The Church of Our Lady of Mercy, built in 1587, is located on Trg Slobode Square, which also features a 17th century bell tower and the city ethnographic museum.
The year 1587 was carved at the outside jamb of the left side door to the church, as a memorial to the completion of works. In front of the church, there is a picturesque »fresco« from 1590 and a belfry with a clock and a 22 high passageway.
The miraculous creation of the Church of Our Lady of Mercy
A miraculous event defined the destiny of the church of St. Mary of Mercy on her construction outside the town walls. The old records say that a rich man named Paolo Razizze (Pavle Račica) from Buje, who had a vision of Our Lady in his dream in 1497, set out on a journey to a workshop in Venice in order to bring her statue to Buje.
Upon his return, it was already dark and the town gates were already closed. After he spent the night in front of the town, he was not able to move the statue from the spot in the morning, even with the help of the inhabitants. It was a sign to build a shrine to Our Lady outside the city walls. The news about the miraculous event spread among the worshippers from the surrounding areas and it became a pilgrimage spot. Today, the church is located at the central town square (Trg slobode).
The church’s valuable works of art
With apparently simple but harmonious architecture, it contains invaluable artworks in its interior.
Art historians claim that the sculpture of Our Lady of Mercy is one of the most beautiful wooden sculptures in Istria. It is the work of the Venetian workshops of Paolo Campsa and Giovanni de Malines. The statue is placed between statues of St. Joseph and St. Servulus, and is closed behind a gold-plated metal grating of exceptional value.