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Church of Ireland Notes from ‘The Irish Times’

Parish records and the RCB Library

Although it did not appoint an archivist until 1981 the Church of Ireland has been providing for homeless church records since the 1920s, initially in its offices in St Stephen’s Green and since 1969 in the purpose–built RCB Library in Braemor Park The Library currently holds 1,114 collections of parish records, mostly dating from the late 17th century onwards, which are regularly used by historians, genealogists, architects. lawyers and curious members of the public, as well as by the Church’s administration. Detailed lists of the collections held by the Library, as well as information on parish registers throughout the island, are available online at http://bit.ly/2JBSJ46

The first parish records, those from Shrule, Co. Longford, came into the custody of Representative Church Body in 1926 and additional records were transferred from local custody in 1985 and again during 2012–2013. In this month’s Archive of the Month,’ Dr Miriam Moffitt considers how this collection reflects the life of the parish and its community. As well as focusing on the content of the Shrule parish record collection, which includes baptismal, marriage and burial registers, vestry minutes, preachers’ books, and sundry other materials, she supplements this with detail on the additional information available from such sources – diocesan visitations, magazines, clerical succession lists – which document the lives of clergy who served in the parish, and the rich and now searchable Church of Ireland Gazette, digitized and available up to 1936 at www.ireland.anglican.org/about/rcb–library/coi–gazette–digitization

The RCB Library continues to encourage local clergy and others to transfer non–current records from their parish custody to the Library where they can be safely stored, catalogued and made readily accessible to the growing numbers of researchers, both at home and from abroad, who expect to be able to consult them in comfortable surroundings. Shrule, parish no. 1, is profiled at www.ireland.anglican.org/library/archive

Tomorrow (Sunday) morning at 11.10am RTÉ 1 will broadcast a Service of Music, Readings and Prayers led by the Peregryne vocal ensemble and instrumentalists directed by Dr Stuart Kinsella. The music will include the 14th century Irish ‘Angelus ad Virginem’, ‘Osculetur me’ by Lassus, ‘Wir glauben all’ an einen Gott’ by Schütz, a Daniel Purcell ‘Nunc dimittis’ a Thomas Roseingrave ‘Gloria’, an ‘Ave Maria’ by Haydn, Vinea mea from Poulenc’s ‘Quatre motets pour un temps de penitence’ and Tristis est anima mea from’ Seven Passion Texts, no. 1’ by Wolfgang Rihm.

A service of Rededication and Thanksgiving will be held at 7.00pm in Holy Trinity church, Errislannan, Co. Galway. The church was maliciously damaged last October and work is nearing completion to restore it to its former glory. The service will bring together members of the local Church of Ireland Omey group of parishes, and the Friends of St Flannan’s who have worked tirelessly to restore the church. Incredible support from across the whole country means that this sacred place is once again able to provide a treasured place of tranquillity on this peninsula on the western seaboard. The address will be given by the Church of Ireland Bishop of Tuam, Killala and Achonry, the Rt Revd Patrick Rooke, and the Catholic Archbishop of Tuam, the Most Revd Michael Neary, will respond.

On Wednesday the lunchtime recital in St Mary’s cathedral, Limerick, will be given by
Andrea Banciu (viola), Adrian Mantu (cello) and Aileen Cahill (piano). Andrea Banciu and Aileen Cahill will play again in Dublin at the ‘Summer Music at Sandford’ series of recitals in Sandford parish church, Ranelagh, on Friday at 1.10pm.