Church Review Notes: November 2012

Sunday Services
10.00 Eucharist, St Audoen, Cornmarket (free parking, Francis Street, on Sundays).
11.30 Eucharist, St Catherine & St James, Donore Avenue (Service of the Word Second and Fourth Sundays), and Sunday School, in term time.

At time of writing, the Archbishop has indicated his intention of Instituting the Vicar of the former St Patrick’s Cathedral Group of Parishes, as Rector of the new Parish of St Catherine and St James with St Audoen, at Service of the Word, 20.00, Tuesday 13 November, at St Catherine and St James’ Church.

Two teams of volunteers decorated both Churches for Harvest, and St Audoen’s was successful in attracting sponsorship for two windows from ‘Liberty Florists’ of Thomas St and Masseys Florists, also of Thomas St but moving to 125A Cork St. The Church remained open to the public until 24 Oct when the OPW Visitor Centre closed for the winter. Thanks to all those whose hands were busy making the Churches beautiful. Both Harvest celebrations were greatly enhanced by the presence of the Revd Trevor Gillian who addressed the congregation at St Audoen’s and then the children at St Catherine & St James with wit and wisdom, and held their attention with an apple and a knife and a few well-planned questions about little seeds and apple trees. Thanks also to those who prepared the hospitality which everyone enjoyed after service in the Transept.

Congratulations to Raffael Botas of Thomas St, now a boy in the choir of St Patrick’s Cathedral. He and his big sister Esther are pupils in St Patrick’s Cathedral Choir School, which is the National School next door to St Patrick’s Grammar School, one of 26 secondary schools under Protestant Management in the Republic. Both Schools have increased in size and in popularity in recent years.

An Act of Remembrance will be held in both Churches at the beginning of service on Remembrance Sunday 11 November. When the eleventh day of the eleventh month falls on a Sunday, it seems particularly poignant. The opus sectile War Memorial from St Peter’s Church Aungier St has been reassembled by stained glass artists and with another similarly colourful memorial to a Deaconess is lying on the floor of the Baptistry in St Catherine and St James’ Church, awaiting re-erection. I have recently seen historic photographs of air raid damage to the South Circular Road, houses and Churches and Synagogue. I had often heard of the damage done to North Strand but until I came here I didn’t know it was not the only incident of its kind. Oral tradition relates that a former Rector standing on the roof of the tower in troubled times was shot and injured.

St James’ Churchyard
The shooting of a man a stone’s throw from the Rectory one evening recently was a cause for great concern. Such a thing used to be rare. I was reminded that someone told me of a murdered man buried at the front of St James’ Church (the old Church, near the Brewery). I now find the grave marked and the epitaph. Does anyone know the background to the story?  I feel the man should not be forgotten.

In ever loving memory of Albert H A Armstrong who mortally wounded by an unknown hand died 20th February 1929 aged 23yrs.
“Father forgive them for they know not what they do”
Henry Armstrong father of the above died 18th September 1941 aged 66 years
Together with the Lord”
Also his mother Isobel Armstrong 11th August 1957 aged 82 years.

Clare McCutcheon of Bandon has succeeded in her research and has reported to the Vicar and to Andrew Whiteside, Archivist of St Patrick’s Hospital, with thanks for their help. ‘My great-great-grandmother, Harriet Jephson, died in St Patrick’s Hospital and was buried in St James’ Churchyard. We now have a location for Harriet’s grave which has a headstone with the inscription:

Harriet Jephson, widow of George Hastings Jephson, alias Colclough,
who departed this life the 2nd August 1857,
in the 36th year of her age.

 The website for Dublin graveyards in the care of Dublin City Council is: I was able to follow links to the online publication of the 1988 FAS map and listing of headstones:

St Patrick’s Hospital never had a Chapel. Does anyone know why? Andrew Whiteside tells me that more able patients attended the Chapel of Dr Steeven’s Hospital next door, as it were, on Steeven’s Lane, a fair linen cloth from which is now in the Vestry of the Parish Church.

People interested in St James Churchyard may like to know that much research and restoration was done there in the days of FÁS and the late Canon John Crawford, himself an accomplished historian. What has been published may be found in the RB Library, Braemor Park. The Churchyard has recently been conveyed into the care of Dublin City Council and the Parish – and indeed the public – has no access to it except through them. There is, or there was, a website, which the Council set up to allow local people to register an interest in the Churchyard when the Council took it over.

St Audoen within Newgate (or St Ewan within Newgate or St Ewin within Newgate) was a mediaeval church in the City of London standing on the corner of Newgate Street. It was first mentioned as Parochia sancti Audoeni in around 1220. In 1546, Henry VIII gave the church, along with St Nicholas Shambles and the dissolved priory of Christ Church, to the City corporation. A new parish called Christ Church was created out of St Audoen and St Nicholas, and St Audoen’s London was demolished in around 1583.

Mark Gardner