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The Abbey Church in Parnell Square is more widely known as Findlater's Church in honour of its benefactor, Alexander Findlater. The wine merchant donated money to purchase the land and build the Gothic-style, Presbyterian Church, which opened in 1864.
In the 1860s the growth of the Prebsyterian congregation and a substantial increase in rent on the Mary’s Abbey property made it desirable for the congregation to seek new premises. By the great generosity of Alexander Findlater, the present site in Rutland Square, now Parnell Square, was bought and a church building was erected at a cost of £14,000. A large memorial window containing texts from the Beatitudes, on an ornamental background, was erected to him by the grateful congregation. His portrait hangs in the small tower. The family still run a successful wine-distributing business in Ireland.
Designed in the early English style by Andrew Heiton of Perth, it is built of Dalkey granite and dressed with Portland stone. Its lofty, slender spire stands 55m high over Parnell Square. Inside there is a great sense of space and light. The organ is one of the largest in Dublin with over 2,000 pipes. It takes a central position rising up behind the chancel and communion table, to reach the rose window. The large oak pulpit, on the left, reflects the importance of preaching and scripture in the Presbyterian tradition.
James Joyce refers to Findlater’s Church in two of his works.
The Abbey Church is still in use today and a vibrant congregation holds service at 11am on Sunday mornings.
The Church is opposite the Castle Hotel.
The Castle Hotel, Gardiner Row/Great Denmark St, Dublin 1, Ireland Tel: +353(0)1 874 6949 firstname.lastname@example.org
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