St Patrick’s Catholic Church, Donabate

St Patrick’s Catholic Church, Donabate

Photo credit: St Patrick’s R.C. Church, Donabate, courtesy of Mick Mongey.

Described as one of the most ornate churches in Ireland, the 1903 church was built in the Gothic style using Portmarnock redbrick. Designed by Architect George O’Connor it is roofed with red tiles and has an ornate rose window and high altar of Carrara marble with carved panels from the life of St Patrick.

The church features a stained-glass two light window “Suffer little Children,” designed by Harry Clarke in 1925. With surrounds of foliage, sky and mountain, the left light depicts St Joseph with three women one of whom is holding a baby and the right light depicts Jesus holding a baby on His knee.  The lower panels  are illustrated with the Holy Family’s flight into Egypt and the crucifixion of Jesus and the two thieves. The Men’s Sodality of the day collected £100 to pay for the window.

Stained glass window

Photo credit: Donabate Harry Clarke window by Michael Cullen on behalf of Fingal County Council

Did you know….

The window is one of thirty-six Harry Clarke stained-glass windows in Fingal. Others can still be seen in Balbriggan, Naul, Lusk and Castleknock.


Find out more

Lucy Costigan & Michael Mullen 2010, Strangest Genius The Stained Glass of Harry Clarke, The History Press Ireland

Nicola Gordon Bowe 1989, The Life and Work of Harry Clarke, Irish Academic Press



Donabate Heritage Map