Hospital chapel

Built by the Jesuits and used as a place of worship for Protestants, this 19th century chapel has been refurbished and welcomes the patients of la Broye hospital.

Outlawed in the 18th century and re-established the following century, the order of Jesuits decided to establish its noviciate in Estavayer-le-Lac in 1826. The members of the order purchased the buildings to create a boarding school, and built a church dedicated to Saint Vincent. When the Jesuits were expelled from Switzerland in 1847 their assets returned to the State of Fribourg, which attempted to dispose of them. It was proposed to allocate the church of the noviciate to the new Protestant parish. Faced with considerable opposition, the State sold the premises to a lawyer from Neuchâtel, who made them available to the Protestant community. Evangelical worship took place there from 1854 to 1937. All the buildings then became the property of the Association des Communes Broyardes, which created the Hospice of La Broye as early as 1870.

The chapel is home to the Jesuits' organ, built in Aarau in 1808. A painting depicts a view of St Peter's in Rome. The pews in the nave, the liturgical furnishings and a solid wood calvary come from the Collège Saint-Michel in Fribourg. The dome is adorned with frescoes of the monogram IHS, the coat of arms of the order of Jesuits, in a sky filled with cherubs.

The chapel was restored in the 1970s. Two doors leading to the hospital were opened in the choir, allowing patients to access the chapel without going outside. In order to highlight the choir area, the organ was moved to the gallery and two statues – Saint John and Saint Mary – were moved to the sides.
The windows, dating from 1983, feature the stained glass of Théodore Stravinski (Rosa Mystica and Stella Matutina) and Bernard Viglino (Old and New Testament).

The 20th century restoration was financed by the hospital chaplain, who collected paper for recycling in the surrounding villages, and by a bequest from its director.




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