Church Review Notes August 2014

The Parish of Saint Catherine & Saint James with Saint Audoen, Dublin

Canon Mark Gardner (Editor) Tel: 01 454 2274 Mobile 087 266 0228

The Revd Martha Waller (Curate-Assistant) Tel: 01 868 1655


Review Distribution: Doris Brooks Tel: 01 453 0887


Service times every Sunday

10.00 Eucharist, St Audoen, Cornmarket. (Parking in Francis Street is free on Sundays).

The Visitor Centre is kept open to the public free of charge by the Office of Public Works until about 17.30 daily.

11.30 Eucharist, St Catherine & St James, Donore Avenue. (Service of the Word, Second and Fourth Sundays in August)

Songs of Praise and Parish Barbeque

On the First Sunday after Trinity, 22 June, we sang Songs of Praise at St Catherine & St James’ Church.  The theme of the service was ‘The Life of Faith’ and hymns that had been chosen by members of the congregation and the children of Sunday School were introduced by Des Cox, Organist, with some information about each hymn and why it was meaningful to the person who chose it.

A participant in the recent Pipeworks Organ Festival, Agniezka Tarnawska, played ‘about five minutes of Bach’ during the service.  She had practiced for her performance in the Church and so we warmly welcomed her to Songs of Praise.  During the service a member of 35th Dublin Donore Avenue St. Teresa’s Scout Group was interviewed briefly by Canon Mark Gardner and her responses were very confidentially given including some humour also!

After the service we all enjoyed the Parish barbeque in the Rectory garden and Church grounds.  The barbeque was cooked by a group of the Scouts who had come especially from a large gathering at Larch Hill that weekend.  Many thanks to John Lawlor, Leader of 35th Dublin Scout Group for his continuing support of our parish activities, and to Des Cox for providing the bouncy castle.

Martha Waller


We miss the Sunday School children very much during the holidays. One year, we had a music workshop for children, in some weeks of Summer. This year, at time of writing, we are planning a Child-minding group during the 11.30 service at St Catherine & St James, and are most grateful to members of the Honer, Walshe and Botas families for being prepared to provide this valuable facility in the Transept of the Parish Church. The sound of children’s voices floating through the partition into the Church is very welcome indeed.

St Audoen’s Church

Vaughan Electrical and Rainey’s Steeplejacks have been busy. The electrical engineers have been installing under-seat heating, designed to heat the people more or less individually, though not the Church as a whole. A sound system is also being provided where there was none before. At the same time, Dave Hine of Smith of Derby has been installing and regulating a new master clock to drive the external dial which came from St Peter’s Aungier St. The former master clock, an early twentieth century German clock, both electrical and mechanical, is also being lovingly resrestored by Dee Perrem of Perrem Hardware, and will be returned to the Churchwardens’ Vestry. Dee has also provided new brass handles for the drwaers of the safe there.

St Catherine’s National School

William Doyle of the probation service has brought some men, doing community service, to paint the interior of the School during the holiday period. Some readers of the Review will remember, as I do, Bertie Doyle of St Werburgh’s, very active in ministry as a Lay Reader when the Christ Church Group came into being in the late nineteen seventies. We are very grateful to William, his son, for this initiative. The School is twice the size it was when it was enlarged less than ten years ago, and we are contemplating prefabs in the yard, to accommodate next year’s intake in September. It’s a tribute to the staff that the School is so popular and so highly regarded.

WA Macourt

When I was appointed to St Patrick’s Ballymacarret, in downtown East Belfast, I was one of two Curates. The other was Andrew Stewart, who son Willie was for some time in charge of CORE, City Outreach through Renewal and Evangelism, originally in St Werburgh’s and now in St Catherine’s Thomas St. Victor Stacey was at that time in the next Church, St Martin’s, and there was another Church nearby. That was in 1983. Now, all three Churches have only one clergyman between them, an indication of the shift of population out of Belfast. How glad I am that there is a trend in the opposite direction in this part of Dublin.

I learn with regret of the death of William Albany Macourt, aged over ninety, who appointed me, and I remember well his steady ministry in turbulent times, and the kindness of the late Ésme Macourt to one of many Curates the Parish had in his years as Vicar, more than one called Mark! He greatly valued his membership of the Chapter of St Patrick’s Cathedral. Their son Malcolm Macourt, whose civil partnership with the Revd Christopher Wardale was one of the first, has done much research into the statistics of more than one recent census. This reveals that the population of the Church of Ireland in the Republic has grown, but that there is no room for complacency.

Representative Church Body

In addition to providing a Library, recently praised in the press for its work in reconstructing archives and family trees, the RCB looks after the funds that we rely on. Among many charitable funds existing in this Parish a new one has come to light, the James Pepper Bequest, for ‘Coal and fuel for the Protestant Poor of the Parish of St Peter.’ Payment will be made immediately, I am told, of the total annual distribution, of €7.76. I do wish there was some easy way to amalgamate all these old funds, but no doubt James Pepper wished his name to be remembered for many generations.

Mark Gardner