Delémont, Notre-Dame du Vorbourg. Foto/Photo: TES.

Notre-Dame du Vorbourg

The oldest Maria sanctuary (12th century) in the canton of Jura is located in the valley of Delsberg (Delémont), situated on a rock at the foot of the river Birs, which flows into the Rhine near Basel.

The chapel was originally part of Telsberg Castle. The earthquake of 1356 destroyed the castle. The chapel was largely spared.

After the Thirty Years’ War (1618-1648), the chapel was extended to the rock on which the tower of St. Anne stands. At the same time, the statue of Notre Dame du Vorbourg was erected.

On 7 April 1658, Mary became the chapel’s patron saint.  The votive images from 1671 are among the most remarkable in Switzerland.

During the Second World War, the pastor of Delsberg vowed to establish a permanent priesthood in the chapel if the Nazis did not occupy Switzerland. Until 2018, this service was carried out by the Benedictines. The current observer is a priest of the diocese.

(Source and further information: