People left wondering how to protect churches in Dublin following attacks by vandals.

Our Lady Mother of Divine Grace, Raheny has been the subject of frequent attacks by vandals and now faces the prospect of being closed during daylight hours.

Metal doors torn from collection boxes, even fire extinguishers have had to be hidden away in the sacristy. Special protective bars have had to be bolted to the inside of some of the church windows.

On one occasion, the vandals wielded a pick axe punching a hole right through a stained glass window.

Vandals are not just targeting the Raheny church. St Kevin's Church on Harrington Street in Dublin has also been hit by vandals. At the Church of St Michael and John on Lower Exchange Street, vandals broke open collection boxes, damaged shrines and attempted to set fire to the building with a pile of candles. As a result, the church remains closed from 11.30 am each day.

In Kilbarrack, a residents committee has decided to protect the area from vandalism by people from outside the area. Alderman Vincent Manning explains that residents now patrol the area to keep strangers out and thereby eliminate vandalism.

There's no law to protect us against it so I think we've got to do it ourselves.

An RTÉ News report broadcast on 30 August 1977. The reporter is Colm Connolly.