Welcome to our website and this brief history of our Church.
Sutton was originally part of the greater Howth Parish. In 1816, with the help of men employed in the construction of the new harbour of Howth, a thatched chapel was built on Howth’s Main Street. That site was in turn replaced, in 1899, by the present Catholic Church in Howth. A Chapel-of-Ease was then built in Sutton in 1912 and extended in 1927. This was known with great affection as ‘The Tin Church’ – the precursor of our current Church.
After World War II, the north-shore of Dublin Bay saw a huge suburban expansion. St. Fintan’s was built in response to the needs of Sutton’s new residents. Designed by Andy Devane, (a parishioner) of Robinson, Keefe, and Devane, it was erected in 1973 and is widely considered to be one of the more attractive of Dublin’s new churches. Its atrium acts as a transition from the outside to the interior of the Church. The atrium contains the impressive Church bell tower, which is the highest landmark in the area. The interior is fan-shaped, with the roof rising to the Crown of the Sanctuary, which is lit in shafts from the slats above. Both interior and exterior walls are ribbed concrete, the impression being taken from fishing ropes. This sets the Church in its coastal location, and serves as a fitting place of worship and community gathering for today’s residents who continue our rich traditions of Faith and Culture in the 21st century.
It is impossible, however, to speak of the Church in isolation from its physical location and surroundings. The Howth Peninsula is both captivatingly beautiful and rich in tradition. It is a unique repository of Ireland’s geographical, mythological, historical and cultural past. Within a setting of some of the most breathtaking scenery imaginable there are to be found relics of ages past, relics that tell of early invasions, the advent of Christianity, wars and times of peace.
The information has been sourced from the following bibliography.
We wish to express our special gratitude to Vincent McBrierty, FTCD, MRIA, for his kind permission to re-produce here from his work, and for all his assistance.
V. J. McBrierty (ed.) ‘The Howth Peninsula; It’s History, Lore & Legend’, North Dublin Round Table, (1981)
Ball, F., Ball: A History of the County Dublin: Volume V; Greene’s Bookshop Limited, Dublin, 1995.
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