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About us
About us
RCB Library
Other pages in RCB Library:

About Us

Find a Church

The Constitution

What We Believe

General Synod

Committees of the Synod

Bishops' Appeal Advisory Committee

Board for Social Responsibility (NI)

Board for Social Responsibility (RI)

Church of Ireland Marriage Council

Church of Ireland Youth Department

Church's Ministry of Healing

Commission on Ministry

Committee for Christian Unity

Council for Mission

Liturgical Advisory Committee

Standing Committee

Central Communications Board

Broadcasting Committee

Literature Committee

Church in Society

Priorities Fund

Working Group on Disability

Children's Ministry Working Group

General Synod Website

Representative Body

Allocations Committee

Audit Committee

Executive Committee

Investment Committee

Legal Advisory Committee

Library & Archives Committee

Property Committee

Stipends Committee

Central Offices


Office Services

Information Technology


Unit Trust Valuation Calculator


Property & Trusts

Synod Services & Communications

Press Office


Contact Directory

RCB Library

Archive of the Month

“Archives of the Month” – Archived


Location & Contacts

Opening Hours




Regulations for Readers of Archives and Manuscripts

Library News

Library Publications

Parish Register Series

Texts and Calendars series

Other publications

RCB Library Catalogue

Online Parish Records

Anglican Record Project

Bunclody Union (Ferns)

Theological Institute

Clergy Pensions

Links with other Churches

Bishops' Appeal

Bishops' Appeal Website

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History of the RCB Library

The Library was founded in 1931 when the Church of Ireland accepted from Miss Rosamond Stephen a gift of the Library of the Irish Guild of Witness which Miss Stephen had founded in Dublin in 1918 to promote the Irish dimension of the Church of Ireland. This collection of books on the bible and theology numbered some 5,000 titles in 1931 and to these Miss Stephen added books from her father, the judge, Sir James Fitzjames Stephen, and her grandfather, Sir James Stephen, who had been professor of modern history in the University of Cambridge. The new Library was given rooms in the offices of  the Representative Church Body in 52 St Stephen’s Green, Dublin where it was developed as a reference and lending library for the clergy and laity of the Church of Ireland.

In 1969 the Library was moved to the site of the Divinity Hostel (now the Church of Ireland Theological Institute) in Churchtown. There it has been developed to meet the particular needs of those in training for the ministry. However, it continues to serve as a reference and lending library for the Church of Ireland and today is the principal resource for those who require information about any aspect of the Church of Ireland.

In the late 1930s the Library became the focus for the work of the Ecclesiastical Records Committee of the General Synod which, among other tasks, provided a home for stray church records. This function was sporadic until the 1960s when amalgamations of parishes and dioceses led to a marked increase in archival activity. The Library’s archival role was formalised in 1981 with the appointment of an archivist and the provision of purpose built storage accommodation for church records. The Library is now the place of first resort for information on and access to Church of Ireland archives and manuscripts.

Miss Rosmund Emily Stephen
Miss Rosamond Emily Stephen