Wednesday, October 30, 2013


Above is from a photo of a card showing the interior of Holy Trinity (the Father Mathew Memorial Church) as it was sometime in the late nineteenth or, more likely, early twentieth centuries.  The altar was not marble  but plaster.  One of the friars told me that the workmen at one point discovered some of the angels still behind the plasterboard that lines the rear walls of the church.  As we are in the middle of Cork, right on the Lee we get a lot of damp and it did quite a bit of damage over the years.

Below is how it looks today.

Thursday, October 24, 2013


After our Provincial Chapter I got an instruction to move to Cork.  My  new community is Holy Trinity on Fr. Matthew Quay in Cork's centre, right on the southern arm of the Lee.

While I await my new job to come through I've engaged in some retail therapy - mainly books on icons but I also decided to replace my camera.  Some years back I had an old Canon which I gave away believing that my little 12M Kodak Z1285 would be sufficient.  Then earlier in the year lines appeared on its screen and on the photos - the processor was no longer functioning.  So at long last I replaced that with a DSLR: a Nikon D3200 (I got a good deal that included an extra Nikkor lens and cost less than the RRP for the basic camera and one lens).   Over the next few weeks I'll be learning to use that camera and putting up some of the photos here.  Cork has some spectacular churches (the Honan Chapel, Peter and Paul's etc).  These photos are from the humble Holy Trinity begun in 1830.

The altar and reredos are not original.  The original altar was removed when the church was remodelled in the '70s.  The altar you see below was put in by the present Guardian, Br. Dermot Lynch, about ten years ago but the reredos is at least 100 years old and is inscribed on the side "Ferdinand Stuflesser, Woodcarver, Ortisei (Italy)".  The company still exists.  It was founded in 1875 and so this is probably a work of the founder.  So this Northern Italian was made originally for the chapel of St. Francis College, Rochestown, Cork.  According to a plate on the side it was a gift of Bridget Rochford in mem ory of her mother. The college was founded in 1884 as our seraphicum - a school for boys who might have a vocation to the Capuchin priesthood.  When the college got a new church the chapel became an art studio  and the reredos went up to Church St. where it was in the Third Order Chapel for many years (it was  there in my time as a student).  Then it was 'lost' when the old friary in Church St. was sold.  A few years ago it was rediscovered back down in Rochestown and some of the friars, Brs. Jer Henehan and John Hickey, convinced the then Guardian Br. Sean Donohue, to bring it to Holy Trinity.

The Presentation in the Temple

The Last Supper after Da Vinci

The Finding of the boy Jesus in the Temple


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