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The Church of Ireland

The Church of Ireland
News Briefing

For Saturday 1st December 2001

From: The RCB Library
Email: RCB Library

Restoration of Historic Organ

On Friday evening in Durrow parish church, Co. Laois, there will be a musical evening in support of the organ restoration fund. The Dean of Cashel, Dr Philip Knowles, will give an organ recital, there will be choral singing from Maggie Davis and the Cahir Children's Choir and from the Cashel Cathedral Singers. There will be opportunities also for the congregation to flex their vocal chords with seasonal hymns and carols and to then wind down with mulled wine and mince pies. On the face of it, a pleasant if unremarkable parish gathering, except that the instrument which is the object of the event is regarded as the most important historic pipe organ in Ireland.

The organ in St Fintan's Church, Durrow, was built by Samuel Green and is the only original instrument by Green in this country. The firm of Samuel Green built organs for St Petersburg, Buckingham Palace Chapel, Canterbury Cathedral, Westminster Abbey, the University Music School in Oxford, and Windsor Castle. The Durrow organ was originally presented to Trinity College, Dublin, by King George III in 1797, and Lord Ashbrook employed William Telford to bring the instrument to Durrow in 1842.

Durrow parish, which is part of a group of parishes based on Abbeyleix where the rector is Canon Patrick Harvey, has been working with the Heritage Council to restore the organ to its former glory.

Tomorrow (Sunday) morning the Advent Sunday preacher in the Chapel of Trinity College, Dublin, will be Dr Michael Jackson, Dean of Cork and Bishop-Elect of Clogher. In the evening there will be candlelight processions in Dublin in both Christ Church and St Patrick's cathedrals. Following the Advent Carol Service in St Mary's Cathedral, Limerick, the Bishop of Limerick, the Rt Revd Michael Mayes, will launch a new organization called the Companions of St Mary's Cathedral Music. The Companions will be dedicated to the promotion and development of liturgical music in the cathedral. Already they have mounted a permanent exhibition on the history of music in St Mary's and have raised money to pay for lay clerks and music scholarships for young choristers.

The Bishop of Kilmore, Elphin and Ardagh, the Rt Revd Ken Clarke, will be the preacher a a Service of Thanksgiving in Loch Gowna parish church during which a new parish history, by Niall Sloane, will be launched.

In St Multose' Church, Kinsale, as part of the 400th anniversary celebrations of the Battle of Kinsale, there will be a recital by Madrigal 75, the Cork based chamber choir, who will perform music for Advent and Christmas from the time of the battle. This will be followed by "Kinsale 1601", a suite by Pat Crowley and Desmond O'Grady, which was commissioned by the Minister of Arts and Culture.

On Wednesday the Archbishop of Armagh, Dr Robin Eames, will be in London where he will address the Central Trustees of the Mothers' Union in Mary Sumner House.

Thursday is St Nicholas' Day and at Evensong in Trinity College, Dublin, the Revd Rupert Moreton, formerly curate in the Christ Church Cathedral, Dublin, group of parishes and now chaplain in Helsinki, will present gifts to the Chapel. The Chapel Choir visited the Anglican church in Helsinki as part of its summer Porvoo Communion tour.

The Revd Bruce Pierce, Chaplain of Tallaght Hospital, has begun an eighteen month sabbatical in Amsterdam and Toronto where he will continue his studies in hospital chaplaincy. The Archbishop of Dublin, Dr Walton Empey, has appointed the Revd Anne Taylor, curate of Rathfarnham, as a full time replacement.

Church of Ireland Notes appear in the Irish Times whose web site may be found at

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