History

historychurch

 


Newry, Middle Killeavy (Drumalane Parish) is a very young parish. In fact we only came into being in September 1996. Yet our history goes back much further. Our mother parish is Killeavy and that is where our history began.

Parish Priest at the time Rev J.P. Canon Toner, Upper Killeavy (commonly called Cloghogue Parish) had the vision and foresight to build a new Church for his parishioners who lived in the lower end of his extensive parish. As the south side of Newry began expanding, the need for a new church on the south side of the Clanrye River became evident. It took courage and foresight to undertake this building at that time due to the post war year restrictions.

Kenneth J. Kenny was appointed as architect. The church was a simple rectangular construction with a stylish arched doorway with a niche above with the statue of Our Lady. The interior which was bright and airy was beautifully enhanced by blue and crimson toned stained glass windows, icon type script and Passion scenes. The sanctuary canopy shows the Holy Spirit in the form of a dove. The original maple and terrazzo flooring is now covered by carpet. Another wooden feature, namely the gallery front and the seating for 650, is in African mahogany. The Stations of the Cross have a background of Gold Leaf Mosaic with figures silhouetted in coloured mosaic. Our Lady of Perpetual Succour shrine has been moved and is now situated along the right hand side. This shrine along with so many other items was donated and the names of the donors are recorded on a bronze plaque in the porch.

Sunday 31st October 1954 (Feast of Christ the King) was a day of great joy when our new church “Sancta Maria Assumpta(Our Lady of the Assumption) was solemnly blessed by His Eminence John, Cardinal D’Alton, Primate of All Ireland. Canon Toner thanked all who contributed towards the erection of the new church, he especially thanked His Eminence Cardinal D’Alton who agreed to the erection of the church and contributed generously toward the cost. The church is locally referred to as Dromalane church.

The first wedding ceremony to be solemnised in our church, was that of Theresa, fourth daughter of Mr. & Mrs. Michael McKeown of 1 Dromalane Park, and Raymond, only son of Mr. & Mrs. Patrick Carroll, 125 Dromalane Park.

As each decade unfolded improvements were made. The present sacristy and parish rooms were extended and upgraded. The beautiful altar rails were tastefully placed along the back wall of the Sanctuary

Over the last fifty years there has been extensive housing developments, namely, Dromalane Park, Fathom Park, The Glen, Glen Hill Park, Barcroft Park, Aileen Terrace, Pound Road, Hawthorne Hill, Pine Grove, Lisdrumliska, Quayside Close, Dublin Road, Carnegat area, Chancellors’s Road and Corrinshego and still developing. So what had once been a rural area was now vastly becoming a major urban district with increasing needs, bringing about the decision to establish us as a new parish within the city area of Newry. We still have many links with Cloghogue For example, some ministries are still working jointly and many of our deceased family members are buried in Cloghogue graveyard.

The Church was artistically adapted to serve the liturgical requirements of today. The church was fitted out with a new altar, confessional room, not to mention the very beautiful mosaic floors for both the new baptismal font and the requiem space. The mosaic depicts the flowing waters of death and life, where when baptised we die and become reborn in Christ.

In response to an invitation from Archbishop Seán Brady, a Marist team consisting of three Marist Fathers, Frs. Edwin McCallion, Paddy Stanley and Michael Maher, and three Marist Sisters, Srs. Brenda Dodd, Elsie Gilmartin, and Caitriona Ryan, assumed responsibility for our parish on 5th April 2002. In the years that followed, they have made a deep impression on all of the parishioners. During the Marists years the parish celebrated its Golden Jubilee of the Church in November 2004

In 2007 the Marist Fathers and Sisters who had been responsible for the parish, finished their term of office, and a new appointments were made to the parish,

Frs. Laurence Boyle, Gregory Carville and Fergus Breslin assumed responsibility for the parish. In 2010 they were joined by three sisters from the order “Poor Servant of the Mother of God” (PSMG), Srs. Rita Dempsey, Gabrielle Hogan, and Marie Slacke. Their mother house is in Roe Hampton London.

PARISH PRIESTS IN UPPER KILLEAVY 1954-1996

Peter Joseph Toner P.P.
Henry Laverty P.P.
Patrick Joseph McKee P.P.
Malachy Coyle P.P.
Henry Devlin P.P.
Seán McCartan P.P.

CURATES IN UPPER KILLEAVY 1954-1996

Louis McGirr CC
Kevin Mahon CC
Henry Devlin CC
Hugh O’Neill CC
James Byrne CC
Kevin Cullen CC
Oliver Breslin CC
Stephen Duffy CC
Sean Moore CC
Padraig Keenan CC
John Heagney CC
Aloysius McCourt CC
Martin McArdle CC
Gregory Carville CC

PRIESTS & RELIGIOUS WHO HAVE SERVED IN THE NEW PARISH OF MIDDLE KILLEAVY

1996 – Peter McParland, Adm.
John Burns, CC
Patrick Hannigan, CC/Adm.
John Hand, SM, CC
Edwin McCallion, SM, Adm.
Michael Maher, SM, CC
Patrick Stanley, SM, CC
Sr. Brenda Dodd, SM
Sr. Elsie Gilmartin, SM
Sr. Caitriona Ryan, SM
Sr. Frances Cosgrove, SM
Sr. Maura Hennessy, SM

2007 – Laurence Boyle, P.P.
Gregory Carville C.C.
Francis Coll C.C.
Fergus Breslin C.C.
Uduak Abara C.C./MSP
Patrick Akekpe C.C/MSP

2010   Sister Rita Dempsey PSMG – (Poor Servants of the Mother of God)
Sister Gabriella Hogan, PSMG
Sister Marie Slacke PSMG