sauveterre, the church of Saint Martin de La Capelle dates back to the 12th century and was attached to the collegiate church of Saint Martin de La Canourgue, founded at the same time. The small hamlet on the road between Sainte-Énimie and La Canourgue has been a busy crossing point since the Middle Ages, which explains its construction.

The church is a Romanesque building, listed as a historic monument since 1932, with a single barrel-vaulted nave. The church has undergone several changes, notably the addition of a south-facing chapel and two 13th-century buttresses, two 17th-century side chapels and a 19th-century bell tower.

The building is not open to visitors, but you can still admire the exterior and, for the curious, enter the small cemetery adjoining the church.


Saint-Pierre parish church in Saint-Pierre-des-Tripiers

Situated on the Causse Méjean, high above the junction of the Tarn and Jontegorges, this Romanesque priory is part of the Rozier monastery, and was built over several construction phases between the 12th and 13th centuries. The church was listed as a historic monument in 1987.

The facade was damaged during the Wars of Religion in the 16th century, and was restored in the mid-17th century with the addition of a Renaissance portal.


Saint Privat church in Hure la Parade

Lost in the middle of the Causse Méjean, the church of Saint Privat is a neo-Romanesque edifice attached to the priory, whose recent bell tower in no way detracts from the old-world charm of this small church with its 3-bay nave and central dome overlooking a circular altar of simple beauty.


The Buffre cross

Not far from the Saint-Privat church, a little further north in the commune of Hure-La-Parade, lies the Buffre cross. This calvary, carved from local limestone, has been enthroned on the Causse Méjean for over 800 years now, with the year 1161 engraved on it. The cross is ornately carved and features a small stoup where people traditionally dipped a bunch of boxwood to bless their flocks or ensure their safety on the road.

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