Our Lady of Piety Church, Divar Island
The Church of Our Lady of Compassion is located in the village of Piedade; in Divar island. It is also known as The Our Lady of Piety Church, Divar, or ‘Nossa Senhora da Piedade Igreja em Divar, Goa’ in Portuguese. This church was originally a Chapel in 1541, and was rebuilt in 1625 and converted into the Our Lady of Piety Church, Divar, Goa. Nossa Senhora de Piedade (Our Lady of Piety) is the patron saint of this church. The construction of the present church began in 1700 and was completed in 1724.The church which was designed by a Goan priest . The Feast of this church is celebrated on the 2nd Sunday of May every year.
The Our Lady of Piety church lies atop a hill offering panoramic views and is situated at the site of an ancient Hindu temple which is believed to have been destroyed in the late 15th century by the Muslims. To the south side of the church, remnants of the Kadamba era are still present. In a tiny walled cemetery there is a chapel enclosed which is believed to have been converted from a former Hindu shrine.
Like all churches in Goa, this church too has a story to tell from its history books. This is how it goes,a captain of a sinking ship vowed that he would donate the ship’s bell to the first village or town that his vessel touched, if he were to survive his fate.He safely touched the island of Divar. Living upto his promise, he donated the bell to the church of Divar. But every time the bell was struck, it shattered the windows of the church and the houses in the vicinity, and so the bell was exchanged with that of the Se Cathedral.