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St. Oliver Plunkett returns to Armagh

Archbishop Eamon Martin, Primate of All Ireland, blesses the newly unveiled statue of St. Oliver Plunkett in Armagh Cathedral. On July 1, 1681, having been found guilty of high treason for promoting the Catholic faith, Plunkett was hanged, drawn and quartered at Tyburn, the last person to be martyred in England for the Catholic faith. He was canonized in 1975 by Pope Paul VI. The 350th anniversary of St Oliver’s appointment as Archbishop of Armagh fell on July 9th. The unveiling coincided with the anniversary. The statue, a seven-foot bronze, was created by Dublin sculptor Dony MacManus. The Irish Times described it as “an arresting work, portraying Plunkett in the final moments of his life: his toes are grasping instinctively at the edge of the plinth, and his pectoral cross is accompanied by the hangman’s noose.” Photo by Liam McArdle.