I live not far from Saint Benedict’s Gardens and yet I was totally unaware of this ‘Marian Shrine’ which is very well maintained.

As Ireland has become much less religious over the last few decades I am surprised by the fact these statues still survive and all that I have seen to date are in good condition.

According to some studies there are at least 28 ‘Marian Statues’ in Dublin and most, if not all, are located in working class areas. I am not sure if this particular statue is one of the 28.

My understanding is that the majority were erected in 1954, the first Marian Year, on what would have been public property without formal permission so I suppose that there is a possibility that some of them may eventually be removed. In the case of the statue in Broadstone I cannot see it surviving the construction of the new LUAS tram line especially as it is somewhat isolated. If it disappeared would anyone notice?

Most of my Irish readers will be aware of St. Lukes in Drumcondra but many will be unaware that there is a Marian Statue across the road beside the river. When I lived nearby I was aware of the statue but I do not remember the location having a formal name. Recently I noticed that Dublin City Council has erected a sign indicating that the site is named “Our Lady’s Park”. I therefore assume that this statue will survive.

I am a bit confused by the statue in Stillorgan because the following is engraved on the base “erected by the people of Stillorgan 1986”. I lived nearby from 1964 until 1984 and I am certain that there was a ‘Marian Statue’ at Patrician Villas well before 1986. In 1987, Pope John Paul II initiated a Marian year in preparation of the forthcoming millennium so I suppose that it is possible that an earlier statue was replaced by the residents of Patrician Villas.

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