Christ Church Cathedral
Image by infomatique
Two Cathedral Issue
For most of their common history, both Christ Church and St. Patrick’s held the status of cathedral for the Dublin Diocese, a rare arrangement which only ended following the move to disestablish the Church of Ireland. In early times, there was considerable conflict over status but under the six-point agreement of 1300, Pacis Compositio, still extant, and in force until 1870:
The consecration and enthronement of the Archbishop of Dublin was to take place at Christ Church – records show that this provision was not always followed, with many Archbishops enthroned in both, and at least two in St. Patrick’s only
Christ Church had formal precedence, as the mother and senior cathedral of the diocese
Christ Church was to retain the cross, mitre and ring of each deceased Archbishop of Dublin
Deceased Archbishops of Dublin were to be buried alternately in each of the two cathedrals, unless they personally willed otherwise
The annual consecration of chrism oil for the diocese was to take place at Christ Church
The two cathedrals were to act as one, and shared equally in their freedoms.
To this day, the seat of the Catholic Archbishop of Dublin, St. Mary’s, is known as a Pro-Cathedral, in acknowledgement of the fact that the Holy See recognizes Christ Church as the rightful seat of the Catholic Archbishop.