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Festal Choral Evensong honours Dublin’s patron saint

Festal Choral Evensong honours Dublin’s patron saint
Those who participated in the service in honour of Laurence O’Toole with Archbishop Michael Jackson and Dean Dermot Dunne. Photo: David Wynne.

A Service of Festal Choral Evensong in honour of Laurence O’Toole, patron saint of Dublin, took place in Christ Church Cathedral yesterday evening (Thursday November 11).

Archbishop Michael Jackson presided with the Dean, the Very Revd Dermot Dunne. The service was sung by the Cathedral Choir.

Long associated with Christ Church through the presence in the Chapel of St Laud of the reliquary of the heart of the saint, public interest in him was stimulated by the theft of the heart in 2012 and its subsequent recovery in 2018. A new exhibition area in the north transept is now the venue for the display of the heart. A chapel in the south transept is dedicated to St Laurence and he is commemorated in a stained glass window in the baptistry.

Laurence O’Toole, Abbot of Glendalough, became Archbishop of Dublin in 1162 and was archbishop until his death at the Augustinian monastery in Eu in  Normandy in 1180. He is credited with introducing the Augustinians to Christ Church which had previously been a Benedictine foundation. He was buried at Eu but tradition has it that his heart was brought back to Dublin. Some years ago the Friends of Christ Church visited Eu and presented a Dublin flag to hang over his grave. He was canonized by Pope Honorius III in 1225.


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