An Episcopal charter indicates that a small church already existed prior to 1121 in Sint-Martens-Latem. From the original Romanesque shape one supposes that this small old church was built with stone from Tournai As the church is located on the banks of the Lys, the limestone from Tournai could be easily brought in along the Schelde and the Lys.
In 1771 the church was changed fundamentally. It was lengthened by a half and the transepts and the arch over the nave/transept crossing were enlarged. The rickety tower, which threatened to collapse, was demolished and replaced by the present tower. The last significant transformation took place in the 19th century and gave the church its current appearance: a Neo-Gothic hall with three equally high naves. The ancient building has been preserved in the choir and the transept. The tombs of the painter Albijn Van den Abeele (1835-1918) and the sculptor baron George Minne (1866-1941) can be found in the graveyard.
Inside one is struck by the 15th century woodcarvings of the high altar. They depict the Visitation of Mary and her cousin Elisabeth.
The pulpit and the confessional are the 18th century Rococo works of Jacobus Martens from Ghent but contemporary art is also present in the stained glass windows and the paintings. There is one by Gustav Van de Woesijne with a canvas showing Saint Dominique receiving the rosary from the hands of the Virgin Mary (1900).