St Clement was the third Bishop of Rome after St Peter and was martyred in 99 AD. St Clement’s Church at Rodel is the outstanding medieval ecclesiastical building in the Outer Isles. Built in the early 16th-century church by Alasdair Crotach (Alexander MacLeod) of Dunvegan and Harris; his richly carved tomb is within the church. The design of the church is unique for its date in the West Highlands, being cruciform-plan, with a square tower at west end. The tomb is unusual in having a series of high-quality carved mural panels depicting Holy figures, a stylised castle, a hunting scene and a Highland galley.
The church was restored in 1784 and 1787 by Alexander MacLeod (inscription panel within church) and again in 1873 at the expense of the Countess of Dunmore (inscription panel over main entrance).
The Kirkyard contains a series of family aisles and monuments and is the burial place of several of the MacLeod chiefs.
The church is in the care of Historic Scotland. For visitor information, telephone 01851 710395 (The Blackhouse, Arnol).
Services by arrangement
Open dawn to dusk all year
The information about churches in Scotland’s Churches Scheme has been provided by the congregations or taken from the Historic Scotland list and published sources, in particular, the Buildings of Scotland volumes and the RIAS Illustrated Architectural Guides. To contact this specific church please complete the Contact this Church form above. The information is not authoritative; please contact Scotland’s Churches Trust to let us know of any errors or omissions.