The Parish of St Margaret's, Dunfermline, has been in existence for over 170 years although the church itself was not built until 1896. It has seen many changes over the years, both internally and externally but has always stood as the centrepiece of pilgrimage and honour of St. Margaret, the patroness of Scotland.
Holy Name’s journey really started in 1858 when Lady Margaret Harris (nee Sligo) – wife of Archibold Vincent Smith of Inzievar House, Oakley, wrote three urgent letters to Bishop Gillis in Edinburgh. She offered to fund a chapel in Oakley if he would allow the Rev. William Smith (her husband’s brother) to be her chaplain at Inzievar. The church initially was in the local school, a wooden church was built in 1904 and the present stone building was opened in 1958. It was amalgamated with St. Margaret’s Memorial Church in Dunfermline in 2018 to form St. Margaret’s Parish.
In 1996, St. Margaret's Memorial Church celebrated its centenary. As part of the celebrations, a short history of the Parish was compiled and published. An online version of this history is available to download here 'A Short History of St. Margaret's'.
The fascinating history of Holy Name Church can be accessed here. The church itself boasts world-famous stained glass windows and Stations of the Cross designed by Gabriel Loire, read more about this here. The church also has a statue by Hew Lorimer.
Holy Name Church houses a museum on the upper floor.
Fr. Mullen served as Parish Priest between 1889 and 1903. He was the inspirational leader who oversaw the construction of our present church.
St. Margaret’s Memorial Church is built with only the porch, music loft, nave and aisles completed.
On 10th June 1899, the very first pilgrimage took place in honour of St. Margaret.
Fr. Richard Delaney is the first parish priest formally inducted in Dunfermline since the Reformation. He set about completing the Church Sanctuary including the installation of the beautiful Reredos.
1939 – 1945
Fr. Bohanski – spiritual leader of the Polish community - would regularly conduct mass at St. Margaret’s Memorial Church.
Sunday Mass was broadcast from St. Margaret’s Dunfermline by BBC television. This broadcast was followed by an evening transmission of “Songs of Praise”.
Fr. Lynch carried out major alterations to the sanctuary to facilitate the new liturgy.
St. Margaret’s 900th Anniversary celebrations took place over the whole year during Fr. Barr’s ministry.
Celebrations of 150 years of Catholic Worship in Dunfermline and 100 years since the opening of St. Margaret’s Memorial Church. Pope John Paul II imparts a special Apostolic Blessing to the Parish of St. Margaret’s Dunfermline on this occasion.
2019 - 2021
Legacy Project - We spent £750,000 refurbishing and upgrading the external fabric of the church for it to withstand another 30-40 years of Scottish weather with limited intervention.