Tuesday, February 3, 2009

St. Doms

Although our family grew up as parishioners of St. Joseph's Church. Dad's roots were always at St. Doms, the beautiful church at the corner of State and Gray Streets. Growing up at 264 Danforth, he became an alter boy on Christmas Eve 1923 at the age of nine and served the church in some capacity for 75 years til the night he died, on Christmas Eve 1997. Closed that year, St. Dominic's Roman Catholic Church has now taken on a new life as the Maine Irish Heritage Center. Now, that would make Dad smile.


  1. Marchin O'NeachtainFebruary 4, 2009 at 7:14 AM

    There are a lot of similarities between a Irish churches and pubs. In Ireland, the monks who ran the monestaries and friaries of the past were also the source for ale. In fact they were also the major brewers of the day. This is how the monks earned money to run the monestaries. If you look at the front doors of many of the pubs of Ireland they are very similiar in design and construction of the church doors. Today, if you walk into a pub in Ireland, most men will take off their hats as a sign of reverence. In america, boys and men have not understood that connection which is why here men still wear their hats in pubs. Also, many of the pubs in Ireland have a partition along the "bar" so that men can sit on one side and women on the other to vent and discuss the events of the day. After Mass, the pubs or Public Houses are the most popular places in all of Ireland. The confessional booth in a church would be another "snug" where the priest and parishioner can discuss "behavior" issues.

  2. This is one of my favorites. I love the bright almost orange effect the sunlight has on the front of this building. I viewed this on an early morning when I was really feeling the stress of life closing in. What a surprise it gave me. It is so majestic and yet comforting in times when one needs solace. I shall view this one often. Thanks.

  3. Marchin O'NeachtainFebruary 7, 2009 at 8:22 AM

    If you travel to the Western part of Ireland, all of the street and city names are listed with the old Gaelic (Old Irish) spelling just below the English spelling. While we were there, we always talked with the Priests and Nuns since they were the real historians and they knew all of the families and knew where all of the surnames and where they originated. Also, we spoke to the oldest people on the streets, since they passed much of the history along to the following generations. It is very unique and it is also a sign for generations to remember that the British changed their way of life many generations before. If you research the Old Irish language it is one of the most difficult languages to pronounce and to understand. In the eastern part of the Country, say the Dublin area, it is very British in appearance and very little of the charm has been retained as opposed to the West. Dublin is much more Europe like and is a bustling city. Galway, ahh Galway is just different, very similar to Portland. It is a Sea Port, but Galway Bay is very similar to Casco Bay. Many of the Irish immigrants from Cork, settled on Munjoy Hill (named after Mt. Joy) and many of the Immigrants who settled on the West End near St. Dominic’s Parish were from Galway.

  4. Thanks, Marchin, for the historical insight. Your travels to Ireland have made that country seem really delicious. Hopefully we can do it sometime in the future! For now, see you at the pub in Lakeland in April!!

  5. Marchin O'NeachtainFebruary 7, 2009 at 8:53 AM

    I will be there. Many times dream about beautiful downtown Lakeland and all of it's splendor. These photos that are placed here jog my memory so much that I remember some of the things that Mr.Donald used to say about Irish immigrant families.