Thank you, Pope Benedict!
Monday, 14 September 2015
Saturday, 5 September 2015
St. Patrick's Church, is set strikingly on a hill overlooking the scenic and historic coastal town of Wicklow. Although the area has been populated for thousands of years, the town itself was settled by the vikings about the year 800. To that extent, it is older even than Dublin City. The Irish name Cill Mhantáin, or Church of the toothless, is replaced by the Norse Vikló, or harbour of the meadow.
The town would have found itself in the Gaelic Diocese of Glendalough, which extended across the whole of what is now the Archdiocese of Dublin. Viking Dublin did not have a Bishop until Donatus was consecrated in 1038. At the Synod of Rathbreasail in 1118, Dublin is not mentioned. At the Synod of Kells in 1152, the Diocese of Glendalough was divided, giving the northern portion of its territory to Dublin, which also received a Metropolitan pallium. Gregory became the first Archbishop of Dublin and was succeeded by St. Laurence O'Toole. In 1185, King John decreed the union of Glendalough to Dublin but it wasn't sanctioned by the Pope until 1216.
In the valley between the Catholic Church and Anglican church and at the medieval town gate lie the ruins of a Franciscan Abbey, built about the year 1265. Only elements of the south transept and nave are visible today.
As already noted in the post on the pilgrimage to Bray, the facade of the Church is remarkably similar to that of the original facade of the Church of the Holy Redeemer, Bray, and to other Churches by W.H. Byrne. It was completed about 1840 to an unknown architect's design, where there is a gap in Byrne's list of works. Therefore, it may cautiously be attributed to him.
Members and friends of St. Laurence's Catholic Heritage Association made a pilgrimage there on Saturday, 22nd August, including a Mass celebrated by a Priest of the Diocese.