Merrion Church Remembers

Picture supplied courtesy of Brian Davitt.

Picture supplied courtesy of Brian Davitt.

A church is made up of its people, and Merrion Church recently commemorated the passing, in London last September, of one of its servants whose presence therein predated the building itself.

Kevin Quinn worked as Sacristan there from 1940 to 1954 and although he spent most of his subsequent life in England, the Parish of Merrion remained part of his being, as is evident through the memory of those whose lives he embellished. One such person is Charles Lysaght, who paid tribute to him after a mass on 6th Dec last, at the very parish that was never far from Quinn’s heart.

The increase in the Catholic population during the 1920s prompted plans to build a new Church. A temporary church, popularly known as the Tin Church (pictured) because of its tin roof, was where Quinn first acted as sacristan in the 1940s. The building work on the permanent church was delayed considerably due to WW2. Finally, in December 1953, Archbishop John Charles McQuaid officially opened the church we see today.

Whether you are religious or not, Merrion Church is a familiar landmark in the locality, with its Basilica-style architecture and Dublin Granite façade. Seeing the tin church, readers might be interested to know about the humble beginnings of a building that has acted as the venue to mark countless births, deaths and marriages within the Merrion community.

By Maria Shields O’Kelly